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Christmas Starlight Night - from 9.30am!

Sun 23 December 2018 09:30 - 19:30

Christmas starlight night edit

Add a spark of magic to your festivities this Christmas!

Swan editJoin us from 9.30am until 7.30pm on the 24th November, 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd & 23rd December for our Christmas Starlight Nights as we remain open into the evening! 

The extended opening with give you more time to enjoy our fantastic events as the festivities continue beneath our twinkling Christmas lights! PLUS as the evening light fades our beautiful Christmas illuminations will turn on! 

Don't forget the children can also take part in our Santa Experience and will be able to go home with their own 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' the penguin soft toy!*
Find out more about them here. 

*All Children wishing to take part in the Santa Experience and receive a 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' penguin soft toy, MUST purchase a Santa Experience Ticket. This includes passholders and under 3s. Find out more here. Soft toy subject to availability.

A Santa Experience Ticket costs just £7.00. 

*Please read the full term & conditions for our Christmas Starlight Night events before visiting.

All you need to know:

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Admission Prices

Ticket Type Gate Price

E-ticket Price
15% off


£18.99 £16.14
Child (3-15yrs) Entry only
(does not include Santa Experience ticket)

£15.99 £13.59
Child (3-15yrs) Entry & Santa Experience ticket included

Senior (60yrs +)

£16.99 £14.44
Child Santa Experience ticket 

£7.00 £7.00
Passholder Santa Experience ticket 
Book online by the 31st October and  purchase a
child passholder's Santa Experience ticket for just £6.00
£7.00 £6.50



Who needs a Santa Experience ticket? 
All children who wish to enter the Santa Experience and recieve a 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' soft toy will require a Santa Experience ticket. This includes children under 3 if you would like them to meet Santa himself and receive a 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' penguin soft toy.

Child Zoo Passholders, child complimentary ticket holders including adopters, children attending birthday parties and animal experiences must also purchase a Santa Experience Ticket if they wish to participate in the Santa Experience and receive a 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' soft toy.

Tesco vouchers: 
Tesco vouchers are accepted towards admission tickets purchased on the gate on the day of your visit during our Magic of Christmas events. However please be aware that Tesco vouchers CANNOT be used towards a Child's Santa Experience ticket which MUST be purchased seperately at the cost of £7.00 per person for those children who visit to take part.

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Papa penguin

The Santa Experience

During our Magic of Christmas event days the kid's can take part in the magical Santa Experience for the additional cost of £7.00 per a Santa Experience ticket. 

Journey through the magical festive scenes and meet some of our elf team! PLUS every child taking part with a Santa Experience ticket will be able to take home their own 'Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu' penguin soft toy!* 

Find out more about Papa Penguin & Baby Bleu's tale here!

PLUS On the 1st December Mother Christmas will also be available at The Santa Experience to meet children if they wish to greet her instead of Santa.

*Subject to availability. 

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Event Timetable 

Click on each of our Christmas activities below to find out more about them and when they are taking place:

 African Snow Safari 
Inside Elephant Kingdom (D3)

Santa Experience 
Kalahari Theatre (G3) 

Elves' Workshop 
Next door to Penguini's Restaurant (G2)

Christmas Train 
Lost Madagascar Express Train (D5) 

Staff Christmas Pantomime 
Kalahari Theatre (G3)

Santa's Reindeer Stable
Familiar Friends (A3) Next to Wallaby Walkabout

Enchanted Woodland
All Saints Church (H2) Access through Organgutan Forest 

Elves' Christmas Party 
On the stage at Penguini's Terrace (G2) 

Christmas Tale 
Kalahari Theeatre (G3)  

Light a candle for Conservation
All Saints Church (H2) Access through Orangutan Forest

Festive Food at the Zoo! 

As well as our full timetable of events you can also enjoy some delicious festive treats during your visit as selected catering outlets remain open into the evening. 

More information coming soon. 

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Perfect Christmas Gifts!

During your visit you can also stop by the Colchester Zoo Shops! 

You can also purchase gift vouchers for your loved ones either by popping into our Guest Service Department or by visiting our online shop here.

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Admission Information

Information on our 2018 Christmas admission prices COMING SOON! 


4.30pm close or dusk if earlier
Last admission to zoo grounds at 3.30pm

Click here for further closing times


upcoming events
November 2018
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Animated gif of a elephant