Zero-dimensional excitons (0DXs) in CdSe/ZnSe nanostructures have been studied by time- and spatially resolved photoluminescence spectroscopy. The three-dimensional confinement is confirmed by an exciton lifetime up to 550 ps, independent of temperature up to 130 K. By preparing mesa structures with diameters down to 50 nm as local probes, an extremely high spatial resolution is achieved, giving experimental access to single 0DXs. A splitting of the ground state into a linearly polarized doublet with an energy spacing up to 1.5 meV is found, varying from dot to dot in sign and magnitude. This indicates a noncircular shape with no preferential orientation of the dots. The dot density is estimated to increase from 5×1010 to 1.5×1011 cm−2, when changing the nominal CdSe layer thickness from 1 to 3 ML, i.e., close to the critical thickness. © 1998 American Institute of Physics.