Everything’s bigger in Texas and that includes our festivals! All across the state, folks are breaking out the Wassail, lighting up the city streets and putting on their elf hats to celebrate the Holiday season! Check out these 15 festivals to make sure your December is filled with Christmas Cheer!
Light up your Christmas season with this incredible lights display at Globe Life Park in Arlington, TX from now until Dec. 31. It includes the World’s Largest Christmas Light Maze, where visitors can wander through a magical labyrinth to help Santa find his nine missing reindeer, an ice skating rink and the authentic German ChristKindl Market filled with handmade crafts and German cuisine! Find more information here.
Have a Texas-sized Christmas at this Winter Wonderland in College Station where it SNOWS every night! There’s no shortage of countrified-holiday cheer from a hayride through dazzling lights and campfire stations for roasting s’mores to a Santa Mechanical Bull Ride and tons of shopping! The festival runs until January 7 and you can purchase tickets here.
Celebrate the true meaning of Christmas at the annual live nativity scene put on by the First Baptist Church of Burnet. Wander the crowded streets of ancient Bethlehem, shop in the bustling marketplace and visit the cave where Christ was born to Mary and Joseph in a manger. The event truly brings the story of Christmas to life. Visit FBC Burnet’s website for details and dates.
“Yule” love this Yuletide event at Zilker Park, where you can wander through the 2 million lights strung across the 300+ acres of the park. Along the 1.25 mile trail are lights galore, gourmet food vendors, live music and more! The trail is open Dec. 9 – 23. Click here for more information.
Things get wild during the Holidays at the Houston Zoo. Each night, after the animals have gone to bed, the zoo comes alive with vibrant lights and Christmas cheer! As you explore, you’ll find all kinds of wonders like life-sized light-up giraffes and zebras, an enchanted forest and a train village! Zoo Lights is open until Jan. 14. Purchase tickets here.
Wimberley’s all lit up at the EmilyAnn Trail of Lights until Dec. 28! The 8-acre lights trail through this musical garden also features a Jingle Bell Express and the chance to meet Mr. Claus and Disney princesses Ana and Elsa! Check the schedule to see the list of fun activities each night.
Head to Galveston on Dec. 1 for a weekend of classic Holiday fun at the 44th Annual Dickens on the Strand event. Galveston’s main street is transformed into a Victorian Christmas party as his famous novella, A Christmas Carol, comes to life. The festival features roaming carolers, jugglers, Victorian-inspired costumes and gifts, and carts of Holiday food and drinks. This year, visitors even get the chance to meet Dickens’ great-great-granddaughter Jane Monk!
Hidalgo Festival of Lights – Hidalgo, TX
Throughout the month of December, the town of Hidalgo will be hosting live music performances, Christmas fun, a carnival and even a few snow days leading up to Christmas, and it all starts on Dec. 1 with the Illuminated Christmas Parade! In addition to the Yuletide events, the Festival of Lights also features a nine-mile lights trail that you can explore by train, trolley or from your own car! See the full schedule here.
Nine Flags Christmas Festival – Nacogdoches, TX
Head to the oldest town in Texas for the Nine Flags Christmas Festival on Dec. 2 that celebrates both Christmas tradition and Texas history. The festival includes a Victorian Christmas celebration, an Antique Ornament and Toy Exhibit, live music, a chance to mingle with Mr. & Mrs. Claus and a Holiday parade! Click here to learn more.
During the Christmas season, the Amarillo Botanical Gardens lights up with Holiday Spirit (and not to mention over 200,000 lights)! Each section of the garden in transformed into a dazzling wonderland mixed with twinkling lights displays and beautiful flowers. Christmas in the Gardens lasts until Dec. 23.
Along the banks of the Concho River in San Angelo is a 2.5 mile Tour of Lights with giant Christmas cards and Holiday scenes galore! The displays of over 3 million lights along the trail depict The Twelve Days of Christmas, a nativity scene, poinsettias and more at the Concho Christmas Celebration! On Dec. 2nd, there will be a Tree Lighting Ceremony and the Lights of Christmas Parade.
Christmas Tree Farm – Elgin, TX
There’s not much better than the smell of a fresh Christmas tree, so pick yours out at this farm in Elgin. Once you get there, hop on a hayride out to the tree field where a variety of beautiful Virginia Pine and Leyland Cypress trees are just waiting to be cut! They also have Fraser Firs imported from North Carolina (since they don’t grow in Texas) and freshly made wreaths for purchase.
Fiesta De Noche Buena – Marathon, TX
This festival in Marathon, TX, is a celebration of the Holiday Season and the Spanish culture. On Dec. 2, join in on the festivities with an outdoor tree lighting, hay rides, Children’s “folklorico” dancing, a visit from Santa and more! You can find details on the street festival here.
Wonderland of Lights – Marshall, TX
Marshall, TX, is full of holiday magic at the Wonderland of Lights until Dec. 31. Glide on the outdoor skating rink, decorate cookies, take photos with Santa in his workshop, and hop on the carousel, horse-drawn carriages or Wonderland Express for a truly festive view of the glowing Square.
During the Christmas Stroll on Dec. 1-2, the “Most Beautiful Town Square” transforms into a magical place complete with a Who-Village where the Grinch waits to greet you and the Bethlehem Village live nativity scene. There is also a Christmas Parade, tons of food and craft vendors, and you can even sit on Santa’s lap and tell him all your Christmas wishes!