Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek, Visiting the Zoo After Hours
Atlanta & Travel + Leisure

Zoo Atlanta’s Twilight Trek, Visiting the Zoo After Hours

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 1

I received free admission to the Twilight Trek in consideration for writing this article. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek, Visiting the Zoo After Hours

Have you ever visited the zoo after hours? Recently I had the opportunity to do just that though Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek program, and it was one unique experience. The Twilight Trek is a family friendly walking adventure through Zoo Atlanta. You are guided by a knowledgeable member of the Zoo Atlanta team as you learn all about the animals, conservation initiatives, and technology used by wildlife biologists to study animals in the wild. The tour itself takes about two and a half hours, and is frankly a great budget friendly way to spend an evening with the family.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 2

Tickets are $15 for non-members of the zoo, and $12 for members. Children under 16 cost $7 for non-members and $5 for members. The program is open to all ages, but is geared for kids 6 years old or older. Keep in mind that you cannot just show up for Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek; reservations are required and they can be made at the Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek web page.

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So what can I expect on the Twilight Trek?

We arrived at the zoo a little after 6 p.m. and were promptly greeted by our guides. The tour is walking and takes place at sundown, so comfortable shoes and bug spray are a must. The first thing we learned about was how wildlife biologists track and study animals in the wild.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 4

The kids were given a radio tracker and tasked with finding an animal that had been tagged and hidden in the zoo. Now I know what you are thinking….how can it possibly be safe to tag an animal and have kids give chase though the zoo. Have no fear…..

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 5

The only thing tagged was a stuffed animal, so no harm done. From there, the kids learned about other tracking methods.

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For example, snakes. You can't put a tracking collar on a snake, so what do you do?

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The kids even had the opportunity to use infrared cameras to track animals though the trees. Now of course the entire tour is not just about looking at technology. This is Zoo Atlanta, so of course there were some animals spotted on our trek.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 8

This big guy came out and said hello. We also had the opportunity to learn about a lot of the feathered animals at Zoo Atlanta. Birds happened to be our guides specialty, which made for some fascinating learning.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 9Take this guy. He is a rescue that wouldn't survive in the wild.

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 10The vultures were pretty impressive. First of all, these birds are big! And do you know how it is that vultures can eat rotting meat without getting sick? Take the tour and find out!  Psst….a hint for you…it has to do with stomach acid. 

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When birding, it helps to have super-vision. Naturally Zoo Atlanta had binoculars on hand. I wonder what he is looking at?

Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek 12

Flamingos. My son was checking out the flamingos with his binoculars. Beautiful birds….kinda stinky though.

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The reptile room was a huge hit. The kids learned all about the different snakes and lizards at Zoo Atlanta.

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So if you are looking for a reasonably priced family adventure in Atlanta, you owe it to yourself to check out Zoo Atlanta's Twilight Trek. You will be hard pressed to find a better way to spend an evening. Have fun!

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25 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. This would be a fun adventure for my entire family. I think I’d enjoy the night experience more so than the day experience.

  2. sara lafountain

    This looks like a really fun way to enjoy the zoo! Night vision goggles are always fun to use.

  3. Ruth I

    I love zoo visits but never tried visiting it after hours. I think this is cool and a great opportunity to learn more about animals.

  4. We love visiting zoos everywhere we go! This looks like a wonderful destination for kids. My daughters love seeing the animals up close!

  5. It looks like you guys had a really cool experience! You saw so much stuff, and learned a lot. It sounds like a neat thing to do.

  6. We’ve been to Zoo Atlanta and totally had a blast. The zoo is huge and there is just so much to see there. Visiting the zoo after hours would be exciting for sure.

  7. I would love to do an after hours at the zoo! So many animals are nocturnal. It would be nice to see them up and awake and also not deal with the crowds.

  8. That sounds like so much fun! I’d love to take the kids. We can’t get enough of the zoo.

  9. Of course, being able to spend more time in the zoo is great, but I also love the extra educational opportunities afforded to the kids, as well.

  10. Rosey

    I love that they take in rescues that otherwise wouldn’t survive in the wild. I haven’t been after hours, but I got a behind-the-scenes tour at a great zoo once, for a college trip.

  11. Pam

    We love visiting Zoo atlanta. We have never done the Twilight Trek but it looks like a great experience for kids! 

  12. $15 sounds like a real bargain to get up close with the animals after hours. A fun way to spend an evening, for sure!

  13. Such a fun time you had to have had. One of those animals reminds me of a creature on Solo. lol. I always enjoy seeing kids have these types of experiences.

  14. That sounds really awesome! What an amazing experience for kids!

  15. This looks like so much fun. I love the back ends of these zoos and aquariums, you can learn so much. I would not hesitate to take advantage of a tour like this.

  16. Amy

    I have never seen many of these animals in real life. I think this zoo is really awesome and makes for a wonderful learning experience for kids.

  17. OMG that looks AMAZING! I love seeing zoo animals up close. Your pictures have me itching to go to the zoo now!

  18. Sherry

    I love visiting the zoo. It would be cool to have a tour after hours. I may stay away from the reptile exhibit though.

  19. Jenni

    This looks like a great adventure for kids! I wish we can visit one day!

  20. Reesa Lewandowski

    What a really cool experience! We haven’t been to the zoo in forever!

  21. krystal

    This looks awesome – it is so hot during the day in our area that I love doing things later in the day or at night!

  22. Smart idea, I’m sure the animals love the cooler temperatures too.

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