Chester Zoo releases new festive film

  • New film depicts a child with a torch being transported into a series of magical worlds
  • From penguins to giraffes, butterflies and a glimpse of Father Christmas, film proclaims ‘Seeing is believing’
  • The advert has been released ahead of the zoo’s annual festive event, The Lanterns
  • Income raised from the event will support zoo, which is a global conservation charity

The Lanterns at Chester Zoo, 2018

Chester Zoo has released a new festive film ahead of its annual family Christmas event, The Lanterns.

The film reveals a child excitedly hiding under his bed covers with a torch, before being transported away into a magical world filled with lights, penguins, giraffes and butterflies.

The 30 second mini-movie has been released to give a tiny glimpse into what visitors can expect at this year’s The Lanterns event, which will contain nine specially created ‘worlds’, filled to the brim with animal-inspired illuminations, magical lanterns, costumed characters, Christmas markets… and Santa himself.

Running on selected nights from 23 November to 23 December, the heart-warming event raises vital funds to help support zoo’s work as a conservation charity fighting to prevent extinction around the world.

Jon Turley, Chester Zoo’s Head of Guest Experience, said: “It’s that special time of year again. We wanted our new film to help kick start the wonderful festive spirit for everyone. As the nights draw in, we’re certainly starting to get that magical feeling here in the zoo. Very soon, nine illuminated worlds will begin to appear throughout the zoo, from a Garden of Delight to an Enchanted Woodland, all twinkling with much loved animal lanterns. This year, seeing is believing.”

For the first time, visitors to The Lanterns will be able to enjoy a heart-warming festive pit stop at the original family home of Chester Zoo founder George Mottershead, in the zoo’s newly restored Grade II listed pub, The Oakfield. Festive food will also be served throughout the route – from Christmas burritos to traditional pigs in blankets.

Tickets range from £10 – £17.50 for adults and £5 -£15 for children. Infants age 2 and under are free.

Visitors will be able to explore the event at their own pace, but on average the experience lasts approximately 1 hour.

Tickets can be purchased at


Chester Zoo’s festive film has been created for the zoo by Ultimate creative agency.