7 Festive Socially Distanced, Drive-Thru Holiday Events in Miami

We know the holidays are anything but normal this year—but that doesn’t mean we can’t have fun and celebrate the season safely. All you have to do is follow these three steps: Grab your car keys, throw on an ugly sweater, and drive to one of these socially distanced Christmas light extravaganzas, including a handful of drive-thru experiences. Pro tip: Bring along a thermos of hot cocoa and a holiday playlist queued up on your phone. Don’t forget a few extra masks either.

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1. Zoo Lights

Zoo Miami’s annual Zoo Lights adds a tropical spin to the holiday experience with more than a million twinkling lights in the shape of animals and palm trees and a 26-foot LED holiday tree. Nope, it doesn’t get more Miami than that. Through December 27.

drive thru christmas lights miami santa spectacular
Santa's Spectacular/Facebook

2. Santa’s Spectacular: A Drive-thru Musical Extravaganza

Transport yourself through Candy Cane Lane and up to the North Pole as you sing along to your favorite holiday tunes while driving through Santa’s Spectacular at Tamiami Park. Those comfortable with venturing out of their cars can visit the cocktail lodge, serving up spiked festive drinks, and the holiday market, stocked with gifts made by local artisans. Through December 23.

drive thru christmas lights miami bright lights
Bright Lights Miami/Facebook

3. Bright Lights Miami

Step aside, Ultra Music Festival. There’s a new neon-filled event in town: Bright Lights Miami. Taking over Virginia Key Beach Park, this immersive drive-in and drive-thru holiday light and laser show is exciting for children and parents alike. Besides the thousands of lights, expect art installations and music. The best part? This event will stretch through the new year. Through January 10.

4. Pinecrest Gardens’ Nights Of Lights

Pinecrest Gardens is magical on a normal day—now imagine hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights scattered throughout the grounds. Walk (socially distanced, of course) through the botanical space’s Nights of Lights, ooing and ahhing at the sights. Plus, select nights include live music performances. Through January 3.

drive thru christmas lights miami miramar santa village
Courtesy of Santa'a Drive-Thru Village

5. Santa’s Drive-thru Village

Light shows, life-sized Santa Claus, snow (!!!) and dozens of elves: Santa’s Drive-Thru Village spares no expense to make the North Pole come to life like you’ve never seen it before. Drive through various themed villages, including the Elves’ Toy Factory, the Singing Carolers’ Town and Mrs. Claus’ Village. Through December 23.

6. Symphony In Lights

If you’re looking for a quick holiday light show, Gulfstream Park is it. The park’s annual Symphony of Lights features 250,000 twinkling LED lights set to the sounds of the Trans-Siberia Orchestra. From 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. nightly, 15-minute light shows begin at the top of the hour.

7. Bayfront Holiday Village

Bayfront Holiday Village has it all—from a retro skating rink and animated Christmas tree light and music shows, to the North Pole cocktail club with spiked eggnog and Irish coffee and even a festive dog park. Don’t forget: The shopping and entertainment destination—which pops up in the center of downtown Miami every winter—will maintain strict social distancing and mask-wearing protocols. Through December 22.

clarissa buch

Miami Editor

Clarissa Buch Zilberman is a writer and editor based in Miami. Focused on food, lifestyle, and travel, her work has appeared in Food & Wine, Travel + Leisure, Bon Appétit, and...