The 36 Best Christmas Light Displays Across the Country

‘Tis the season for festive tunes, cheesy Hallmark movies and dazzling holiday decorations. For the latter, we’re happy to report that you can easily enjoy spectacular displays without having to string up the lights yourself. From Brooklyn, New York to Riverside, California, we’ve rounded up the best Christmas light displays across the country so you can enjoy a festive spectacle in your own neck of the woods. Or hey, why not hit the road to check out a sparkling set-up or two nearby? You may even pass by some of the most festive Christmas towns in the U.S. while you’re at it. Happy holidays, y’all.


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Michael Loccisano /Getty

1. Brooklyn, New York: Dyker Heights Christmas Lights

If you’re in the Big Apple for the holidays, be sure to hop a train to the Dyker Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, where you’ll find one of the city’s finest light shows. This residential enclave goes all out for Christmas with extravagant displays that attract throngs of visitors every year, and can be enjoyed on foot, with or without a guided tour, or by car (just don’t expect to find parking if you decide to drive).

christmas lights displays festival of lights at the mission inn
MediaNews Group/The Riverside Press-Enterprise via Getty Images

2. Riverside, California: Festival Of Lights At The Mission Inn

Every year, Riverside’s famous Mission Inn hotel opens its grounds to the public for one of the finest holiday festivals in the country, with millions of lights covering the grounds, firework displays and decorations galore. Check it out on the weekend for a lively scene with street vendors and other attractions or go on a weekday for a somewhat calmer atmosphere. The festival runs for six weeks from November 26th through January 6th this year.

christmas lights displays glittering lights at las vegas motor speedway
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

3. Las Vegas, Nevada: Glittering Lights At Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Las Vegas might not get too many white Christmases, but the holiday spirit on display at the motor speedway more than makes up for it. This 2 ½ mile driving tour features numerous tunnels decorated with oodles of colorful, twinkling lights—a breathtaking show that costs only $20 per car. Open now until January 1st.

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4. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Longwood Gardens

The pathways, trees and lake at Longwood Gardens conservatory are all aglow with half a million Christmas lights and cozy fire pits during this annual display, which can be enjoyed any day of the week between November 19th and January 9th.

5. Duluth, Minnesota: Bentleyville Tour Of Lights

Over four million lights are on display at Duluth, Minnesota’s sprawling 20-acre park during this yearly walk-through festival that’s open now through December 27th, where kids can also score a photo with Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Best of all, the event is completely free, though food and toy donations to the Salvation Army are encouraged and accepted on-site.

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Wolfgang Kaehler /Getty Images

6. Leavenworth, Washington: Christmas Lighting Festival

Head to the Leavenworth’s Village of Lights Christmastown celebration any day of the week this holiday season to enjoy the many attractions—including live entertainment, carolers, gingerbread house displays, photos with Santa, a festive market and over half a million lights.

christmas lights displays candy cane lane
Bob Berg /Getty Images

7. Woodland Hills, California: Candy Cane Lane

Hop in your car and drive very slowly down Lubao and Oxnard streets in Woodland Hills, California, where homeowners put up some seriously impressive holiday displays featuring dazzling lights, animated figures and artificial snow.

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Anadolu Agency /Getty Images

8. New Haven, Connecticut: Fantasy Of Lights

Goodwill of Southern New England puts on a spectacular mile-long drive-through light display in Lighthouse Point Park every year through December 31st. Tickets cost $10 per car and all proceeds go to the charitable organization.

christmas lights displays illumination at morton arboretum
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9. Lisle, Illinois: Illumination At Morton Arboretum

From November 20th until January 2nd, you can take a stroll through the 50-acre Morton Arboretum to enjoy festive music, colorful lanterns and the sweeping light displays that set the multitude of majestic trees aglow. Once you’ve explored, be sure to hit up one of the many concession stands and swing by a fire pit to make your own s’mores for dessert.

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New York Daily News Archive /Getty Images

10. Bronx, New York: Holiday Lights At The Bronx Zoo

Plan an evening visit to the Bronx Zoo between November 19th and January 9th and you will be rewarded with a walk-through experience that features glowing animal sculptures, holiday decorations, entertainment, and immersive light displays everywhere you look.

