Light Creatures at Adelaide Zoo 2022 | Review

Light Creatures at Adelaide Zoo 2022 | Review

By Claire Davill 

Light Creatures is back at Adelaide Zoo for it’s second year as part of the Illuminate Adelaide festival.

The event is largely similar to last year, but with a few additions and changes that really enhance the experience.

Light Creatures is a spectacular display of giant illuminated lanterns and creatures including jellyfish, pandas, and giraffes at the Adelaide Zoo. It’s such a dazzling adventure to wander the Zoo at night to discover these magnificent creative works as part of Illuminate Adelaide.

See the Giant Pandas rolling across the lawns; a gigantic 27m Dreamtime Skink sitting on the hill; the tallest 7m Giraffes; an Underwater Wonderland with wriggling vivid jellyfish which sway and change colour above you, and more.

Soundscapes, music or stories accompany the installations. For example, at Skink Park by artist Elizabeth Close, while you watch the huge slithering creature move and change colours, it is accompanied by music and then storytelling by Jack Buckskin.

The biggest change this year, and the biggest drawcard is the addition of Cahaya the tiger – a huge illuminated tiger that prowls the zoo grounds thanks to expert puppeteers from Slingsby Theatre. At 7pm and 8pm, Cahaya walks from the zoo entrance to the central Rotunda and back, stopping to sniff and growl. This walk takes about 20 minutes, which gives you ample opportunity to view this spectacle.

Another new installation is a projection of light on the path leading to the Skink Park, featuring artwork by Elizabeth Close – this moving, swirling light entices kids to run, walk and twirl through the light and interact with the artwork.

During this event at night, you will not see many of the real animals who live at the Zoo. The light installations have been strategically placed in areas that will cause the least amount of disturbance to the animals. Exceptions are the pelicans, who are fed during the Light Creatures sessions, and a Night Creatures Wildshow in the Children’s Zoo area, focusing on nocturnal Australian animals. Check the times listed at the entrance for both of these shows. You may also be lucky enough to spot the cassowary as you walk past the enclosure on your way to the Underwater World installation.

Tips for Visiting Light Creatures

  • See all the light installations first and check out the Dreamtime Skink last as it’s right by the playground – it may be hard to drag the kids away from the playground once they see it.
  • Don’t forget to check out the tiger prowl – anywhere along the main path from the entrance to the rotunda will give you a good view. If you head back to the entrance as the tiger is returning you will see the puppeteers walk it back into its home, where you can view it when not prowling.
  • Don’t forget it’s very dark at the Zoo at night – watch your step on pathways and keep a close eye on little ones.
  • The installations are rain-proofed so they will still operate if it’s raining. This is all outdoors so take an umbrella if it looks like it might be rainy.
  • There are food options throughout the zoo, including hot donuts, hot chips, fairy floss, burgers and fries, and gourmet pies and pasties. There are also drink options including coffee and hot chocolate and mulled wine.
  • Free parking is available along Plane Tree Drive, Frome Road and War Memorial Drive

What’s different to last year?

Most of the installations are the same as last year, but there are some enhancements and changes:

  • The addition of Cahaya the tiger and the tiger prowl is a must-see
  • The light projections on the path to the skink park to walk/run through and admire
  • The Underwater Wonderland installation is a bit more spread out compared to last year, which makes it easier to view the angler fish and coral
  • There are now two entry sessions each night to book. This has made a notable difference to crowding, with it being much less congested and crowded with people compared to last year.



things to do in Adelaide for families

For more information, ticket prices and all enquiries please visit the Light Creatures website or Illuminate Adelaide website

What:   Light Creatures at Adelaide Zoo

When:    Thursdays-Sundays, 7-31 July 2022 at 6:30pm and 7:45pm

Where:   Adelaide Zoo, Frome Road, Adelaide

Who:   Everyone

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: Play & Go Adelaide


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