The Bronx Zoo’s seasonal celebration returns!

Select dates
November 17, 2023 — January 7, 2024
Exclusive Member Previews November 14 15 16

Tickets are required and must be reserved in advance.

BUY TICKETSMember Admission

Join us for a family holiday festival at the Bronx Zoo.

During the evenings, the park comes to life with holiday cheer as immersive light displays, custom-designed animal lanterns and animated light shows sparkle across the zoo. This year, you’ll experience NEW lantern displays showcasing the wildlife of New York’s ocean waters and wetlands, plus a new interactive experience celebrating bioluminescent creatures.
Changes to activity availability may occur due to unforeseen conditions. This program does not include animal exhibits. All animal exhibits close at 4:00pm. Holiday Lights is a rain or shine event.


How much are tickets for Holiday Lights?

Adult $41.95; Child (3-12) $26.95; Seniors $36.95

How do I get tickets?

Holiday Lights tickets are available for purchase online only. All visitors, including Members, must reserve a date-specific in advance. No tickets will be sold on site.

Do I need a special ticket?

Yes. You need a specific Holiday Lights ticket to attend this experience.

Do I need to print my ticket?

Online tickets can be scanned from your mobile device and do not need to be printed. If you do print your tickets: use best quality resolution on white paper; bring ALL the printed tickets.

Is there a group rate?

For groups of 10 or more, please contact our Group Sales Department (, 800-433-4149) for special rates and offers.

At what age does a child need a ticket?

Children 2 and under are free. All guests 3 years old and over must have a ticket.

Do you offer refunds?

All ticket sales are final sale and non-refundable.

Is there a night for guests with sensory sensitivities?

Yes! We are pleased to offer a specific Sensory-Friendly Night on December 7, 2023 and January 5, 2024 to provide an experience that is supportive of guests with sensory sensitivities. See details of program modifications on the event page, or contact with additional questions.

What if the event is cancelled or postponed?

We will make all announcements about overall event schedule or closures on our website:

While we plan to be open all of our operating dates, please understand if a significant weather event or storm might cause a change of schedule. In the event of a closure, you will be issued new ticket(s) for another operating date.

For specific weather-dependent activities or unforeseen changes in program, please use our mobile site.

Can I stay for Holiday Lights if I come during the day?

Daytime park hours on days with Holiday Lights is 10:00am - 4:30pm. The last tickets sold for daytime operating hours is 12pm. Guests with daytime admission tickets must exit the park by 4:30pm. Holiday Lights ticket sales start at 3:00pm. Guests entering the zoo after 3:00pm must have a Holiday Lights ticket to stay in the park.


All ticket sales are final. There are no refunds, cancellations or rescheduling. Due to capacity restrictions we must adhere to the ticketing policies which were stated prior to purchase. This includes the terms and conditions acknowledgment that all sales are final and there are no revisions for credit, refund, rescheduling, exchange or cancellation.


We are sorry for the difficulty. Please first check to confirm that the purchase was completed on your credit card. If the charge is in “Pending” status of your account, that means that the transaction was not completed and there is no order made.

If the charge was fully processed and you viewed the Sale Confirmation page at the end of your online transaction but you did not receive the order email, then check your junk/spam folder. If you do not find it, you can contact us to resend your tickets. Please reach out to the Reservation Center to ask for the tickets to be resent: Phone: 800-433-4149 or email (if visit is more than 7 days away): Be sure to include the name, email and phone number associated with your purchase.

You must get the tickets resent prior to your visit to ensure that your order was processed. If you do arrive on site without the ticket PDF it is a risk that you may not have an order reservation, and if we are sold out you will not be permitted entry.

Are military discounts valid for Holiday Lights?

Yes! Active military and veterans are eligible to receive a complementary Holiday Lights ticket for themselves and 50% off tickets for up to 3 guests. Advance ticket reservation required. Please use promotional code MILITARYBZ for active personnel and VETERANBZ for Veterans during checkout. Military member must be present with valid ID on entry. Group must stay together on arrival. Not transferable to spouses. To use these promotional codes, you must purchase your tickets using this link.

Are there student discounts for Holiday Lights?

We offer 30% off of Holiday Lights tickets to NYC undergraduate college students. Advance ticket reservation required. Please use promo code NYCCOLLEGE during checkout. Eligible students must either be: a) attending a NYC college (must show a valid college ID from an institution within the 5 boroughs of New York City; b) NYC resident, attending non-NYC college (must show valid college ID and proof of NYC residency). To use this promotional code, you must purchase your tickets here.


Getting Here

ENTRY ONLY at Bronx River Gate and Southern Boulevard Gate. Asia and Fordham Road entrances are not open for Holiday Lights. Asia entrance is closed for Pedestrian exit after 2 pm.

Is parking available?

