ZooLights parent review, updated for 2022: Say what you will about seeing Christmas lights from the comfort of your car, I’d rather be on foot and that’s why I was so happy to return to ZooLights at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma.
It had been a few years since we visited, and I always forget what a lovely spectacle it is. There are so many lights! (Some 800,000, according to the website.) And such creative installations: a giant pink octupus, a stunning Mount Rainier, a bouncing kangaroo (complete with Joey), a Sasquatch, a Tacoma Narrows Bridge …
We met another family to walk through the zoo together. It’s kind of an off-and-on tradition for us. This year they’ve added an outdoor beer garden and bonfire.
One great thing is that you can keep a safe distance from other families if that is important to you.
ZooLights parent review, summing up: Go do this if you like seeing lights in the open air and don’t mind being a bit chilly. Also:
- Buy tickets early. They are limited, and they are going fast. (Being a zoo member or BECU member gives you more options.)
- Bundle up. These early-winter evenings can be brisk. That’s one of the things I love about a walk-through event like this, but not everyone — even in my own family — agrees with me about how wonderful it is.
- Another option: Parent review of WildLanterns event at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo.
Side note: As we were merrily driving through the park, we suddenly reached a roadblock and a zoo staffer who informed us of a detour. We needed to take the “back way” to get to the zoo because they were temporarily closing the main road to bring in a crane to move a walrus. No kidding. He assured us that everything was OK with the walrus and that this was a temporary road closure. It’s unlikely this will happen to you, but it was just too odd not to share.
This story was originally published on Dec. 14, 2020.