ZOOLights Safari

December 1-23
6:00pm – 8:00pm
General Admission Applies

ZOOLights will be brighter and more sparkling than ever this year as this festive, family fun event returns for its 7th season. Come out Thursday thru Sunday beginning Saturday, December 1st to see thousands of holiday lights, along with displays. Plus, each weekend we will have special events to bring more of the holiday cheer. Decorate a cookie at Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen, get a photo with Santa Lion or Tiger Claws, play some holiday games, and find your way through our holiday maze.

For 14 fabulous nights the Zoo will share the spirit and sounds of the holiday season. Stroll the zoo grounds sipping some hot chocolate while listening to sounds of the season.

 ZOOLights at the Amarillo Zoo is a sure way to beat those holiday bah hum bugs!

  • Thousands of decorated holiday lights.
  • Special appearances by Tiger Claus, Santa Lion and other costumed animal Santa characters.
  • Wintery kids games.
  • Themed areas including Snoopy, Whoville, Rudolph and a season greetings from out of this world!
  • Readings on Fridays and Saturdays – Night Before Christmas and Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus.
  • Decorate your very own cookie at Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen sponsored by Belmar Bakery.
  • Warm Up with Cold Blooded Creatures in the herpetarium.
  • Meet Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and Blizzard the Polar Bear.
  • Frosty kids activities and take home crafts.
  • Write a letter to Santa at the North Pole mailbox.
  • See a Yeti or have your picture taken with our friendly Sasquatch.
  • Make a treat for our feathered friends.
  • Take your picture at Whoville with the Grinch.
  • Kids can make a gift for that someone special at the Santa’s elves craft shop.
  • Shop at our special “zootique” gift area for that animal lover in the family.


* Most Zoo animal residents will be off exhibit depending on the weather.

When is ZooLights?

ZooLights begins on Friday December 1 and ends on December 23. The event will take place every week Thursday thru Sunday.

What are the hours for ZooLights?

Admissions are open 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 

Will I be able to see Zoo animals?

Animal viewing is limited at this event, as many of our animals are brought inside for the night. ZooLights is an evening, holiday event that does not offer the same viewing opportunities as a daytime visit.

Can I walk around the entire Zoo during ZooLights?

Yes, the entire Zoo is decorated for ZooLights. Weather depending, some animals may be on exhibit on Friday and Saturday nights. The herpetarium and education center are open nightly.

Is food available for purchase?

Yes. The Cafe will be open and serving specialty holiday items in addition to the regular menu.

What happens if it rains?

ZooLights will be closed if there is rain. If in doubt call ahead to check to see if there have been any cancellations.  The Zoo does not issue refunds or rainchecks.

Will the Gift Shop be open?

Yes.  A special holiday gift shop will be open in the education center offering specialty gifts for the nature and animal lover in your family. The gift shop will be open every night during ZooLights. The Zoo is the perfect place to do your holiday shopping!

When will the crafts, games and other activities taking place?

Crafts, games and special activities will mostly take place on Friday and Saturday throughout the month. On the other nights you can still come and enjoy the lights, gift area, concession stand, Herpetarium and Education Center.

Get the latest news and updates! Subscribe to Z-Mail

Come visit us!

The Amarillo Zoo is located in Thompson Park. Take Hwy 287 North off of I-40, take the N. 24th Ave. exit and go West, turn right into Thompson Park and follow the signs to the Zoo parking lot.

Get Directions