50 Best Christmas Light Displays State by State

Here are the 50 best Christmas light displays in the U.S., state by state.

There is something about twinkling lights, hot cocoa in hand and Christmas music playing, right? It evokes that warm holiday feeling everyone loves. That's why holiday light shows and holiday light displays are so special to children and adults—it's a chance for everyone to pause and look at the magic all around.

And luckily, every state has a holiday light show they are known for (and usually, more than one!). We rounded up the best Christmas and holiday light shows in every state so you can plan your holiday tradition-making now.

Here are the 50 best Christmas light displays in the U.S., state by state.

Christmas Light Displays Near Me

Alabama — Huntsville Botanical Garden in Huntsville, AL

The Galaxy of Lights Festival at the Huntsville Botanical Garden in Huntsville, Alabama is a must-visit if you live in the Heart of Dixie. Starting over 25 years ago, the Huntsville Botanical Garden Christmas lights display now spans 2.5 miles and features classic holiday themes, characters, and even scenes from nature. It's open from November 11 to January 1, can be driven or walked, (even with your dog some nights!) and tickets start at $16 for the public and $13 for members if pre-purchased. Tickets at the gate start at $25 for the public and $20 for members.

Alaska — Alaska Botanical Gardens in Anchorage, AK

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If you live near Anchorage, Alaska, you know that Alaska Botanical Gardens is worth visiting at any time of the year. But particularly during the holiday season, Alaska Botanical Gardens transforms into a winter wonderland worthy of the North Pole itself. You'll have plenty of time to experience this magic as the event begins November 27 and lasts all the way through January 21! Brighter Winter Nights Tickets start at $10 for members ages 7+ and kids 6 years old and under are free.

Arizona — Glendale Glitters in Glendale, AZ

With a name like Glendale Glitters, how could you not want to attend?! Glendale Glitters is home to the largest free light display—featuring 1.6 million LED lights—in the state, and runs from November 21 until January 11. This year marks the 27th anniversary of Glendale Glitters and the display illuminates 16 blocks of the town's Historic Downtown District.

Arkansas — Lights of the Ozarks in Fayetteville, AR 

Beginning the Friday before Thanksgiving, the holiday celebration of lights in Fayetteville illuminates the Historic Square every night from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. The initial Lighting Night kicks off at 6 p.m. and is followed by a holiday parade. There are also plenty of vendors set up on the Square each night during the Lights of the Ozarks featuring winter treats, seasonal activities, holiday music and more. Lights of the Ozarks is a free public display and will run from November 18 to January 1.

California — Festival of Lights at The Mission Inn in Los Angeles, CA

Every Christmas season, Californians love visiting residential light displays such as El Segundo's Candy Cane Lane or LA Zoo Lights. While those are both popular attractions, maybe you'd like to head to a different event in hopes of experiencing something new this year. Look no further than The Mission Inn Hotel and Spa in LA and witness the castle's gorgeous interior décor. This year's 30th annual lighting festival will take place from November 25 through January 6.

Colorado — Denver Botanic Gardens in Denver, CO

Blossoms of Light is the Denver Botanic Gardens' annual holiday lights event that has been held for three decades. Participants walk through the Blossoms of Light pathway and can stop by the Hive Garden Bistro for hot cocoa and other holiday treats. This event runs from November 18 to January 7, (closed November 24 and December 25) and tickets start at $24 for non-members, $21 for members, and each ticket is limited to a 30-minute time slot.

Related: 14 Can’t-Miss Christmas Movie Classics This Holiday Season

Connecticut — Holiday Lights at Lake Compounce, CT

Connecticut is home to one of the nation's most unique light displays. In fact, it's more of an experience than a display. Lake Compounce is an amusement park turned winter wonderland during the holidays! This year will be their longest running season yet, opening every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, November 19 through December 24 and Monday through Saturday December 26 through 31. Admission starts at $39.99 for adults but you can save some money if you buy online. There are plenty of twinkling lights to enjoy as well as fun festive activities!

Delaware — Historic Odessa Candlelit Tours in Odessa, DE

Throughout the First State, Christmas light displays are abundant and in fact, Frampton Realty has put together an amazing stop-by-stop road trip for light-lookers that spans all of Delaware. However, if you want to hone in on just one area, consider taking a Historic Odessa Candlelit Tour in the 18th-century hamlet of Odessa, DE. Tours span throughout the month of December on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and you must have a reservation. On the tour, you'll walk past Historic landmarks and buildings like the National Historic Register Wilson Warner House (c. 1769), National Historic Landmark Corbit-Sharp House (c. 1774), the Stone Barn (c.1812), and of course, bear witness to a plethora of beautiful light displays.

