The Best Leopard Gecko Habitat Tanks Compared

Leopard Geckos are as close to the perfect pet as reptiles get – they don’t necessarily require UVB lighting (though it helps dramatically), can happily thrive in 10 gallon environments and can live to be up to 20 years old. In order to get such a high lifespan you’ll need to pick the perfect terrarium and decor that will keep your leopard gecko happy and healthy.

The optimal home for your gecko is an aquarium or terrarium tank. The basic rule of thumb is that your terrarium should be at least 10 gallons per gecko. So if you have two leopard geckos a 20 to 30 gallon tank would work best – or even two separate 10 gallon tanks would be recommended since housing geckos together can cause issues. Regardless, you shouldn’t ever house two male leopard geckos together as they will fight constantly. A screened top will also necessary for your tank, as it will not only prevent your gecko from escaping but to also prevent any other pets you may have from getting to your gecko.

Hagen Exo Terra Short All Glass Terrarium


  • Size: 24 x 18 x 12 Inches.
  • Weight: 33.5 lbs
  • Top panel contains a wire-escape for any lighting/humidifier.
  • Dual locking doors (prevents escape).
  • Raised and waterproof base.
  • Front opening doors for easy maintenance!

There’s one feature on this tank that has completely won me over: the front opening doors. It makes feeding, watering, and handling so simple. It’s one of the easiest to clean terrariums I’ve ever used while still being a very high quality design. The best part of the Exo Terra is that it doesn’t make me dread cleaning day – I know I can pop in and out of the tank with relative ease.

As far as durability goes, the Exo Terra wins by a wide margin. All of the movable glass slides perfectly together without wobbling or shaking and the dual locking doors ensures that your little leopard won’t be able to escape. There’s plenty of space in the tank so be sure to fill it up with lots of decor and stuff for him to climb on as leopard geckos love going vertical.

Remember, though, this only includes the tank – all of the extra accessories will need to be purchased separately. This includes the substrate, heating pad, lighting and climbing/hiding places. While all of these additions can be a bit pricey, it’s also fun to customize your terrarium with diverse decor instead of just using a premade out-of-kit option.

Pros

  • Great ventilation from the sides/front.
  • Waterproof bottom.
  • Lots of room to add decorations and space for your gecko to climb.
  • Completely escape-proof.
  • Nice looking background.
Cons

  • A bit heavy.
  • Styrofoam background is a bit cheap.

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REPTI ZOO Reptile Glass Terrarium


  • Size: 23″ x 18″ x 18″
  • Weight: 55.12 lbs
  • Allows UVB and infrared penetration.
  • Raised bottom.

Like the Exo Terra, the REPTI ZOO has front opening doors (which I can no longer live without) which make maintenance a breeze. You can also pop off the top ventilation screen if you need more access to the whole tank, but for day-to-day handling I recommend using the front doors. Unfortunately there isn’t a handle, so you may need to buy a suction cup or use some hot-glue to attach a handle to the front to make opening/closing easier.

This tanks seems like an optimal choice if you have multiple leopard geckos and are looking for a terrarium that offers lots of room to roam. Any lighting/UVB fixtures will fit in easily and there’s a wire exit in the top screen to make the whole process extremely simple.

Remember that this only includes the terrarium itself, all of the extras (like substrate, heading pad, lighting, etc) will still need to be ordered separately.

Pros

  • Quick installation (20 mins).
  • Very good looking.
  • Tons of space to roam around.
Cons

  • Only one key to control the door lock (and you need to lock it in order to close).
  • No handles on the front door (may need to buy a suction cup to open/close easily).

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Exo Terra Leopard Gecko Starter Kit

Includes:

  • 10 gallon tank.
  • 10 gallon sand mat.
  • Substrate heater.
  • Simple analog thermometer.
  • Hide cave.

This one may seem appealing to somebody looking to buy their first leopard gecko, but I’d caution against it. The 10 gallon tank is the bare minimum recommended size and even then, alot of the extra accessories it comes with don’t make very much sense. Despite popular belief, leopard geckos don’t actually naturally live in sandy areas – they live in forest undergrowth primarily among rocks. Yet, for some reason this package includes sand.

The lamp isn’t much better as it’s just LED and doesn’t actually let off any heat. It does come with a care guide, some multivitamins and some simple decor like a water bowl and cave but those extras don’t really justify the price tag. Plus most people like to decorate their leopard gecko terrarium themselves and not just use some out-of-box generic products.

All in all, it seems meet the bare minimum requirements but expect to make additional purchases like a heat lamp and some extra decor.

Pros

  • Simple all-in-one kit.
  • Good size for a single juvenile leopard gecko.
Cons

  • The OEM lamp doesn’t product heat.
  • The 10 gallon tank may prove too small after your Leopard Gecko grows into adulthood.
  • Construction seems to be a bit fragile and may break during shipping.

