PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — It wouldn’t feel like the holidays in Portland without ZooLights!

Starting Wednesday night, visitors at the Oregon Zoo can enjoy the zoo in a whole new light — literally. The annual winter festival features more than a million and a half lights, including life-size illuminated animal silhouettes.

Over the past five years, more than a million people have strolled through the Oregon Zoo to enjoy the festivities. 

“Attendance has been off the charts the past several years,” Ivan Ratcliff, the zoo’s guest services manager, said.

ZooLights calendar below

In addition to the decorations, visitors can ride the popular lighted train and enjoy dinner from a variety of food carts. 

ZooLights runs from Wednesday until Jan. 5, 2019. It’ll be closed Nov. 22 and Dec. 24-25 for the holidays as well as Nov. 27-28 for BrewLights.

Here are a few tips to fully enjoy ZooLights
  • If you want to beat the crowds, come on a weeknight early in the season
  • Ride the MAX to the zoo, so you don’t have to worry about parking
  • Consider taking a Lyft. You can get a discounted ride to the zoo by entering the code “ZooLights18”
  • Show up late: The busiest time is between 4-6 p.m.