Florida — Night of Lights in St. Augustine, FL

St. Augustine, Florida is a Historic area and as most historic areas tend to do, offers a one-of-a-kind light display each year during Christmastime. Known for its famous white light display along 20 blocks of Historic buildings, Night of Lights is celebrating its 29th year in 2022. Pro tip: The event is best witnessed, according to the website, from either the Plaza de la Constitución or The Bridge of Lions and will be open each evening from November 19 to January 31.

Georgia — Fantasy in Lights in Pine Mountain, GA

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Did you know that Georgia is home to one of the top 10 light displays in the world? Experience the wonder of one of the world's most top-rated light displays at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, which claims to feature 10 million twinkling lights across 2500 acres. This year, Fantasy in Lights is introducing a new scene called the Celebration Lake which will feature a floating combination of 30 dancing trees in honor of the event's 30th year. Tickets range from $15 to $39.95 depending on the night you choose, and while you're there, don't forget to hop on the Jolly Trolley!

Hawaii — Honolulu City Lights in Honolulu, HI

Honolulu City Lights—put on by Honolulu's city hall Honolulu Hale—usually kicks off with an electric light parade and the annual lighting of the town's Christmas tree. This year, Honolulu City Lights is inviting guests to partake in a free milk and cookies night on December 17 for its 20th year.

Idaho — Winter Wonderland Festival in Caldwell, ID

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The Winter Wonderland Festival takes place at the Indian Creek Plaza every year in Caldwell, Idaho and features all kinds of festive activities. Downtown Caldwell is lit with over a million lights and will stay lit from November 19 to January 9.

Illinois — Christkindlmarket in Chicago, IL

Chicago, Illinois is home to many various Christmas light displays, but an annual favorite has to be Christkindlmarket. An authentic and traditional German-style holiday market, Christkindlmarket will be open to the public from November 18 to December 24. Always admission free, the Christkindlmarket boasts plenty of vendors that will appeal to all the senses! From seasonal treats to holiday music and of course twinkling lights, this festival should definitely be on your to-visit list this year.

Indiana — Santa Claus, IN

In a town aptly named Santa Claus, you'll find Indiana's 1.2-mile-long Christmas LED-light display called Shining Story of Rudolph at Lake Rudolph Campground. The drive-through display runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night from November 25 to December 4 and every night December 9 through 26 (but is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day).

Iowa — Adventureland Resorts in Altoona, IA

In Altoona, Iowa, you'll find the Jolly Holiday Lights at Adventureland Resorts. Open from November 25 through January 1, the Jolly Holiday Lights display features 2.5 miles of stunning lights to feast your eyes on. What's more, 100 percent of the admission fee goes to Make-A-Wish Iowa, which sponsors the event annually. To date, they have funded over 1000 wishes! The event is also offering virtual meetings with Santa Claus as well.

Kansas — The Lights at AbilityPoint in Wichita, KA

In Sedgwick County, Kansas, The Lights at AbilityPoint is one of the most unique Christmas light displays throughout the Sunflower State. While the drive-through light display, featuring more than 1.5 million glittering lights, offers admission by donation on Mondays, a $10 fee is required to visit The Lights every other night from November 24 until December 28.

Kentucky — Lights Under Louisville in Louisville, KY

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From now until January 1, the Lights Under Louisville Christmas light display is open for business in Louisville, Kentucky. One ticket for a passenger vehicle costs $34.99 and the event starts at the Louisville Mega Cavern. Known as the world's only underground lights show, the tour rides along 17 miles of lit-up underground passageways throughout the city.

Louisiana — Holiday Trail of Lights in Natchitoches, LA

If you've spent more than five minutes in the state known for its Mardi Gras, then you know that Louisiana is big on all celebrations. Christmas, of course, is no exception. The Holiday Trail of Lights is Louisiana's statewide light display with several towns included on the trail. However, if you're going to visit just one, check out Natchitoches, the oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana Purchase Territory.  You'll find 300,000 lights and more than 100 set pieces on display in Natchitoches alone. This year is the Holiday Trail of Lights' 96th, so head out and celebrate!

