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Spend the Night at the Zoo

Ever wondered what the Zoo is like after hours? The gates are shut, the lights are down, and everyone has gone home for the day. It’s time to discover the Zoo after dark!

Overnight Adventures put you in the middle of the Zoo after it has closed to the public. Take night hikes, participate in fun, educational activities, get behind-the-scenes sneak peeks, and meet some of our animal ambassadors up close and personal!

Seasonal Program Guide

hippo napping in sand

Overnight Safaris

Whether you’re a lone wolf, family pack, or herd of friends, we have an overnight experience for you. Join us select evenings this spring, summer, and fall. 

Overnight Safari: Amazing Animal Adaptations 

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Why do wolves hunt in packs? Why are penguins black and white? Why do snakes stick out their tongue? Join us for our overnight adventure for individuals, families, and small groups, ages 5yrs and up. We’ll hike, go behind the scenes, and so much more as we delve into the world of animal survival. You can reserve your own room overlooking the Discovery Rainforest, and each room can hold up to 10 people. 

Zoo After Dark: 21+ Overnight 

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A truly one-of-a-kind experience, these overnights make a great date night, friend group outing, or (adult) family adventure!

An interactive social hour will start the night with two drink tickets, light bites, strange zoo games, and a visit from a unique animal. Then, we will break out into small tour groups led by Zoo Educators to traverse through Africa. On our Zoo safari, we will go behind the scenes of Hippo Cove and uncover the secrets of our world-famous bloat. We’ll finish up our night at our Twiga Tents, gathered around a roaring campfire roasting s’mores. After the evening excitement, you’ll cozy up on your bunked cot in our shared tents.

​​​​​​​The next morning, you’ll wake up to breakfast overlooking Giraffe Ridge, and it doesn’t end there! One last special animal guest will join us in the morning to say goodbye.


School & Group Overnights

These programs are perfect for Schools, Scouts, Youth Groups, Clubs, Social Groups, Birthday Parties and more! We tour the zoo, meet animal ambassadors, play games and experience behind-the-scenes! After a night of fun, tuck into your sleeping bag overlooking the animals and then wake up the next morning to breakfast and a special animal experience. The fun doesn’t have to stop there either, as next day admission is included and you can explore the zoo on your own!

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School and Group Overnights Program Offerings

The Booking ProcessAfrican Predator ProwlAdventures in AdaptationsSleep with the ManateesTwiga Tented Safari

  • Find the program that best fits your group by looking at the program details below
  • When you are ready, make a program request through our Online Request Form. Select up to 3 dates your group is available.
  • If one of your dates is available and you’re ready to book, we will book your program and send a confirmation/invoice.
    • If your dates are not available or you request more information, a member of the Education Team will be in touch.
  • Once your booking is confirmed, a 25% non-refundable deposit is due within two weeks.
    • At this time, we will need your best, highest number of participants.
  • Once booked, you will receive a link to access more information about your program, including where to park, what to bring, and a general itinerary.
  • Two weeks before your program date, your group’s final numbers and balance are due.
    • The final number of participants must match or be less than the booked numbers. You will not be able to increase participant numbers after booking.

On the Africa plains, it’s survival of the fittest! Discover the adaptations predators have to hunt and how their prey have evolved to give them a fighting chance. We’ll observe our incredible African predator and prey species, investigating what it takes for these animals to survive. You’ll go behind the scenes to our African animal care staff areas to see how we bring expert care and attention to these extraordinary species. Then after the fun, curl up in our private education classrooms overlooking our rainforest.

Cost: $55/participant. Minimum payment is $825 for Overnight Adventure. For Schools only: paid school staff free.

$45/participant for evening program only (Sunset Safari)

Capacity: 15-90 participants (including chaperones/teachers). Participants will be split into smaller groups and paired with an educational instructor for the night.

When booking, you will give us your best, highest number of participants and pay your 25% deposit. Once your program is booked, your final number of participants must match or be less than you booked number of participants.

Learning Outcomes:

During Africa Predator Prowl, we will prowl the Zoo for predators, explore the intricate food webs that support these animals, and learn how African animals and people coexist across the shared land.

  • Identify what a predator’s role is and discuss how they affect their ecosystems
  • Understand food-webs and uncover the broad implications when the balance is disrupted.
  • Discover different conservation organizations that help humans and wildlife coexist
  • Explore modern challenges of wildlife management, and species’ success stories.

Overnight Adventure Sleeping Arrangements:

  • Your group will sleep in the Harold C. Schott Education Center’s classrooms surrounded by the Discovery Rainforest, including the Oliver Nicholson Memorial Sloth Habitat.
  • Each classroom sleeps up to 12 people, your group will be separated across the classrooms.

School Standards and Scouts:

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Adaptations are the key to life! Join us as we explore how animals find their food, escape predators, find a mate, and overall SURVIVE in all their unique habitats. Throughout the night we’ll explore a few places in the Zoo, participate in fun, educational activities, get a behind-the-scenes sneak peek, and meet some of our animal ambassadors up-close and personal! Then, after the fun, curl up in our private education classrooms overlooking our rainforest. 

