1. Zoolights – Smithsonian National Zoo, Washington DC

    Just before Christmas I was in Washington DC for work and had the opportunity to visit the Smithsonian National Zoo and see their Christmas event called Zoolights for myself. During the event which takes place in the evenings from the end of November and throughout December, over half a million LED lights are used to decorate the entire zoo. There are lights in all the trees as well as in the shapes of various animals along the main pathways along with music, activities and various food and drink. Most of the animal enclosures are closed in the evening however you can visit the nocturnal animals – I stayed clear of the reptile house though! The best thing about the National Zoo is that it is totally free to enter both during the day and during the Zoolights event every evening!

    The easiest way to get to there is to take the Washington Metro Red Line train to Woodley Park Station and then it is a quick five to ten minute walk along Connecticut Avenue to the zoo. I was incredibly lucky that my hotel was nearby so I only had a short walk to do. Even though it was freezing, thankfully there was a Starbucks opposite the entrance to the zoo to grab a hot drink – I think everyone in the area had the same idea as it was the busiest Starbucks I’ve seen in a long time!

    As soon as you enter the zoo, the lights are simply magical and they are everywhere. Even though it was a Saturday night (and only a few days before Christmas) and quite busy, it did not feel too crowded. Everywhere people were constantly offering to take photos of others which you do not always see everywhere nowadays. I had forgotten how big the zoo was as the lights just kept going on and on – they were so beautiful and there really was a Christmassy atmosphere in the air. Even the candy floss (cotton candy) being sold lit up and changed colour!

    I have picked a number of photos to post here to show you the event – they do not do justice to seeing the lights in person however. So if you ever happen to be in Washington in December, visit the National Zoo – you definitely will not regret it.


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