KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Zoo Knoxville will shine bright again this holiday season with the return of Zoo Lights. The event brings glowing silk lanterns of exotic animals and mythical creatures to life throughout the zoo.

Zoo Lights opens Friday, Nov. 26, and continues through Jan. 9. The lights will be on from 5-8:30 p.m. each evening.

Guests can journey through an enchanted forest of trees wrapped in lights and twinkling Moravian stars while enjoying some special holiday foods created by Zoo Knoxville’s chef.

Zoo Lights tickets are $24 for ages 13 and up, $18 for ages 3-12, and children 2 and under are admitted free. Parking is free. Tickets are available online at, by phone at 865-637-5331, and at the zoo’s ticket office during regular zoo hours.  Zoo Knoxville members receive a $4 discount on admission tickets. 

The Zoo strongly encourages online ticket purchases to ensure entry as the number of tickets available will be limited each evening. Last admission is at 7:30 each evening. Zoo Lights will be closed Dec. 24 and 25.