Maine — Coastal Maine Botanical Garden in Boothbay, ME

Every year, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens hosts Gardens Aglow in the Boothbay peninsula of Maine. This year the event will be more traditional as they reinstate the walking tour. Tickets start at $18 for non-members, $14 for members, and the event runs from now until December 31.

Maryland — 34th Street in Hampden, MD

Nearby Baltimore, 34th Street in Hampden, Maryland—also known as Christmas Street—is known for its holiday decorations come December. The lights will be shining brightly this year from November 26 to New Year's Day and there will be plenty of food, drinks and shopping to enjoy!

Massachusetts — Zoolights at Stone Zoo in Stoneham, MA

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Walk along the zoo's 26 acres under lighted trees and see animals such as black bears, arctic foxes, lynx and reindeer. On certain nights you may even catch a glimpse of Mrs. Claus! Zoolights will be open from November 18 through January 8, (closed November 24 and December 25) and general admission for non-members starts at $12.95.

Michigan — The Big Bright Light Show in Rochester, MI

The Big Bright Light Show in downtown Rochester, Michigan, is quite a sight. From now until January 3, as you walk through the downtown area, you'll bear witness to every single building covered in more than 1 million lights in rainbow order. The result? Downtown Rochester transforms into a holiday-themed rainbow.

Minnesota — Bentleyville Tour of Lights in Canal Park, MN

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The goal of Bentleyville's Tour of Lights is to bring people together during the holiday season. The free, walk-through light display features more than 5 million lights and 20 acres of the park to walk through, as well as free hot cocoa and treats. Parking for the event is $10 per car.

Mississippi — Victorian Christmas Festival in Canton, MS

With more than 100,000 lights glowing from the town's historic buildings, the Courthouse Square carousel, a 4-story tree, an 18-foot walk-through gift box and Rudolph's playground, Canton transforms itself into an authentic Christmas village each December. Also, be sure to check out the town's Animation Museums for an animated Polar Express train and stop by Santa's Workshop to play "I Spy" and look for the elves' top 10 favorite toys!

Missouri — Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO

While visiting Silver Dollar City in Branson, you'll stumble upon one of the best holiday light displays in the state. From November 5 to December 30, An Old Time Christmas is a light spectacular at the center of Silver Dollar City. Featuring 6.5 million twinkling lights, animations, and other larger-than-life displays, the whole light show spans nine stories into the sky above.

Montana — Billings Christmas Lights in Billings, MT

Throughout Billings, Montana, you'll find residential home after residential home lit to Christmastime perfection. Featuring more than 35 glowing locations throughout the drive, the town includes everything from residential homes and lanes to landmark houses. Bring along some hot cocoa and snacks and enjoy the view!

Nebraska — Omaha Holiday Lights Festival in Omaha, NE

If you live in the Cornhusker State, check out the Omaha Holiday Lights Festival in Omaha this holiday season. Running from November 24 until January 2, the Omaha Holiday Lights Festival lights up 40 blocks of downtown Omaha with twinkling, glowing lights, running from 10th to 13th Streets and from Farnam to Jackson Streets. Come New Year's, the tradition continues, with the Holiday Lights Festival also setting off fireworks. Their Shine the Light on Hunger campaign has goals to raise the equivalent of three million meals this year. Go out and show your support!

Nevada — Glittering Lights in Las Vegas, NV

From the safety, warmth, and comfort of your car, Nevadans can celebrate the season by driving through Glittering Lights in Las Vegas at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Tickets for the drive-thru start at $29 for weekdays and $39 for any day. You can also purchase a season ticket for $129.

New Hampshire — La Salette Christmas Festival of Lights in Enfield, NH

This year, the annual Christmas lights display at the Shrine of Our Lady La Salette in Enfield, New Hampshire isn't just offering light; it's offering hope during a dark time. The website reads, "Despite the pandemic, the war in Ukraine, natural disasters, climate change, and political turmoil this year's festival will proclaim 'Jesus Christ-the living light.' Generations of men and women have all declared that, even in times of darkness, his "living light" is still shining ahead of us all". As such, the Shrine of Our Lady La Salette named this year's display "Christ: Living Light." Running from November 24 until January 1 the La Salette Christmas Festival of Lights is one of the oldest light displays throughout the Granite State. Set on 20 acres of hillside, the La Salette Christmas Festival of Lights features nativity scenes, thousands of multi-colored lights, and hundreds of decorations.

