We have highlighted events and festivals around the country to enjoy with your family this holiday season.
Traveling this holiday season and looking for that special Christmas event to attend? We have you covered! We combed the country for the best Christmas events around the USA for you and your loved ones to explore and enjoy. From botanical gardens to local zoos and even a raceway, there is no skimping on the lights this holiday season. Enjoy!
New York, New York
Quite possibly the most famous ice skating rink and Christmas tree in the world, no holiday visit to New York City would be complete without visiting Rockefeller Center. Buy your tickets online and go as early as possible to avoid the crowds and enjoy the bedazzled towering tree!
Portsmouth, New Hampshire
This small historic town does it up every year in the most classical of Christmas themes. There is a Candlelight Stroll Under the Stars, performances of White Christmas at the local theater, a gingerbread contest, and even an outdoor skating rink in the heart of downtown.
This dazzling drive-through holiday lights experience features your favorite holiday scenes and characters of the season using loads of lights and awesome digital animation. Experience all the magic from the comfort and safety of your own car as you wind through the sparkling path of Foxborough’s favorite holiday tradition.
Asheville, North Carolina
This creative competition has been a family favorite since it began in 1992. The gingerbread houses aren’t the only draw as the competition is held at the historic Grove Park Inn. If you can’t make it to the mountains to see the competition in person, follow along on the Grove Park Inn Instagram page.
Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
Night of a Thousand Candles, Brookgreen Gardens
See this gorgeous garden aglow in Christmas glory with 2,800 hand-lit candles and countless sparkling lights. Founded in 1931, these gardens are more than just beautiful plants, but a real community hub for this area. Bring your friends and family for hot cocoa, holiday music, and a wander around the grounds of this National Historic Landmark.
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Smoky Mountain Winterfest, various locations
This event spans several towns in the Smoky Mountains from Gatlinburg to Pigeon Forge and Sevierville, so check out the site and explore all the family fun from Christmas parades to chili cook-offs and of course, all that is happening at dreamy Dollywood!
Celebrating it’s 57th anniversary, take your family on an amazing tour through over two million lights! Continually ranked one of the Best Public Holiday Lights Displays in America. This is one not to be missed.
Enjoy live music performances, entertainment, and thousands of dazzling hand-lit luminarias at Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Garden. For 44 years, the Garden’s trails sparkle during this iconic holiday tradition, and it will remind you of what the season is all about. This year, the event will shine extra bright with the inclusion of Chihuly in the Desert!
Las Vegas, Nevada
Enchant is an annual event in 5 cities across the country including Dallas TX, St Petersburg, FL, Washington DC, and Las Vegas NV. This high production event includes a dazzling light maze, ice skating, a Christmas village and market full of food and shopping, and of course, Santa.
Zoolights, Lincoln Park Zoo
Located at Chicago’s beloved Lincoln Park Zoo, this year’s ZooLights will feature hundreds of luminous light displays and seasonal experiences including meeting Santa, making S’mores, gift shopping, and even warm spiced wine, frosty beers, and festive cocktail specials for the adults!
Branson Let There Be Lights Drie Thru, Promised Land Zoo
Drive through this wondrous light display at your own pace or go big with a VIP Santa Safari! Once you are done with the tour, get your Christmas shopping done at the Christmas Candyland Village and of course, make a date to meet Santa himself!
For 23 seasons, the Milwaukee Holiday Lights Festival has made spirits bright with its animated sculptures, interactive displays, and twinkling street décor. This festive backdrop will continue to deliver oohs and aahs in a safe, socially-distanced environment. Take a stroll or a drive and experience the brilliance of more than 500,000 lights throughout downtown’s parks and streets.
Los Angeles, California
LA Zoo Lights, Los Angeles Zoo
It may not feel like winter in LA, but this zoo really puts us in the spirit with the world’s largest illuminated pop-up storybook, a magical disco ball forest, giant glittering snowflakes, and a twinkling tunnel filled with dynamic swirls of color plus a bevy of light-up animals both handcrafted and high tech.
Winter Wonderland, Portland International Raceway
Recognized throughout the Pacific Northwest as the “Largest Holiday Light Show West of the Mississippi”, the 29th annual Safeway Winter Wonderland will not disappoint! Enjoy the most spectacular drive-through light show in the region from the comfort of your own car, viewing over 250 colorful light set pieces and many fully animated scenes along the way. To add a little warm fuzzy to the experience, all proceeds from the event will benefit Sunshine Division‘s year-round hunger relief efforts that provide thousands of free, nutritious meals to Portland families in need.
Snowflake Lane, Bellevue Square
Come to the square for a nightly parade of holiday floats, dazzling lights, merry music, and of course snow! Your kids will be thrilled with the 300 live toy soldier drummers, costumed characters, lights, and music.