Parking at the Bronx Zoo is available via the Southern Blvd entrance and Bronx River Parkway entrance. $20 car; ($23 bus, S. Blvd only). Availability is on a first come first served basis and not guaranteed. Please be aware that the Asia Gate and Fordham Road Gate are both closed at 2pm and not available for Holiday Lights access.

What is the best place for me to arrive or leave by a shared ride service or taxi?

Southern Boulevard pedestrian entrance is the best choice! This is on Southern Boulevard, between 183rd and 185th Streets.

How do I get to the zoo if I don't have a car?

The BxM11 express bus makes stops along Madison Avenue, between 26th and 99th Streets, then travels directly to the Zoo's Bronx River entrance (Gate B). For your return trip, pick up the bus just outside the same gate at the MTA BxM11 sign (just before the underpass). ADA-accessible route: #2 train to Pelham Parkway. This station has three elevators* that lead down to street level. Head west to the Zoo's Bronx River entrance (Gate B). Please check with the MTA for schedules.


The Experience

When is Holiday Lights?

Fridays — Sundays
November 17, 18, 19, 24, 25, 26

Thursdays – Sundays
November 30, December 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 21, 22, 23

Tuesday — Sunday
December 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31

Friday — Sunday
January 5, 6, 7

Ticket sales for Holiday Lights start at 3pm. Advanced reservation required. No tickets will be sold on site.

What are the Holiday Lights hours of operation?

Holiday Lights operates 3pm to 9pm (last entry 8pm).

Holiday Lights tickets are available for 1-hour timed arrival windows, beginning at 3pm. A 3pm ticket for Holiday Lights allows guests to arrive with a little time to visit animal exhibits before those close for the day, promptly at 4pm. Then see the park transform and light up during the sunset transition! Lights and lanterns are turned on around sundown.

Which gates/entrances are open for Holiday Lights?

Bronx River and Southern Boulevard Gates are open. Asia and Fordham Road entrances are not open for Holiday Lights. Asia entrance is closed for Pedestrian exit after 2 pm.

Is Holiday Lights free on Wednesdays?

No. Starting at 3:00pm a Holiday Lights ticket is required for entering.

During Holiday Lights last entry for daytime park tickets is 12:00pm.

Is the entire zoo open?

No. Holiday Lights will take over a large portion of the Bronx Zoo, but all animal exhibit buildings and some other areas will be closed after 4:00pm. Please adhere to all posted signs or barriers that block off some pathways as well as one way paths.

Will animal exhibits be open?

The star attraction for Holiday Lights is the lights! All 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, animal exhibits close at 4:00pm.

Can I eat dinner there?

A variety of standard and special seasonal food offerings will be available. The Dancing Crane Café will be open during all Holiday Lights operating hours. Additional food stands and carts may be open depending on weather.

Do you have Holiday Lights souvenirs?

Yes! The Bronx Zoo Store will be open during all Holiday Lights operating hours. Additional gift stands and carts may be available, weather permitting.

Is the Zoo Shuttle running?

No, the Zoo Shuttle is seasonal and only runs April through October. It will not be operating during Holiday Lights.

How long does it take to see the whole event?

With hundreds of displays, as well as a variety of scheduled activities, programs, dining and shopping options, you can spend all night there! We typically find a Holiday Lights visit to be 2-3 hours.

Can I touch the displays?

For your safety, please do not touch any of the light displays. Stay on marked pathways and do not wander into planters or display areas.

Can I rent a wheelchair or stroller?

A limited number of wheelchairs and strollers are available for rent at each entrance on a first-come, first-served basis. Electric Convenience Vehicles are only available for rent at the Southern Boulevard entrance. See Accessibility for more information.

Can I bring my own stroller? Are there any stroller restrictions?

Yes, you can bring your own stroller. Some buildings and activity areas request that you stow your stroller in a designated area before entering.

Do you have support for guests with sensory sensitivities?

The Bronx Zoo, in partnership with KultureCity, is working to improve our ability to assist and accommodate guests with sensory processing needs. Learn more about the Holiday Lights experience with our social story.

Join us for a special Sensory-Friendly Night on December 7, 2023 and January 5, 2024. See details of program modifications and purchase tickets on the event page.

If visiting on another night for Holiday Lights nights, guests can:

  • Check out a KultureCity Sensory Bag. Available free of charge with an ID hold, bags are loaned on a first come first serve basis. We ask that bags are returned by 9pm. Sensory bags containing fidget tools, noise-canceling headphones and other resources. They are fully disinfected when returned and before a new guest checks one out.
  • Take a break in the Quiet Area. Available 5-8pm, Sun – Thurs; 5-9pm Fri & Sat. Indoors at Administration West building, next to the Sea Lion Pool. This is an indoor space with lower light and sound, to help guests needing a break from highly stimulating program areas.

