See the Houston Zoo in a whole new light! TXU Energy Presents Zoo Lights returns to the Houston Zoo beginning November 18 through January 14, with two million lights illuminating throughout the area. Members get a sneak peek during Preview Night November 15-16!

Houston Zoo is transformed into a winter wonderland each night from 6 pm – 10 pm with late closings at 11 pm on weekends. You’ll enjoy colorful light displays, festive holiday music, strolling carolers and nightly performances, hot chocolate, and more.  A cold weather night makes it even more festive! Don’t miss the 33-ft. decorated Christmas tree, which is a great backdrop for your photos! The animals will be sleeping, so visit during the day to enjoy them!

Zoo Lights is separate admission from the Houston Zoo. During Zoo Lights, the zoo closes at 5 pm and re-opens at 6 pm for the magical light display.

The exhibit offers Prime Nights (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) at $19.95 and Value Nights (Monday – Thursday through December 20 and again in January) at $16.95. Houston Zoo members pay $11.95 and $16.95 depending on the night. Sensory-Friendly Night is November 28 offering quieter music, limited flashing lights, two designated quiet areas and a smaller crowd.

Purchase tickets online here. There is no discount to buying online. Ticket prices online are the same (no service fee) — and you can skip the lines.

Special Discounts

Enjoy special discount pricing on select nights for military, First Responders and educators.

Military Mondays – December 4, 11 and 18: Members of the military pay $9 admission. Purchase tickets online and use code ZLMN17. Military ID required.

First Responder Tuesdays – December 5, 12 and 19: Police, fire and rescue professionals pay $9 on these nights. Purchase tickets online and use code ZLFR17. Professional ID required.

Educator Night – December 7: Teachers, school administrators and other educators get $9 admission. Use discount code ZLEDU17. Educator ID when you arrive.


Parking can be tricky on busy nights. The zoo suggests arriving after 8 pm versus 6 pm to find more parking availability. Check out the map of all Hermann Park parking lot areas, including the lot in front of the Zoo. On Prime Nights, the South Extension parking lot is available for $10 per car at 7100 William C. Harvin — Entrance 35. This includes a free shuttle back and forth to the zoo. It’s also open specific Value Nights: November 20-22, December 18-20.

Or ride the METROrail to the Hermann Park/Rice U Station (Fannin and Sunset) and walk through the main zoo entrance. Lyft is another option as the official transportation partner of Houston Zoo. Download the app and request a driver for your route. Save $10 on 2 rides with code HOUSTONZOO.