New Jersey — Storybook Land in Egg Harbor Township, NJ

In the quaint Egg Harbor Township of New Jersey, you'll find Storybook Land—a timeless, enchanting children's park that has been around since 1995. Open from November 19 to December 30, Storybook Land is now open for the holiday season, offering the Christmas Fantasy With Lights event. Santa turns the park's thousands of lights every night at 5 o'clock through December 23.

New Mexico — River of Lights in Alburquerque, NM

Throughout the U.S., there is no Christmas lights display quite like the River of Lights in Alberquerque, New Mexico. Running from November 26 through December 30, this event will host over 700 light displays, animated and 3D sculptures and millions of twinkling lights! Purchase a timed ticket starting at $14 Mondays through Thursdays and $17 Fridays through Sundays.

New York — The Shops at Hudson Yards in Manhattan, NY

<p>Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images</p>

Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images

In New York, New York, everyone tends to flock to the illuminated angels at the Channel Gardens at Rockefeller Center because they're free to visit (of course, if you want to skate underneath the tree at The Rink at Rockefeller Center, that'll cost you about $33, not including rentals). But if you want to beat the crowds and escape the weather, check out The Shops at Hudson Yards instead.

Outside of The Shops, the lights display continues with over 2 million twinkling lights across The Plaza, Edge, and Vessel, as well as almost 1,000 decorated trees across The Plaza.

Other honorable mentions throughout Manhattan include visiting the Saks Fifth Avenue outdoor light display and taking a quick trip on the D train to Dyker Heights, Brooklyn.

North Carolina — The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC

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In Asheville, NC, there's the 8,000-acre Biltmore Estate—America's largest home, which was built back in 1895. It's worth visiting all year round solely for its historical significance, but come the holiday season, it's all the more magical. From November 4 to January 7, visitors can explore the estate's luminary-lit pathways, glowing candles reflected in thousands of ornaments and warm, flickering fireplaces starting at $119 per ticket.

North Dakota — Spring Lake Park Holiday Lights Drive in Spring Lake Park, ND

The Spring Lake Park Holiday Lights Drive in North Dakota is one of the most unique light displays there is. After all, the Holiday Lights Drive has hosted several different themed nights in the past—from LEGO Night and Snoopy Gives Back to Dinosaur Night and the Grinch Gives Back Night. This year should prove just as unique with different craft nights!

Ohio — Clifton Mill in Clifton, OH

The Historic Clifton Mill, one of America's largest water-powered grist mills, has been a historical staple of Clifton, OH since 1802. Every holiday season, the Clifton Mill goes all out by transforming into a Christmas village featuring a Santa Claus Museum, a vintage toy collection, and lots and lots of lights.

OregonPeacock Lane in Portland, Oregon

One of Oregon's most beloved Christmas lights displays is Peacock Lane in Portland, OR. From December 15 to 24 each home on Peacock Lane is decorated in its own style and personality for the holiday season. You can either drive through this display, but be prepared to wait your turn, or you can walk along the sidewalks. December 15, 16 and 17 will be designated pedestrian-only nights this year and the cocoa booth is returning for 2022. Each night from December 15 through 24 cups of cocoa and hot cider are free! (While supplies last.)

Pennsylvania — Koziar's Christmas Village in Bernville, PA

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If ever there was a place that really, truly felt like it could be the real North Pole, it's certainly Koziar's Christmas Village in Bernville, PA. Nestled in the Pennsylvanian countryside, Koziar's appears as a quaint and festive village lit up by more than 1 million lights glowing in the night. In town, you'll find a toy workshop, a bakery, and a post office that only goes back and forth to Santa's address. Tickets start at $10 for kids, $12 for people ages 11+, and children 3 years old and under can attend for free.

Rhode Island — Bristol Christmas Festival in Bristol, RI

Christmas in Bristol, Rhode Island is unlike any other place... except maybe the North Pole! Light displays as part of the Bristol Christmas Festival and Grand Illumination event have been a part of Bristol since 1987. Throughout town, buildings, churches, trees, and residential homes are lit up in celebration of the season. This year, the Grand Illumination event kicks off on December 3 and is free for everyone who attends. The festival's annual Christmas Story Time event is going virtual on December 16.