For visitors in need of assistance, please contact Guest Relations at 718-220-5103 or stop by Administration West building, next to Sea Lion Pool.



Do Members get Holiday Lights free?

WCS Members who have a Zoos, Zoos PLUS or Legacy level get FREE access to Holiday Lights on Member preview days. Exclusive Member discount (40% off) is available for all other dates.
WCS Conservation Supporters, Conservation Fellows, Conservation Partners, Patrons, and Heritage Circle Members have FREE access to the entire Holiday Lights program with advance reservations.
IMPORTANT! Tickets are required for all guests for all days including Member preview days and Conservation-level Members and Patrons. Additionally, free or discounted Member entry is only for the quantity of people covered on the membership. Each additional guest must have a regular Holiday Lights ticket. Please make sure you have your membership card and photo ID upon entry.

Not a Conservation-level Member? Call us at 718-220-5112 from 9 am to 5pm to upgrade your existing membership.

I have a WCS IDNYC Membership - what discounts do I get?

Holiday Lights is a special event with extended park hours and is not included in IDNYC Member benefits. A WCS IDNYC Member can purchase a Holiday Lights ticket at our Member discount. Member discount is only for the quantity of people on the Membership (IDNYC Membership covers one person - only the individual named on the card). Valid Membership card and ID must be presented on entry with Member ticket. If you'd like to upgrade your existing Membership you can! Call us at 718-220-5112 from 9 am to 5 pm daily!

I have an IDNYC membership - can I come for free on member preview days?

IDNYC Members are not eligible for free entry on Preview Days, but are eligible for a 40% Member discount ticket for the named individual on the card.

I have a WCS AQUARIUM Membership - can I come for free on preview days?

Aquarium-Only Members are eligible for the 40% Member discount tickets (for the quantity of people covered on the Membership), but are not eligible for the free entry on Preview Days. But you can upgrade your existing membership by calling us at 718-220-5112 from 9 am to 5 pm daily. Join us for even more great benefits and wild experiences.

I have a WCS AQUARIUM Membership - what discount do I get?

All WCS Members can receive a 40% discount on Holiday Lights tickets for the quantity of people covered on your Membership. You must show your Membership card upon arrival, so please be sure to check your Membership level to purchase the correct quantity of discount tickets.

I have free parking with my Membership - can I park at Holiday Lights for free?

Yes. Member parking benefits do apply to Holiday Lights. All standard parking policies and restrictions apply (one car per membership per day; member must show valid card and ID upon arrival or parking fees will apply. Parking is on a first come first serve basis and is not guaranteed. Availability is subject to capacity or other unforeseen conditions.)

What if I don't have my membership card when I arrive? Can I still use my Member tickets?

For your best experience, please have you valid Member card and ID ready upon arrival at the zoo. Member look-up will be available at the Admissions entry. We will do our best to assist you in a timely manner, but some delay can be expected for look-ups.

Is there a WCS Member discount?

Yes, all WCS Members receive 40% off Holiday Lights tickets. A valid membership card and photo ID must be presented at the time of entry.

As a WCS Member, can I buy discounted tickets for my friends/family?

The Member discount for Holiday Lights tickets is for Members only. You must show your Membership card and photo ID upon entry when using discounted Member tickets. Discounted tickets are only for the quantity of people covered on your Membership level. If you'd like to upgrade your existing Membership you can! Call us at 718-220-5112 from 9 am to 5 pm daily!


Know Before You Go

Important Warning: Some areas may include intense audio, UV lighting, extremely low visibility, strobe lights, fog, and/or special effects. It is not recommended for guests who are claustrophobic, pregnant, are prone to seizures, or have heart and/or respiratory problems.


Balloons, radios, bikes, skateboards, or scooters are not permitted in the Zoo. Playing ball is also prohibited. For a complete list of park rules:


The Bronx Zoo is a smoke-free park. Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is only permitted in parking lots.


Yes, for Service Dog; No, for therapy dogs or pets. See complete information on our Service Dog Policy.

We only allow working Service Animals, in accordance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). Under the ADA, “a service animal is a dog that has been individually trained to work or perform tasks for assisting a person with a disability.” Service dogs are working animals, not pets. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA. Pets, comfort animals, emotional support or therapy animals are not permitted at the Zoo. Upon arrival at the park, you must check in with Admissions so a supervisor can review some logistical items with you and issue a Service Dog Admission pass*. Thank you for your cooperation to ensure a safe and successful visit for yourself, your service dog, the animals cared for at the zoo, and other park guests.

*As stipulated by the ADA, Zoo staff may request that a service dog experiencing difficulty or demonstrating problematic behaviors, such as barking or lunging, be removed from the Zoo immediately. We ask that you promptly comply with any such request for the safety and welfare of all.

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