8 Festive Drive-Thru Christmas Light Events in New York and New Jersey
You know the drill by now: The holidays are going to look very different this year. But social distancing doesn’t have to put a damper on the festivities. Instead, it’s time to get creative, like checking out one of these drive-thru Christmas light events in the New York and New Jersey area. What are you waiting for? Hop in the car, grab a thermos of hot cocoa, blast the holiday tunes and let’s go for a ride.
1. Skylands Stadium Christmas Light Show in Augusta, New Jersey
This mile-long, drive-thru show located in Skylands Stadium is about as festive as it gets. Stay cozy in the comfort of your car as you pass by more than two million lights on display, plus a live nativity scene. There’s also an outdoor village and winter carnival featuring family-friendly activities, like photos with Santa, games and a s’mores pit. Buy your tickets here. Open starting November 20 through to January 3, 2021.
2. Magic of Lights in Wantagh, New York
This holiday season, Long Island’s favorite festive display is back. The 2.5-mile drive-thru Magic of Lights at Jones Beach State Park will include the blizzard tunnel, themed displays like “12 Days of Christmas” and “Winter Wonderland” and 240 feet of LED Christmas trees. Tickets are required to the event and can be purchased here. Open now through January 2, 2021.
3. Peace, Love & Lights in Bethel, New York
Located in beautiful Bethel (aka where the famous Woodstock music festival took place), you just know that this festive event is going to be good. From November 23 through January 3, the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts will host a mile-long display of holiday lights, including a 120-foot twinkle tunnel and themed areas that pay homage to the site’s iconic past (like Groovy Way). Take your drive to the next level with Santa hats, light-up necklaces and sweet treats, all available when you purchase your tickets.
4. South Jersey Holiday Light Show in Swedesboro, New Jersey
This mile-long Christmas show is fun for the whole family. Festive displays include a snowflake tunnel, a mega dragon in a Santa hat and Hanukkah lights. But our favorite part? Guests can tune in to the radio for a synched performance. Open from November 19 to December 30, but note that you have to purchase tickets in advance.
5. Riverhead Holiday Light Show in Calverton, New York
The largest holiday light show in Suffolk County is back and features dozens of dazzling displays. And this is another fun option where you can tune in to the radio for holiday music as you make your way through the illuminated attractions. Open from November 19 to December 30.
6. Holiday Light Spectacular in Middletown, New York
Earlier this season, Orange Country organized a highly popular drive-thru fair food festival featuring everyone’s favorite carnival fare (think funnel cakes, fried Oreos and candy apples). They’re now extending the festivities into winter with the Holiday Light Spectacular: A drive-thru event that takes visitors through the spectacularly lit fairgrounds and a multimedia lights show—all while savoring the delicious treats on offer (candy-coated marshmallows, anyone?). The event will run from November 27 to January 3, 2021 and you can purchase tickets here.
7. A Very Furry Christmas at Sesame Place in Langhorne, Pennsylvania
OK, so this one’s not in New York or New Jersey, but your kid’s favorite place is only 90 minutes away from NYC and will be transforming itself into a winter wonderland this holiday season with a spectacular Christmas drive-thru on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Here you’ll experience millions of twinkling lights, holiday decor, a festive soundtrack and Sesame Street's stars dressed in their winter best. We don’t know what we’re more excited about—Candy Cane Lane, with its 50-foot tunnel made up of millions of twinkling lights that resemble a night sky, or Snowflake Way, featuring a winter’s snowfall experience. And let’s not forget the illuminated nine-foot menorah in celebration of Hanukkah. Open November 21 through January 3, and tickets are required.
8. DiDonato's Magical Holiday Express in Hammonton, New Jersey
All aboard the holiday train at DiDonato’s Fun Center that will take you through millions of Christmas lights. But the fun doesn’t stop there—admission includes a meet-and-greet with Santa and his elves (plus a gift from the big man himself), bowling, a tour of the holiday village, a cookie and more. Open until December 30.