The Best Places To See The Holiday Lights in North America
The holidays have arrived!
Not only do we love this time of year, but we love seeing all of the gorgeous lights and decorations all over North America.
1. Hershey Sweetlights | Hershey Park, Pennsylvania
Experience the magic of nearly 600 illuminated displays from the comfort of your heated car! Hershey Sweetlights, is located inside of Hershey Park and is a part of Hersheypark Christmas Candylane, a seasonal festival held every year at the park that includes over 4 million lights, rides and roller coasters and more.
2. Winter Festival of Lights | Niagara Falls, Ontario
This spectacular celebration dates back to 1982 and is Canada's largest illumination festival. Over 1.8 million people flock to Niagara Falls every year to enjoy 15 Canadian Wildlife displays, over fifty trees wrapped in lights, the world’s largest Canadian-American Flag, a light show on the Toronto Power Generating Station, the two-storey tall Zimmerman Fountain, and a visitor favourite, Noah’s Ark!
3. Illumination at Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Illinois
This award-winning light show is a mile long walking tour through the 50 acre arboretum with stunning lights, music, and projections. You can even warm up by the crackling fire while roasting marshmallows!
4. Austin Trail of Lights | Austin, Texas
See Zilker Park transform into the walk-through Trail of Lights that attracts thousands of locals and tourists every year. The celebration includes two million lights, 90 holiday trees, over 70 displays, and nightly entertainment. This year marks the 55th annual celebration!
5. Busch Garden's Christmas Town | Williamsburg, Virginia
Busch Gardens goes all out for their holiday celebration, including over 10 million lights, a tree maze, rides and coasters, festive food and drinks, holiday shopping, and heart-warming shows. Even Rudolph stops to make an appearance at the celebration!
6. Denver Botanic Gardens | Denver, Colorado
Celebrate the holiday season at the Blossoms of Light at the Denver Botanic Gardens! This event has been a local favorite for over three decades and transforms York Street into a winter wonderland. You won't want to miss the spectacular 360-degree immersive light experience!
7. Disneyland | Anaheim, California
Who wouldn't want to celebrate one of the most magical times of the year at one of the most magical places in the world? As expected, Disneyland goes all out for their seasonal celebration with festive decor, classic park attractions turned into a winter wonderland, and the Season of Lights evening shows.
8. Festival of Lights | Vancouver, Canada
Hosted in the VanDusen Botanical Garden, the Festival of Lights is a yearly celebration that includes a carousel, mesmerizing dancing lights on Livingstone Lake, Santa's Lodge for free photos with Santa, and tons of selfie spots and photo opps for the whole family!
Best Places in Denver to See Holiday Lights
WHEN: Nov. 7, 2019–Jan. 31, 2020
WHERE: Daniels & Fisher Tower
Night Lights Denver features rotating content designed by local artists and the community and projected on the Arapahoe Street side of the Daniels & Fisher Tower every Thursday through Saturday evening.
WHEN: Nov. 29–Dec. 30, 2019
WHERE: Denver Zoo
Zoo Lights will span 70 acres of Denver Zoo's campus with nightly entertainment, animal encounters, Santa meet-and-greets and, of course, illuminated animal sculptures that swing through trees, jump across lawns, hide in bushes and appear in places where they’re least expected.
WHEN: Nov. 30, 2019–Jan. 31, 2020, 5 p.m.–10:30 p.m., free shows every evening
WHERE: Sculpture Park at the Denver Performing Arts Complex
Join in the free nightly festivities at Denver’s newest holiday attraction, the Mile High Tree. It’s a brilliantly lit, 110-foot-tall immersive art installation that provides a dazzling lights-and-music show every 30 minutes throughout the evening. At 39-feet in diameter, the conical structure can host up to 140 guests at a time for an immersive viewing experience within the tree itself. There will be areas to purchase both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks as well as holiday treats.
WHEN: Dec. 6, 2019
WHERE: History Colorado Center
Hop aboard a comfortable, heated bus as you cruise through some of Denver's most beautiful neighborhoods, all lit up for the season. You'll also learn about the state’s historic holiday traditions and warm up with hot chocolate and cookies.
WHEN: Dec. 6–7, 2019
WHERE: Downtown Denver
The 9NEWS Parade of Lights is the signature event of the downtown Denver holiday season. The countless sparkling lights, marching bands, giant balloons, majestic floats and delightful characters will once again wow hundreds of thousands. Viewing along the parade route is free, and grandstand tickets are sold for seating in front of the beautifully illuminated City & County Building.
WHEN: Dec. 31, 2019
WHERE: 16th Street Mall - Pedestrian Mall
Ring in the New Year with Denver's annual New Year's Eve Fireworks with viewpoints along the 16th Street Mall in downtown Denver. There will be two displays, one at the family-friendly hour of 9 p.m. and the other at midnight. Costumed entertainers will interact with crowds between shows, featuring magicians, costumed characters, balloon artists, stilt walkers, comedians and more.
WHEN: TBA 2020
WHERE: Denver City & County Building
The City & County of Denver and 9News present the annual lighting of Denver's City & County Building. This fun and heart-warming tradition is nearly 100 years old and is the perfect kick-off to the holiday season! Don't miss the ceremonial flipping of the light switch between 6:30 and 7 p.m. Be sure to explore the winter festival in Civic Center Park, which will feature a variety of family-friendly crafts and activities, a heated Bookmobile and story-time tent, a mural-painting project, roaming carolers, food trucks, beer and warm beverages from 4 to 8 p.m. Bring hats, gloves and scarfs for the Giving Tree to benefit Denver families in need.
WHEN: TBA 2020
WHERE: Denver Union Station
The Grand Illumination features beautiful lighting displays in the LoDo District and Denver Union Station. Downtown's unique holiday atmosphere is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. Festivities at Denver Union Station include a countdown to this year's holiday lighting, carolers and treats, drinks at Terminal Bar and more.
WHEN: Nov. 22, 2019–Jan. 24, 2020
WHERE: Water World and Bandimere Speedway (Morrison)
Load up your friends and family into the van (or car, or truck) and experience the holiday season like never before. Drive through acres of more than 1.5 million lights perfectly synchronized to holiday music you'll hear right through your radio. You'll drive by giant candy canes, snowmen, arched pathways and more. It's like being immersed in another world. You can experience the attraction at two locations. (Closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.)
WHEN: Nov. 29–Dec. 22, 2019
WHERE: Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms
Explore Chatfield Farms as it is transformed into a magical holiday wonderland. Santa's Village is a family-friendly holiday event including hayrides, holiday gifts, Santa’s Workshop and so much more.
WHEN: Nov. 30–Dec. 31, 2019
WHERE: 1010 Washington Ave., Golden
Olde Golden Christmas includes a community candlelight walk, Victorian carolers, free Newfoundland dog-pulled cart rides, a holiday art market, parades, shopping, music and theater productions, Santa Claus and twinkling holiday lights!
WHEN: Dec. 6–7, 2019
WHERE: Lakewood Heritage Center
Get a free family photo with Santa, listen to Yuletide tunes and take a holiday hayride at Lakewood Lights, where all of the buildings at the Lakewood Heritage Center will be lit up in a display of seasonal cheer. Afterward, warm up in the Country Schoolhouse and make holiday ornaments while watching holiday films.
WHEN: Dec. 6–8, 13–24 and 26–31, 2019
WHERE: Hudson Gardens & Events Center
Bundle up for a visit with Santa at Hudson Gardens in Littleton. After sharing your list with Ol' Saint Nick, sip hot chocolate as you stroll the outdoor paths lined with trees decked with more than a million twinkling lights.