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Houston Zoo Lights 2018: Beat the Crowds & Save Money at Houston’s Popular Holiday Event!

November 17, 2018 through January 13, 2019, the Houston Zoo closes at 4:00pm… only to reopen with millions of lights at 5:00pm.  Every evening, except December 19, 24 & 25, families can walk through the zoo until 10:00pm/11:00pm!

The earlier start time is new this year… along with a new route. The Wetlands, in the middle of the zoo, is still under construction so the lights weave a new way through the zoo.

Also, Santa is there this year (on select dates). Get you picture with him at the Twiga Cafe in the African Forest.

Go on November 26 for a special sensory-friendly Zoo Lights night for guests with sensory sensitivities and their family. On this night guests can expect a smaller crowd, quieter music, limited flashing lights and two designated quiet areas.

The least busy days are “value nights”, which are usually school nights. If you can swing it, go on a “value night” to have more room to move around and enjoy. If you cannot make a “value night”, go on a “prime night” instead!

Value Nights: Member $12.95 Non-Member $17.95
Prime Nights: Member $17.95 Non-Member $22.95
Children 1 and Under – FREE

Look for a discount with Groupon, HERE! Also scroll down for more discounts.

Buy tickets online or at the gate.

Right at opening there is usually a (fast moving) line to get in. If you buy your ticket online, you have a jump start.  Also, I’ve noticed that if you go at 8:00pm instead of 5:00pm, many of the families have gone home. (I know this is late for school nights!)

Food and drink is for sale… but remember that you can bring your own food in to the zoo… so if you bring your own popcorn and hot chocolate, that could save you some money.

Finally, know that the animals are sleeping so you won’t see many of them.  We just spotted some sleeping flamingos while we were there!

Whenever you go… have fun and send us your pictures!


More Savings:

Group Ticket Discount: Purchase tickets for groups of 20 or more for a special price of just $15 each. (See your discount in your shopping cart.)

Military Mondays – December 3, 10, 17: Members of the military get special $12 admission. Purchase tickets online and use code Military18 and show your military ID when you arrive.

First Responder Tuesdays – December 4, 11, 18: Police, fire, and rescue professionals can enter for $12 on these nights. Purchase tickets online and use code Responder18 and show your professional ID when you arrive.

College Student Wednesdays – December 5 & 12: Texas college students get $12 admission. Use discount code College18 and show your student ID when you arrive.

Educator Thursdays – December 6, 13, 20: Teachers, school administrators and other educators get $12 admission. Use discount code Educator18 and show your educator ID when you arrive. Join on us Thursday, December 20 to kick off your holiday break!

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