11. Fayetteville, Arkansas: Lights Of The Ozarks

Hot cocoa, festive music and visits with Santa are on offer every evening during this yearly festival that starts on November 19th and ends January 2nd in which half a million lights sparkle in the downtown square of Fayetteville, Arkansas.

christmas lights displays clifton mill
Clifton Mill/Facebook

12. Clifton, Ohio: Clifton Mill

Each year, this historic Ohio mill decorates its grounds with over four million lights and hosts numerous festive attractions, including a synchronized light and music show, Santa Claus museum, miniature village and more.

christmas lights displays blossoms of light at the denver botanic gardens
Helen H. Richardson/Getty Images

13. Denver, Colorado: Blossoms Of Light At The Denver Botanic Gardens

The Denver Botanic Gardens becomes a sparkling winter wonderland for the holidays, featuring a tunnel of animated, flashing light and colorful displays surrounding all of the many walking paths. Open now through January 8th.

christmas lights displays danvers lights on arthur street
Richard Berkowitz/Getty Images

14. Danvers, Massachusetts: Danvers Lights On Arthur Street

Head to the ‘burbs of Boston, specifically Arthur Street in Danvers, where the folks don’t mess around when it comes to Christmas. Each year, the houses light up with mind-blowing holiday displays that can be enjoyed by foot or from the comfort of your car.

15. Syracuse, New York: Lights On The Lake

Lights on the Lake, a two mile long drive-thru event in the Finger Lakes of New York, boasts massive, animated light displays, twinkling forests, and a grand finale that will take your breath away. This festive affair is open every day from November 15th until January 14th and it’s not to be missed.

16. Charleston, South Carolina: Holiday Festival Of Lights

James Island County Park turns into Christmastown, USA for an annual festival of lights. Here you’ll find twinkling walking trails, holiday markets, drive-through light displays, festive train rides and even a ‘Santa’s Village’, where kids can get their photo taken with good ol’ St. Nick. Visit now through December 31st.

17. Branson, Missouri: Christmas In Midtown At Silver Dollar City

A walking tour of Silver Dollar City during the holiday season will leave you feeling like you stepped into a fairytale. Over 1.5 million lights twinkle at this midtown attraction, which boasts towering nine story-high displays and fantastic animated spectacles.

christmas lights displays festival of lights
Natchitoches Christmas/Facebook

18. Natchitoches, Louisiana: Festival Of Lights

More than 300,000 lights and 100 set pieces are on display at the stunning festival of lights in Natchitoches, Louisiana, which spans the entire six-week holiday season and begins on the Saturday before Thanksgiving.

19. Portland, Oregon: The Grotto’s Festival Of Lights

Stop by the Grotto in Portland from November 26th through December 30th for some Christmas cheer that includes more than two million lights, live entertainment and lots of festive music, from carolers to nightly holiday concerts.

20. Asheville, North Carolina: Christmas At The Biltmore

The holiday festivities are up and running both day and night at the always impressive Biltmore estate, where 100 trees will be decorated, and the grounds decked out with over 100,000 lights and various Christmas displays to celebrate the season. Open until January 9th.

21. Palm Desert, California: Wildlights At The Living Desert Zoo And Gardens

The pathways and tunnels of this Palm Desert zoo sparkle with over a million holiday lights and life-size animal lanterns during this seasonal celebration. If you visit, be sure to check out the festive model train, which runs on over 3,300 feet of track. (Pretty cool, right?) Open until December 30th.

22. New Orleans, Louisiana: Celebration In The Oaks

Score tickets to the Celebration in the Oaks, an annual NOLA tradition of more than 30 years, and you’ll be treated to a 2 ¼ mile driving tour with over one million lights, plus unlimited rides at the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park and access to the botanical garden’s outdoor bar. Best of all, if you show up for this holiday fundraiser that’s open between November 25th and January 2nd, you’ll be supporting the beautification and maintenance of City Park, a New Orleans gem that boasts the largest grove of mature oak trees in the world.