Cost: $55/participant. Minimum payment is $825 for Overnight Adventure. For Schools only: paid school staff free.

$45/participant for evening program only (Sunset Safari)

Capacity: 15-90 participants (including chaperones/teachers). Participants will be split into smaller groups and paired with an educational instructor for the night.

When booking, you will give us your best, highest number of participants and pay your 25% deposit. Once your program is booked, your final number of participants must match or be less than you booked number of participants.

Learning Outcomes:

During the Adaptation Program, we will explore the tools animals need to survive, explore the physical and behavioral adaptations that plants and animals have, and learn how to identify these adaptations in ourselves and the plants and animals around us!

  • Understand physical and behavioral adaptations
  • Appreciate the diversity of animals and their adaptations
  • Understand the four adaptations nocturnal animals have evolved in order to survive in their habitats

Overnight Adventure Sleeping Arrangements:

  • Your group will sleep in the Harold C. Schott Education Center’s classrooms surrounded by the Discovery Rainforest, including the Oliver Nicholson Memorial Sloth Habitat.
  • Each classroom sleeps up to 12 people, your group will be separated across the classrooms.

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Florida is full of diverse habitats that are bursting with thousands of animal species, from walking-on-water basilisks to slow-and-steady manatees. We’ll dive headfirst into the astonishing biodiversity of these southern habitats, centering around the lives of our resident manatees who are a part of our rehabilitation program with Florida conservation groups. We’ll get behind the scenes to see how we care for them, and then learn more about the amazing world we live in. When the night ends, you’ll doze off at our Manatee Springs building with manatees floating by your bed.

Cost: $65/participant. Minimum payment is  $975 for Overnight Adventure  For Schools only: paid school staff free.

$55/particpant for evening program only (Sunset Safari)

Capacity: 15-60 participants (including chaperones/teachers). Participants will be split into smaller groups and paired with an educational instructor for the night.

When booking, you will give us your best, highest number of participants and pay your 25% deposit. Once your program is booked, your final number of participants must match or be less than you booked number of participants.

Learning Outcomes:

During Sleep with the Manatees, we will explore the Zoo and learn about diversity and different wildlife management programs. We will also take a dive into:

  • Biodiversity, where it can be found and how we play a significant role in protecting it
  • Eco-regions, specifically the Florida Everglades, and how relationships within make them so significant
  • The Florida manatee, discover why it is endangered, what the Zoo is doing, and what you can do to help
  • Human impact to biodiversity

Overnight Adventure Sleeping Arrangements:

  • Your group will sleep in the Manatee Springs Building, in front of the Florida Manatee habitat! You can fall asleep to the Florida manatees, fish, and other wildlife surrounding you.
  • The Manatee Springs Building is one large space, your entire group will sleep together.
  • You and your group will be parking in the Education Center parking lot and will carry your items to the Manatee Springs building.

School Standards and Scouts:

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A truly one-of-a-kind experience, our Twiga Tented Safari will take you across the African grasslands. We’ll traverse through Africa, listening to tales of innovation for living harmoniously with wildlife, such as how a flashlight can shield you against lions, or why a puppy raised with goats can save cheetahs. On our safari, we will get behind the scenes of Hippo Cove and uncover secrets of our world-famous bloat. We’ll finish up our night at our Twiga tents, gathered round a roaring campfire roasting s’mores. This unique adventure ends with a relaxing night in our shared safari tents on cozy cots and waking up to breakfast overlooking Giraffe Ridge.

*Available April – October

Cost: Overnight Adventure: $900/tent. Minimum payment is $900. Evening program only (Sunset Safari) is not available for this program.
Capacity: maximum 4 tents/40 participants (including chaperones/teachers). This experience is booked per tent with each tent sleeping up to 10 people, and up to four tents available. No minimum participant required.

When booking, you will give us your best, highest number of participants and pay your 25% deposit. Once your program is booked, your final number of participants cannot exceed the number of tents you have booked.

Experience:

During the Twiga Tented Safari adventure, your group will experience unique opportunities only available to this program, including:

  • Behind-the-scenes sneak peeks to see what life is like as an African animal caregiver including keeper prep areas and kitchen space
  • Up-close animal encounters with different Education animal ambassadors
  • A provided bonfire snack at the end of the night and a continental breakfast in the morning
  • A bonding experience you will never forget!

Sleeping Arrangements:

  • This high-end experience allows you and your group to sleep in our African Safari tents located in the Twiga Tented Camp.
  • Twiga Tented Camp sits on the edge of Giraffe Ridge which provides a stunning close-up with our giraffes in the morning when you exit your tent!
  • Each tent sleeps up to 10 people on comfortable cot bunk beds.

School Standards and Scouts:

Make Your Request Today

Can't Sleepover?

Find an educational and fun evening program that fits your family best!

Evening Programs