South Carolina — Holiday Festival of Lights in Charleston, SC

At James Island County Park's Holiday Festival of Lights in Charleston, SC, you'll drive through three miles of a gorgeous Christmas lights display. The festival features all kinds of lights and animatronics and even has a $3 train ride that will allow you to take it all in. The festival runs nightly from now until December 31. For an additional experience, you can also book a visit with Santa Claus himself and walk away with a 5x7 souvenir photo.

South Dakota — Christmas Nights of Light in Rapid City, SD

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South Dakota may be known as the home of Mount Rushmore, but there's more to the Coyote State than just breathtaking views of the Black Hills. Especially during Christmastime. Come December, the park at Storybrook Island in Rapid City, SD, turns into a winter wonderland as part of the city's Christmas Nights of Light event. Kids will love the storybook characters walking around, drinking cocoa or cider, and looking at all the charming lights. Admission is $4 per person and runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday until December 31.

Tennessee — Cheekwood Estates & Gardens in Nashville, TN

The Holiday LIGHTS event at Cheekwood Estates & Gardens in Nashville was voted the best local event and festival in 2019. This year is no different! Still a beloved lights display by plenty of locals, Cheekwood Estates & Gardens offers a one-mile walking path of glowing lights against a backdrop of the gardens. Kids and adults alike will enjoy taking pictures by the iconic poinsettia tree and indulging in the s'more and bar stations. The Holiday LIGHTS event runs from November 19 until January 8.

Texas — Austin's Trail of Lights in Austin, TX

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The Lonestar State is home to Austin's Trail of Lights in Austin, TX—a literal trail of lights that features more than 70 Christmas-themed displays, two million lights, an artisans marketplace, and some of the city's most beloved food trucks. Pricing varies depending on the date you choose to go, and admission is free on certain dates.

Utah — Christmas in Color in South Jordan, UT

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This year, Utah's Christmas in Color drive-through display has adapted to the times, ultimately becoming the Socially Safe Drive-Thru Animated Light Show! Millions of lights twinkle against the backdrop of the Salt Lake County Equestrian Park as you drive by giant candy canes, through lit-up tunnels, and cruise past dancing snowflakes synchronized to the holiday music.

Vermont — Wassail 2020 in Woodstock, VT

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Wassail Weekend boasts the historic homes and local shops throughout Woodstock, VT that will be spectacularly lit for the season. The weekend events will be all day December 9 through 11. This calendar highlights all events happening during Wassail Weekend this year. Get ready to enjoy the craft fair, tree lightings and carriage rides at this year's Woodstock festival.

Virginia — Tacky Light Tour in Richmond, VA

If you're nearby in Richmond, VA, then you and your family will love stopping by the city's Tacky Light Tour. A residential lights display that acts as a self-guided tour that you can drive through in nearby neighborhoods, you'll see some of the gaudiest decorations homes have to offer. Think the movie Deck the Halls, but IRL.

Washington — The Lights of Christmas in Stanwood, WA

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The Lights of Christmas festival features more than one million lights in its Pacific Northwest display. There will be a light tunnel, the Cascade Splendor mountain scene and even Santa and his reindeer! Tickets start at $27 and the event will run on select dates from November 25 to December 31.

West Virginia —  Oglebay in Wheeling, WV

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Light tunnels, a meteor shower of lights and wintry scenes galore! That's what you'll find at Oglebay's Winter Festival of Lights in Wheeling, West Virginia. Running from now until January 8, Oglebay's Winter Festival of Lights: Sounds of the Season is celebrating this holiday season with its annual six-mile drive over 300 acres. There are 90 lighted scenes throughout Oglebay's Winter Festival of Lights, utilizing more than 1 million energy-efficient LED lights.

Wisconsin — Country Christmas in Pewaukee, WI

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For the largest outdoor drive-through Christmas light display in all of Wisconsin, be sure to check out County Christmas from now until January 1. With several different locations to explore—from the Country Christmas Trail featuring mile-long drive-through animated figurines and holiday scenes to the Christmas Village—tickets start at $25 and range to $45 depending on vehicle type. There are also designated walking nights as well as nights that offer wagon rides!

Wyoming — Street Railway Trolley in Cheyenne, WY

Ride in festive Christmas style while you take your Christmas lights display tour this year in Wyoming. Board the Street Railway Trolley in Cheyenne and then be transported throughout the neighborhood to check out some of the coolest local lights—available every night from Dec. 9 to Jan. 1. It's $15 a ticket for adults, $7.50 for children, and each ticket should be purchased in advance.

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