With Thanksgiving officially over, let the holidays begin! Below are all the festive light shows and holiday events you need this season in DC, Maryland, and Virginia.
Enchanting Christmas in Nationals Park
November 26 to January 2
1500 South Capitol Street, SE, Washington, DC
For the first time since 2019, a huge light maze and village of Enchant Christmas returns to Nationals Park. Say “hi” to Santa or put on a pair of skates to tour the unique light display. Tickets start at $29.
1 Dec. until Jan 1. 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
301 Water Street SE, Washington, DC
This free light installation in Navy Yard features 22-foot-tall light trees and a field full of interactive circles of light that react when you step on them.
Path of Peace in the White House
Dec 4 until 1 Jan. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
White House Ellipse
The Pathway of Peace will reopen at the White House Ellipse with more than “50 state and territory trees adorned with ornaments designed by students unique to each tree.” The trail leads to the National Christmas Tree, where the lights come on every evening at sunset.
National Menorah Lighting
November 28, 3:15 pm to 5:45 pm
2110 Leroy Place NW, Washington, DC
Celebrate the start of Hanukkah with music, celebration and the lighting of the menorah during this free event (registration required).
The Sculpture Garden Ice Rink
Nov 19 – Mar 6
11 am to 9 pm Sunday to Thursday, 11 am to 11 pm Friday to Saturday
7th St and Constitution Ave NW, Washington, DC
Spend a few hours skating at the National Portrait Gallery. Prices vary by age and rental options.
Maxwell Park Navy Yard
November 26 to January 1
1346 4th St SE, Washington, DC
This year’s popular wine bar Maxwell Park is going all out on the Christmas theme, complete with ornaments, wreaths and huts filled with candy. Seats at the pop-up, designed by the woman behind Baltimore’s Miracle on Seventh Street, are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations are required for the sugar cane greenhouses outside.
The Wharf Holiday Boat Parade
Saturday, December 4, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
760 Maine Ave SW, Washington, DC
Spend a night on the wharf and watch more than 45 boats covered in holiday lights cruise the Potomac River. At 8pm, catch a fireworks finale. This event is free to attend.
Holiday market in the center
Nov 19. until 23 Dec., 12.00 am to 20.00 pm
F Street NW between 7th and 9th Street, Washington, DC
Make a stop at this classic market to pick up some Christmas gifts for yourself or a loved one and stay for a while to enjoy fresh food and live entertainment.
Vacation in the US Botanic Garden
November 24 – January 2, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
100 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC
Enjoy holiday greenery with colorful poinsettias, winter berries and an open-air train display that runs through a variety of farming scenes from around the world. The garden is free to visit.
Winter Wonderland in Bethesda
December 4, 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
7182 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, Maryland
Watch an expert turn a block of ice into a work of art with a chainsaw and enjoy a student vacation concert at this free-to-entry event.
Zoo Lights at the Maryland Zoo
November 19 – January 2, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
One Safari Place, Baltimore, Maryland
Since the district’s National Zoo has canceled Christmas lights this year, head to Baltimore to see more than 100,000 lights arranged in festive displays. Ticket prices vary per activity.
I love Christmas movies™
November 26 – December 31, 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM
201 Waterfront Street, National Harbor, Maryland
Walk through recreations of scenes from iconic Christmas movies at Gaylord National. Tickets start at $33. Other holiday festivities at the hotel include ice skating, ice tubs, and ice bumper cars.
Miracle on 34th Street in Baltimore
Nov 27 – Dec 31
726 West 34th St. Baltimore, Maryland
Admire the neighborhood that teams up every year to cover the area with unparalleled Christmas decorations in tribute to the classic holiday movie.
Silver Spring Christmas Market
December 5, 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Veterans Plaza, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring, Maryland
Shop for some locally made Christmas gifts or crafts at this free holiday fair.
Symphony of Lights
November 25 to January 2, times vary
10475 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Columbia, Maryland
Drive through a classic light screen synced to music on your radio, or walk through the screen on special occasions. Tickets are $20 for drive-through nights and vary for walk-through nights.
The Waterfront National Harbor Vacation
Dates and times vary
Stop by a pop-up gingerbread bar, enjoy Saturday fireworks, and watch the National Harbor’s 54-foot tree-light display.
Holiday Weekend in Alexandria
Dec 3 to Dec 5
According to Oprah, enjoy a Scottish Christmas parade, a boat parade with Christmas lights and much more in one of the ‘best magical Christmas towns’ around!
Bull Run Festival of Lights
November 11 to January 2, 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM
5400 Ox Road, Fairfax Station, Virginia
Ride through 4 miles of Christmas lights at Bull Run, then spend some time walking through their Christmas village and carnival. Tickets are $30 per car when purchased online. Holiday nights take place on November 25, December 24, December 25, December 31 and January 1.
WinterFest at Kings Dominion
November 20 to January 9, 5pm – 10pm
16000 Theme Park Way, Doswell, Virginia
Just in time for the holidays, this theme park transforms itself into a holiday experience for everyone, complete with a 300-foot-tall tree, ice rink and light galore. Tickets to Winterfest start at $32, but you can skate for as little as $15.
Holiday Road Leesburg
November 26 – January 2, 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.
17195 Southern Planter Lane, Leesburg, Virginia
Grab some food and hot drinks before walking through an 800-foot route of lights and holiday displays — tickets start at $29.99.
November and December
3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon, Virginia
Watch a variety of holiday events at the George Washington estate, including holiday displays and fireworks, candlelit tours, musical performances, and more. Tickets vary per activity.
Winter walk of light
November 11 – December 9, 5pm to 10pm
9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court, Vienna, Virginia
Take a short walk through this half-mile path of festive lights in the Meadowlark Botanical Gardens.
Miracle on Exchange St.
Opens November 29, 11am to 12 noon
20413 Exchange St., Ashburn, Virginia
This holiday pop-up bar offers festive decorations and themed drinks like the Snowball Old Fashioned and the Christmaspolitan. A similar pop-up bar has opened in DC at Death Punch Bar.
Sippin’ Santa at Tiki Thai
Opens November 29, 11am to 2am
12100 Sunset Hills Road Suite 107 Reston, Virginia
Shop for a round of Yule Log Grog or Kris Kringle Kolada at this tropical holiday pop-up bar. Sippin’ Santa can also be found on the Archipelago in DC