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I've heard rumors that families are putting up Christmas trees already and I absolutely love it. The Bronx Zoo’s Holiday Lights, a family-favorite holiday light experience, will be back starting November 18, bringing New Yorkers much-needed joy for the winter season.

Related: Visiting newly renovated Empire State Building NYC

The Bronx Zoo is located on 265 acres of hardwood forest in Bronx, NY and it's a national treasure. It opened on Nov. 8, 1899 and has been connecting families with nature ever since. The holiday programming has been delighting families for decades as folks travel to see the light display.

More than 360 lanterns representing almost 90 animal and plant species will connect you to the real wildlife and wild places that WCS staff works to protect through our field programs around the world, and our zoos and aquarium in New York. 70 new lanterns representing 30 new animal species will make their debut at this year’s Holiday Lights!

This year’s Holiday Lights includes enhanced light shows that provide perfect photo ops for friends and family. On Astor Court, a new holiday tree show features synchronized musical light performances featuring more trees than ever before. And the walk-through Light Tunnel will dazzle you with animal-themed light shows.

A Note About the Animals

The star attraction for Holiday Lights is the lights! All indoor animal exhibits will be closed to allow animals to get a full night's rest. To see our animals, please visit the Bronx Zoo during the daytime. In winter season, last entry to animal exhibits is 4:00pm.

Special Events at the Holiday Lights

Entertainment will include holiday-themed music, ice carving demonstrations, costumed characters, stilt walkers, souvenirs, and seasonal treats like hot chocolate and s’mores.

  • Holiday Train: The family-favorite kids’s ride returns for 2022! Astor Court; $3 ($2 Members)
  • Pajama Party Weekend: December 2,3,4 2022, 5pm-8:30pm. Families, ear your coziest pjs to Holiday Lights and snuggle up to enjoy storytelling, crafts, and a special character meet and greet in Schiff Family Great Hall!
  • Sensory-Friendly Night: November 29 2022, 5pm-8pm, designed for guests who thrive in a sensory-supportive environment. During this special evening, you can expect the same great Holiday Lights experience with modifications to make it more sensory friendly.
Holiday Lights at the Bronx Zoo in NYC

Plan your Visit

The lights are on display from November 19th - January 9th Tickets for Holiday Lights must be purchased in advance and are now available online

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WCS members will receive a 40-percent discount and the opportunity to preview Holiday Lights on November 15-17 before the festivities open to the public on November 20 (note the preview tickets are sold out for 2021). Members at the Conservation Supporter level will receive free admission to Holiday Lights.

This program does not include animal exhibits. All animal exhibits close at 4:00pm. Holiday Lights is a rain or shine event.

Parking at the Bronx Zoo is available via the Southern Blvd entrance and Bronx River Parkway entrance. $20 car; $23 bus. Availability is on a first come first served basis and not guaranteed. Please check before you visit to check parking availability. If you're using public transportation, please use the Pelham Parkway subway station as Asia Gate will be closed.

Get your tickets here

For more information, visit The Bronx Zoo is located at 2300 Southern Blvd, The Bronx, NY 10460

Holiday Lights at the Bronx Zoo in NYC

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Momtrends was not paid for this post. Photos from Julie Larsen Maher.

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