Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination
November 26, 2021 to January 2, 2022
Closed Mondays, Tuesdays, & December 25th
*Winter Wonderland will be open Tues 12/14, Mon 12/20, & Tues 12/21
Take a magical journey through Southwick’s Zoo with friends and family to view spectacular holiday lights and lanterns!
This year’s Winter Wonderland guests will enjoy two events in one! Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination will feature a Drive Thru tour through the Frozen Forest where they may spot a few our of fallow deer and through Whoville to encounter the Grinch himself. Guests can also look forward to being enchanted by stunning three-dimensional lanterns hand-crafted for the Festival of Illumination.
Park your vehicle, either before or after your Drive Thru tour, and stroll through Santa’s Village. Here guests can enjoy a meet and greet with Santa Claus as well as performances under the Cirque de Illumination tent. Concessions will be available in Santa’s Village, so be sure to warm up with a hot toddy, cocoa, or smores!
The Purple Peacock Gift Shop and Galliford’s Restaurant & Tavern will also be open, and a tram will be available to transport guests between locations.
$60 per car
Winter Wonderland admission is only available per vehicle. You do not need to purchase tickets per person.
Admission includes the Winter Wonderland and Festival of Illumination Drive Thru and Santa’s Village.
Admission MUST be purchased online and will not be available at the door as we are limited to how many cars can visit each night.
Santa’s Village Hours*:
Weekdays: 5:30pm – 9:30pm
Weekends: 5:30pm – 10:00pm
*Note: December 24th is the final day that Santa will be at Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination.
If you purchase a ticket for a later Drive Thru time, please plan to arrive early enough to enjoy the walk through area before your Drive Thru tour.
All guests entering Southwick’s Zoo are doing so at their own risk. Southwick’s Zoo will not be held
responsible for injuries or damage to vehicles including but not limited to poor weather conditions,
road condition, other vehicles, etc. Please review all rules and guidelines before purchasing your ticket.
Drive Thru Safety Rules & Visitor Guidelines
NO large Commercial vehicles, Oversize Vehicles, Oversize Vans, Minibuses,
Motor coach, or Motorcycles. If you are unsure whether or not your vehicle is too large, please email [email protected].
Do not exceed at speed of 2mph during the Drive Thru.
During the Drive Thru, guests must remain in their vehicles and stay on the designated path at all times.
Do not drive distracted. Stay aware of your surroundings, and be careful to keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle ahead of you.
Please do not litter. Do not throw any object out of your vehicle.
Smoking, recreational drug use, and alcohol are not permitted.
Pets CANNOT be brought to Winter Wonderland.
Be respectful of other visitors, staff, and the animals. Do not honk or play loud music.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have a question you do not see answered below, please email [email protected].
Do I need to purchase tickets online? Can I purchase tickets at the door?
Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination guests are required to purchase their tickets in advance online for their visit date and entry time. Admission cannot be purchased at the door. A limited number of tickets are available for each night of Winter Wonderland.
I have unused zoo admission tickets. Can I use them to visit Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination?
Zoo admission tickets cannot be used for Winter Wonderland celebrating the Festival of Illumination. Winter Wonderland requires its own separate ticket purchased online for a specific date and entry time. Festival of Illumination tickets purchased for September – November 24 when the event is a walk thru cannot be used for the Drive Thru. There is not an EARTH Member discount for Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination admission.
Can I show my ticket on my phone?
You can show your ticket on your phone, however, for faster entry, we strongly recommend printing your ticket out.
What happens if it rains or snows? Can I reschedule my ticket if needed?
Please visit our website at www.southwickszoo.com or our Facebook page for updates if weather conditions are poor. In the event of severe weather, we reserve the right to cancel drive thru tours. In this case, ticket holders will be able to change their reservation date by contacting Guest Services.
If you need to reschedule your ticket, please email [email protected] and include: 1.) your Reservation ID number, 2.) your original ticket date and time, and 3.) your new desired ticket date and time.