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Zoo Med Laboratories SZMNTL10 Reptihabitat Leopard Gecko Kit


Includes:

  • 20″x10″x12″
  • 10 gallon tank.
  • 10 lbs white desert sand.
  • Reptile thermometer.
  • Day/night heat bulb.
  • Water conditioner

Like the Exo Terra Leopard Gecko starter set, this one comes with lots of extra accessories like vitamins, food, water conditioner, lamp fixtures, day/night heat bulbs, a simple reptile thermometer and loads of sand. The 10 gallon tank is on the small size, so if you have two geckos I’d strongly recommend upgrading to a larger tank.

Despite what the description says, this kit doesn’t come with everything you’ll need to start caring for a leopard gecko. You’ll also want to pick up a heating mat as leo’s love climate variety between 75 to 90 degrees. You’ll also want to pick up some new substrate as sand isn’t their native habitat. Add in some extra hiding places and decor and you should be good to go.

While these combo sets may seem appealing, they don’t truly provide everything you’ll need to get started which is why we recommend buying each piece one-by-one.

Pros

  • Contains lots of helpful extras like the ReptiCalcium™ vitamins, ReptiSafe® Water Conditioner, 60w day/night heat bulbs, thermometer and lamp fixtures.
Cons

  • Will need a different substrate than the 10lbs of sand it comes with.
  • A heating pad will also be necessary.
  • Only large enough for one leopard gecko and may still need to be upgraded once it reaches adulthood.

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Zilla Reptile Starter Kit 10 with Light and Heat


  • 20.2″ x 10.5″ x 12.6″ inches.
  • 18.2 lbs.
  • Two 5.5″ reflective domes.
  • Light fixtures.
  • Night black & white spot incandescent bulbs.

While this starter pack does contain lots of helpful elements, you’ll still need to buy things like feeding dishes, a background and a warm heating pad. But it does have alot going on for it – the tank is the perfect size for a single leo and it’s light enough for one person to move/setup.

The quality is a bit on the low side: the white incandescent light seems to be a little harsh on my leo’s eyes and ultimately broke within a week. The little clips that hold the lid on broke and won’t stay in place and I find myself piece by piece needing to replace/upgrade the components included.

Ultimately I wouldn’t recommend this one, as the construction quality really doesn’t make up for the convenience of ordering an all-in-one kit. Alot of the bonus accessories will need to be swapped out or will break within a month.

Pros

  • Very light and easy to manage.
Cons

  • The light bulb is commonly defective and will break within a week.
  • The clips on that lock the lid in place will break within a week.
  • Will still need to buy all the decor like a water/feeding bowl, substrates and hiding spots.

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Carolina Custom Cages Terrarium


  • 48″ x 24″ x 24.1″ inches.
  • 72 lbs.
  • Top quality construction.
  • Perfect for multiple adult leopard geckos.

This is by far the largest terrarium on the list and primarily meant for people with multiple leo’s. That being said, it takes up a LOT of space and weighs a massive 72 pounds so you’ll likely need multiple people to move.

That being said, the construction itself is gorgeous and of the highest quality. If you’re really concerned about giving your leo as much room as possible, this may be the way to go. Just be sure you have enough space in your home to house it as it is *extremely* massive. The price tag is also a bit hefty, but the quality is second to none.

Unlike a few of the other kits in this list, you’ll still need to pick up all of the extra accessories as this only includes the tank.

Pros

  • Perfect home for multiple adult leopard geckos.
  • The highest quality construction I’ve seen.
Cons

  • Extremely heavy.
  • Takes up a lot of space.
  • Very expensive.

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Cleaning the tank

Generally speaking, it is very quick and easy to clean your gecko’s habitat. Leopard Gecko waste is dry and solid and they are largely creatures of habit and often defecate in the same spot which makes it easy to clean. Use a small aquarium fish net or an old spoon to clean up the mess once or twice a week. Remember: the more often you clean the tank, the better. If you use reptile carpet you can take the carpet out and wash it every months or so.

Decorations and Supplies

In addition to any terrarium tank you buy, your gecko habitat will also need a special flooring or substrate. For beginners it’s recommended you use reptile carpet, paper towels, or newspaper. While sand may look appealing, it is best to start off with reptile carpet at least until your gecko gets bigger. Baby and juvenile geckos can inhale sand and die and even adult geckos have been known to struggle with sand ingestion.

Each leo will also need their own hiding place or house. A variety of caves, logs, and hide boxes are available from pet stores for your gecko. These hiding places are where your gecko will spend the majority of their time so you may want to spring for something nice. You will also need to purchase a food bowl (for mealworms) and a water dish. One of my favorite parts of owning a leopard gecko is adding decorations like rocks, fake plants, ledges and logs to make the habitat look more natural and lived-in. Just make sure that all decorations are secure, you wouldn’t want a rock ledge to fall and injure your gecko.

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