Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Christmas in the Northwest: Part VI - Zoolights in Tacoma

Since I'd enjoyed Wildlights so much, I wanted to come down to Tacoma to check out their version of it - Zoolights. It was super cool, but the traffic was hideous. The only way to avoid that would be to come later, which would be too late for Tyler, or to come on a Saturday, which would be super crowded. We were all pretty hungry after about two hours in the car, so we stopped at the cafe to grab some munchies.

Then it was time to explore! There's a good deal more land mass to walk around than there had been at Wildlights, and as such the lights weren't nearly as condensed. Instead there were cute little animal displays all throughout the park, many more than I'd seen at Wildlights.
Some were in fairly obvious spots, like these tigers running through the jungle trees, while others, like these elephants, were in random parts of the park you'd never think to look at.

Like Wildlights they also had a fair amount of fun moving displays, and there were a few actual animals to view too.  

They didn't have an indoor kids area, but they did have a petting zoo. Those goats got pretty darn close to Tyler. 
The Tacoma zoo also has two indoor aquariums, which are still accessible after dark. They were crazy crowded, though, since it was a pretty cold night.

Ty had fun trying to touch the fish. He tried to grab all these jellyfish. One of these days I'll have to teach him not to do that when he sees them in the ocean.

I liked this very relaxed red starfish, and whatever those feather things are look like enormous quill pens.

After warming up we went back outside. There were some gorgeous displays, like this purple tree and blinking light bridge.
Although there were several parts of the park that had ropes closing them off, they still had decorations within them to view from a distance. I loved the seahorses and the reindeer!
Ty enjoyed a nice break from the stroller when we went into the 2nd aquarium. He played on daddy's shoulders and pet a few stingrays.

On the way there we passed the Seahawks 12th Man tree and the most beautiful area of the zoo.
There's a gorgeous polar bear display in front of an incredible display of Mt Ranier. Next to it is the aquarium with an enormous octopus on top of it and ice skating penguins outside. If it hadn't been so cold and I hadn't had a squirmy child, I would have just sat down on a bench and stayed in this spot for an hour.

For more entries in the Christmas in the Northwest series, see

Christmas in the Northwest: Part I - Bellevue Garden d'Lights and Festival of the Nativity

Christmas in the Northwest: Part II - Teddy Bear Suite, Gingerbread Displays, and Pike's Place Market

Christmas in the Northwest: Part III - Wildlights at Woodland Park Zoo

Christmas in the Northwest: Part IV - Fir Grove in Everett, Bothell Country Village, and Evergreen Church Lightshow

Christmas in the Northwest: Part V - The Lights of Christmas at Warm Beach

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