I was given the opportunity to check out the Toronto Zoo’s latest exhibit recently, and this time it wasn’t new exotic animal to admire. Terra Lumina is a new immersive art and light experience on a 1.5km trail inside the zoo. The 11th exhibit in Moment Factory’s night walks, the event begins at sundown, the dark forest comes to life with messages of hope and harmony for the upcoming future.
The exhibit is supposed to give us a glimpse into the year 2099, we act as the ‘time travelers’ peeking into a world where animals, the environment and humans co-exist peacefully together. You are one with nature as you watch a pack of wolves run by your path and howl at the moon, beat a colourful lit up drum in time with other ‘travelers’ and listen to a mystical bison deliver a speech on how we can change the world.
Many of the themes in the exhibit are based off of First Nations traditions and storytelling. You pass by tipi’s glowing in the moonlight, you’ll be greeted with traditional music (from singer Tasheena Sarazin) and drum circles. All were developed with input from First Nation curator Taylor Tabobondung during the creative process.
Video projections, laser lights and ambient wildlife noises are prevalent throughout. There is something new and magical around every corner for children and adults alike to enjoy. It was nice to see the children especially, taking in messages of hope for the world of tomorrow, many of them rushing wide eyed from one station to another. Glowing signs reading ‘Change is Possible’ and ‘Change the World’ light up the trail, encouraging you to walk into a brighter future.
I had a wonderful time during our night walk and it was interesting to see a familiar space like the zoo, in a new light (quite literally). I’d recommend the event to absolutely anyone. The crowd was made up of every age group and background, there is truly something for everybody.
Things to note:
Tickets are sold in time slots, you’ll be able to choose your entrance time after sundown (check the website for sunset times) for every 15 minutes. If you arrive early, there are camp fires surrounded by Muskoka chairs to relax by and a coffee and snack shop to visit before beginning your walk.
You will be outside for the entire 1.5km walk. Be sure to dress for the weather and wear comfortable shoes. It took us about an hour to get through.
The event runs until April 13th, 2020, with tickets being $29.99 for adults and $24.99 for children. Buy in advance online to avoid disappointment.
No animals will be available for viewing during this experience, they’ll be sleeping. Enjoy the projected animals! (Bison, wolves and polar bears!)
Thank you to Terra Lumina for sending us experience the night walk! It was truly a night to remember.
Hey! I'm Sarah! A 30 something living in downtown Toronto with a great guy and an OK dog. I love seeing what my city has to offer and try to hit up as many fun events or attractions as I can! I haven't slept since 2004.