Preview: Christmas at London Zoo

PUBLISHED: 12:47 13 November 2018 | UPDATED: 12:47 13 November 2018

Visitors to Christmas at London Zoo have the chance to enjoy fairground rides after dark

Visitors to Christmas at London Zoo have the chance to enjoy fairground rides after dark


The festive season sees a new illuminated trail which circles the Regent’s Park attraction making sure not to disturb sleeping animals.

London Zoo illuminationLondon Zoo illumination

This Christmas sees a new illuminated trail around London Zoo which circles the 36 acre site making sure not to disturb sleeping animals.

After dark visitors to the Regent’s Park attraction can enjoy the mile-long festive themed walk which transforms familiar landmarks such as Lubetkin’s penguin pool into a spectacular light show

Culture Creative, the team behind ‘Christmas at Kew,’ have used 100,000 twinkling pea lights to make tunnels of colour, wild animal sculptures and a light vortex. Singing trees, glowing fountains, where the music dances in time to christmas classics, Father Christmas, giant babules, and an 11 metre high tree made of 365 illunimated wooden sledges are along the trail, which is followed by the chance of family fair rides. Culture Creative director Zoe Bottrell answers our questions

Q What other projects have you worked on?

A Culture Creative have been creating illuminated trails since 2005 and have had the privilege to work in many venues from National Parks to Kew Gardens, National Trust Estates to Blenheim Palace. We are very excited to be creating an entirely new experience in another world renowned location. We create site specific events in heritage and landscape and this is a new landscape for us which is exciting.

Q What are the challenges of this job?

A: The Zoo is a very special place, with very special residents and they have been our first priority when planning this. There are places that will be quieter where animals are sleeping and our installations have been carefully chosen to ensure that they fit in with not only the architecture but also the way that we need to manage audiences through this unique space.

Q How have you worked with ZSL staff to make sure the animals are happy?

B: We have worked with the animal welfare team and all the keepers to ensure that what is created is with all the animals in mind. There are still surprises along the way - and some WOW moments with fountains, projection and sculptures

Q How has the zoo site informed your design?

A Our work is always in response to the landscape around us and the Zoo has absolutely been our inspiration, using both the network of paths and the famous buildings: The Lubetkin penguin pool will be brought back to life with fountains, the Mappin Terraces will be a fun projection, along with a huge tree made from sledges, animal sculptures and penguins to find on the trail. We hope this is a unique experience and although we can’t expect any of the animals to stay up late for this new event, we hope visitors will see the Zoo in a new way.

Selected dates from Nov 22 to Jan 1. Adult £16.50, Child £10.50 Family £52.00,

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