Filed under: Activities & Attractions, Amusement & Theme Parks, Holidays on the Road, Holidays on the Road, Kid-Friendly Trips
‘Tis the season for Christmas lights
‘Tis the season for Christmas light displays. Below is a selected list of ten of the best places in the U.S. Sunbelt to see Christmas lights and other seasonal displays. No guarantee, but they’re all worth a look—and don’t forget to pack your digital camera and tripod.
Dates: November 26-December 31, 2010; closed December 25
General information: Stroll through 3 million sparkling lights and over 928 displays throughout the 65-acre Garden estate. The Bellingrath Home is decorated in its holiday finery and poinsettias encompass the Gardens. Nightly choral performances held on the South Terrace.
Admission: Magic Christmas in Lights Only $12.00; Magic Christmas in Lights and Bellingrath Home Tour $20.00; tickets available for purchase online
Directions: Located 20 miles southwest of Mobile; from Interstate 10, take exit 15A (Hwy 90 West/Theodore exit). Travel approximately 2 miles and turn left at the Bellingrath billboard onto Bellingrath Road; 6 miles south on Bellingrath Road and turn left into Bellingrath Gardens.
Dates: November 18, 2010-January 1, 2011; Friday and Saturday, 5:00-10:00 p.m.; Sunday-Thursday, 5:00-9:00 p.m.
Admission: $5, seniors $4
Directions: Located Los Abrigados Resort & Spa, 160 N. Portal Lane, Sedona
102nd Annual Christmas Boat Parade
Dates: December 15-19, 2010
General information: Multi-million dollar yachts, kayaks, canoes, and other small boats light up the harbor as a dazzling array of holiday lights and music fill the air. The Christmas floats wind their way some 14 miles around the harbor to give viewers in restaurants, yacht clubs, on public beaches, and in private homes an incredible sight that has delighted millions of people for a century. The Christmas Boat Parade has been hailed as “one of the top ten holiday happenings in the nation” by the New York Times.
Directions: 2010 parade route; starts off Bay Island at 6:30 p.m. and ends at the same site at approximately 9:00 p.m.
Dates: December 17-23, 2010; December 26, 2010-January12, 2011, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
General information: A festive light display featuring more than 750,000 twinkling lights that turns the desert into a holiday winter wonderland. Special visits from Santa Claus, live music, wood-burning fireplaces, hot apple cider, hot chocolate, s’mores and more!
Directions: Located at 47900 Portola Avenue, Palm Desert
Admission: $8.00; Living Desert members, $6.25; children $5.75
Dates: November 23-December 31, 2010; 6:00-9:30 p.m.
General information: A holiday themed drive-through event at Wickham Park featuring shimmering lights and dazzling animated displays.
Directions: Located at Wickham Park, 2500 Parkway Drive, Melbourne
19th annual Fantasy in Lights
Dates: November 19-December 30, 2010 starting 6 p.m.
General information: Nestled amidst wooded landscape of Callaway Gardens, Fantasy in Lights is the Southeast’s most spectacular holiday light and sound show with more than eight million twinkling lights. This spectacular show has attracted almost two million visitors since it opened in 1992.
Directions: Located in Pine Mountain, 60 minutes southwest of Atlanta and 30 minutes north of Columbus
Admission: Rates vary with date selected and range from $16.00 to $25.00; advance sales offer a discount over same-day purchases
21st Annual Holiday Festival of Lights
Dates: November 25-December 23, 2010
General information: A 3-mile driving tour through millions of sparkling lights and hundreds of light displays at James Island County Park.
Directions: Located at James Island County Park on Riverland Drive in Charleston
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If you have visited any of the above Christmas light displays or others not listed, please leave your comments below. Your insights may help others have a fantastic holiday experience.
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