You may also reach our Guest Services calling 1-800-258-9182 ext 211. If you call outside of hours of operation or are unable to reach a zoo employee, please leave a message, and Guest Services will return your call when available.
What can I expect at Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination?
Guests can expect to have a magical night with friends & family during Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination! Guests will encounter thousands of dazzling lights as well as breathtaking hand-crafted lantern displays.
Guests can also park, either before or after their Drive thru, to stroll through Santa’s Village. Here you will be able to enjoy a meet and greet with Santa Claus as well as performances in the Cirque de Illumination tent, concessions, and more! Santa’s Village will be open from 5:30pm to 9:30pm on weekdays, and 5:30pm to 10:00pm on weekends.
Can we walk in the zoo?
Winter Wonderland and the Festival of Illumination is a Drive Thru event with a walk thru portion located outside of the main zoo. The zoo will NOT be open to walk in. Those interested in walking through the zoo to view the Festival of Illumination lanterns will need to purchase tickets for September 23-November 24 when the event is still a walk thru. Learn more at www.festivalofillumination.com.
Will the gift shop be open?
Yes, the Purple Peacock Gift Shop will be open for holiday shopping!
Will there be food available to purchase?
Drive Thru guests are welcome to visit Santa’s Enchanted Village for concessions and special treats. Galliford’s Restaurant & Tavern will also be open for on-site dining and takeout. Visit www.gallifords.com for current hours and menus.
What time should I arrive? Where should I go?
Please arrive at least 15 minutes before your scheduled time. Latecomers will be put into the next time slot if available.
All drive through guests must enter the parking lot through the entrance on the Vineyard Street side of the lot. Enter the address 46 Vineyard St, Millville, MA 01529 into your GPS to be directed to the correct entrance. After you enter the Vineyard Street entrance, you will be met by a zoo employee for check in. We strongly recommend having your ticket printed for faster entry. You will have two options when you arrive. You can either:
A.) Park and visit Santa’s Village, the Purple Peacock Gift Shop, and/or Galliford’s Restaurant & Tavern BEFORE your Drive Thru
B.) You may do the Drive Thru first and then park afterwards to visit Santa’s Village, the Purple Peacock Gift Shop, and/or Galliford’s Restaurant & Tavern BEFORE your Drive Thru
Note: Santa’s Village is open 5:30-9:30pm on weekdays and 5:30-10:00pm on weekends, so please take this into consideration when purchasing your ticket and panning your arrival time to ensure that you have enough time to enjoy everything.
How long is the Drive Thru?
Each drive thru tour will last approximately 40 minutes.
Is the zoo fully paved?
Please be aware that not all paths in the zoo are paved, so some sections may be bumpy. We are also located on a hill, so some pathways on the drive thru route are somewhat steep. Please do not turn your headlights on during the Drive Thru. You may use your fog lights however. In the event of inclement weather or icy conditions, we strongly recommend using 4-wheel drive.
Can we stop and get out of our car?
Once the Drive Thru tour starts, guests cannot stop and get out of their vehicles inside the zoo. Guests can park and enjoy walking through Santa’s Village, the Purple Peacock, and Gallifords Restaurant & Tavern before or after the Drive Thru tour however.
Will Santa be there?
This year’s guests will be able to enjoy a meet and greet with Santa at Santa’s Village. Santa’s Village will be open from 5:30pm to 9:30pm on weekdays, and 5:30pm to 10:00pm on weekends. Please be aware that December 24th will be the final day to visit Santa.
Will I see any animals?
Most animals are moved indoors and off exhibit during the winter, and the focus of Winter Wonderland is holiday lights and displays. Animals that are not moved off exhibit have the option to go indoors at anytime and some may be kept indoors in the event of very cold temperatures or snow. As this is a winter and nighttime event, we cannot guarantee what animals will be outside and viewable during Winter Wonderland.
Can I bring my pets?
Pets are not allowed onto zoo grounds, so they CANNOT be brought to Winter Wonderland. The only exception is service dogs.