23. Atlanta, Georgia: Garden Nights, Holiday Lights

Atlanta’s 30-acre botanic garden comes to life every November through January 15th with supersized fairytale-themed light displays, luminescent sculptures, glowing groves, flower walks and more during this fan-favorite holiday festival.

christmas lights displays enchanted forest of light at descanso gardens

24. La Canada Flintridge, California: Enchanted Forest Of Light At Descanso Gardens

Rainbow-colored lights are projected onto the stately oak trees of Descanso Gardens, creating a forest full of Christmas magic that you can explore from November 21st until January 9th this holiday season.

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25. Baltimore, Maryland: Miracle On 34th Street

This festive extravaganza has been taking place for more than 70 years on West 34th street in Baltimore, where residents deck their homes out with countless twinkling lights and whimsical holiday displays for the public to enjoy on foot or by car.

christmas lights displays koziar s christmas village
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26. Bernville, Pennsylvania: Koziar’s Christmas Village

The landscape, buildings and gift shops of Koziar’s Christmas village sparkle with thousands of festive lights—a miniature fairytale city nestled in the quiet countryside of Bernville, Pennsylvania. Open from November through January 1st.

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James Roberts / EyeEm/Getty Images

27. St. Augustine, Florida: Nights Of Lights

In addition to the multitude of dazzling lights and stunning holiday tree, this year's Nights of Lights festival in St. Augustine features dance and orchestral performances on select evenings. Visit now until January 30th.

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Lights Under Louisville

28. Louisville, Kentucky: Lights Under Louisville

Take a trip down under—underground, that is—for a truly unique holiday experience in Louisville, Kentucky. This festive light show consists of a 30-minute driving tour through 17 miles of sparkling underground passages, known as the MEGA Cavern. Open now through January 2nd.

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Kentucky Horse Park Foundation

29. Lexington, Kentucky: Southern Lights

Kentucky Horse Park’s holiday tradition boasts a festive village where families can enjoy model train displays, live animals, and visits with Santa from now until December 31st. As for the lights, there are over a million of them that will dazzle you during the driving tour.

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Kimberly Brotherman /Getty Images

30. Austin, Texas: Trail Of Lights

Another beloved drive-thru event, the Trail of Lights in Austin is a festive joyride open from November 27th until December 31st that features more than two million twinkling lights and plenty of holiday magic.

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Bellingrath Garden & Homes

31. Theodore, Alabama: Magic Christmas In Lights At Bellingrath Gardens

Get ye to the Gulf Coast to see this 65-acre garden estate turn into a winter wonderland with over a thousand whimsical set pieces, numerous elaborate and hand-crafted holiday scenes and over three million Christmas lights on display. Open November 26th until January 5th.

christmas lights displays gardens aglow at the coastal maine botanical gardens
Portland Press Herald /Getty Images

32. Boothbay, Maine: Gardens Aglow At The Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens

From now until January 1st, explore the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens by car for a special and oh-so festive viewing experience with more than 650,000 scintillating Christmas lights on display.

33. Hershey, Pennsylvania: Hersheypark’s Candy Cane Lane

The famous HersheyPark in Pennsylvania hosts a stunning holiday event from now until January 2nd in which Candycane Lane is illuminated with some 600 festive light displays and over five million lights that visitors can view from their vehicle. Once the driving tour is done, check out the rest of the festivities, which include amusement park rides, dazzling walking trails and, of course, lots of chocolate.

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Holiday Lights Fantasia/Facebook

34. Hartford, Connecticut: Holiday Light Fantasia

Hanukkah, New Year’s, Christmas and other seasonal holidays are represented in the beautiful light displays of this drive-thru event in Hartford, Connecticut, which spans two miles of Goodwin Park.

35. Adairsville, Georgia: Barnsley Resort’s Light Up The Holidays

You can expect the grounds of this North Georgia resort to sparkle with one million lights during the holiday season. This historic estate also hosts an array of family-friendly holiday activities, including breakfast with Santa and festive crafting workshops.

christmas lights displays abq biopark river of lights
ABQ Biopark

36. Albuquerque, New Mexico: Abq Biopark River Of Lights

This botanical garden holds a holiday fundraiser from November 27th through Decemeber 30th called the River of Lights, an enormous walk-through spectacle with hundreds of festive displays and millions of twinkling lights to feast your eyes upon.

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