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Hike-in Required
No
Open Year-round
No
ADA accessible
Yes
Guided tours
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

At the Oregon Zoo in Portland, they take holiday lighting to the next level. Bring family, friends, or just yourself as you walk though and enjoy the zoo after hours and watch it come to life with acres of lighting displays. It might be a little chilly, but they have hot drinks to warm you up. Or, if you attend an adult-only night, they have something harder than coco to keep you toasty. With music, food, and lights all around, how could you not get into the holiday spirit this season?

Most of the animals will be all tucked away for the night, but that doesn't mean you won't see any. If you get there early enough, you can see the elephants inside getting some pre-bedtime snacks, or you can see the bats starting their day. But this season there are new animals on display to admire, and they are made of light. Scattered all around the zoo are hundreds of breathtaking light up animals that you can try to find. From cute little sea slugs to a fire-breathing dragon, they have a creature everyone will enjoy! 

With great lighting comes great selfies, and the Oregon Zoo has places just for that. From beautiful backdrops to long tunnels of lights, there's a spot for you to get that perfect shot. Though you might have to wait your turn. 

If you get tired but still want to look at the lights, hop on a train. The zoo's trains are decked out for the holidays along with some special lighting displays you can only experience upclose during your ride. If trains don't fit your fancy, there is a carousel for people of any age to enjoy. 

If you chose to drive to the zoo, there is a huge parking lot to find a spot, but the zoo offers discounts to admission if you take public transportation. This way you avoid traffic, parking, and enjoy a discount.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

Private or commercial fee

Open from

November 21 to January 05

Pros

Family friendly. Seasonal. Beautiful lights. Two adult only Brew Light Days.

Cons

Crowds. Pricing. No pets. Weather exposure.

Pets allowed

Not Allowed

Features

Family friendly
Flushing toilets
Shelters
Playground
ADA accessible
Covered picnic areas
Wildlife

Location

Field Guide

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