Every year, Trekaroo helps families asking, “What are the family-friendly Christmas events near me?” Whether you are doing some holiday travel to an exciting new destination or looking for local Christmas events, you’ve come to the right place. Our team of fun-loving families is on an annual crusade to bring you the all the best Christmas attractions and holiday activities near you!
Are you’re thinking of visiting a theme park during the holiday season? You’ll find a little extra magic sprinkling down during the holidays. Check out our special section on theme park holiday guides below. And if you’re traveling during the holidays as a family to see family or to just get out of town, don’t miss our holiday travel tips from other families who have braved the air and the roads during the holidays.
Now, let’s explore local Christmas events across the United States and Canada. And if you’re curious, here are some of Europe’s best Christmas markets as well.
Table of Contents
WEST COAST CHRISTMAS EVENTS
Southern California and the Southwest
In Southern California, some of the Christmas attractions you might find yourself at include ice skating on the beach in San Diego, watching holiday boat parades in Los Angeles, or taking in the magic & “snow” at Disneyland. While Southern California may lack cold weather, it makes up for it with Christmas events filled with wonder, awe, and holiday cheer.
There may not be snow on the ground, and the shining sun may make it feel like the perfect 75 degrees, but decorations are popping up at every corner and special holiday events are being held almost daily.
With the holiday season in full swing, you won’t find much snow, if any, but you will find everything else you need to get you into the holiday spirit in Palm Springs, CA. Averaging 350 sunny days a year, Palm Springs weather makes it hard for even the biggest Scrooge to say Bah Humbug! Most people think of snow blanketing the ground during the holiday season, but for us SoCal residents, what we lack in snow we make up for in spirit.
It may not ever really feel like winter in San Diego, but despite our near-perfect weather there is still plenty to do to celebrate the holiday season. Visit Santa, ice skate near the beach, see real (ok, man-made) snow and more.
When Disney combines the celebratory fun of the winter holidays with fantasies come to life inside their parks, the result is pure magic.
In Northern California, families love cutting down fresh Christmas trees at numerous u-cut Christmas Tree farms near San Francisco and riding with Santa on a train. You can also travel back in time at Christmas events like Victorian Christmas, or frolic through white-capped mountains full of playful powder. San Francisco and Sacramento’s urban core are full of Holiday and Christmas activities.
A world of celebration awaits your family this holiday in Santa Rosa, California. Travel from Mexico to Italy through different cultural festivities, listen to the sounds of Germany and Ireland, and watch the dancers of Moscow perform the highly anticipated Nutcracker, an event that will surely become a family tradition.
San Francisco’s got it all for the holidays: ice skating, candy decorations, Victorian era villages, Nutcracker teas, and even light peeping aboard a trolley car! Check out our favorite holiday attractions in the City.
In the spirit of holiday sharing here are Trekaroo’s top picks for holiday activities in Northern California that are perfect for creating special days that make for wonderful memories.
A little rain and a little snow, who knows what the Christmas season might bring in the Pacific Northwest. But, what you can be assured to find is lots of holiday cheer! Seattle Christmas events at the zoo and Winterfest at Seattle Center are always popular, but the entire region has something to get excited about. Here are our favorite family-friendly Christmas activities in Seattle, Portland, and Vancouver.
During the holiday season, Vancouver, Whistler, and Victoria, British Columbia all come alive with festive sights, sounds, and smells. Here are some great picks if your family wants to get out and enjoy the holiday spirit!
In December, there’s suddenly so much to do in Seattle that you barely even notice the rain anymore. Hurray for holidays in Seattle! To keep you and your family entertained, here are some of our favorite Seattle Christmas events.
EAST COAST CHRISTMAS EVENTS
Northeast and the Mid-Atlantic
Christmas in the Northeast conjures up traditional images of twinkling tree lights white with snow, door to door caroling, and wintry streets primed with shoppers looking for the perfect gift. What about ice-skating in New York City? Find your favorite Christmas activities in these historic cities.
Christmas in New England conjures up traditional images of twinkling tree lights white with snow, door to door caroling, and wintry streets primed with shoppers looking for the perfect gift. All of this and more can be experienced in and around one of the hearts of New England: the city of Boston.
Temperatures have fallen in the Toronto area, the days are shorter, and there’s a pervasive feeling that autumn is over and winter will be arriving shortly. Along with the nip in the air, there’s also a festive feeling as holiday displays appear in shop windows and the malls fill with the sound of carols. There might not be any snow on the ground yet but Toronto is ready to celebrate the holidays.
There is nothing more magical than the streets of New York City during the holidays. It kicks off with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and ends with the ball drop in Times Square. Look anywhere and everywhere to find a festive touch. Classic holiday and Christmas events in New York City are a favorite tradition that families and kids of all ages enjoy time and time again.
As the weather turns colder and the fall decorations and turkey leftovers have been put to rest, it’s time to start looking forward to the December holiday season. Tree lightings, concerts, live performances, and more delight families in the D.C. metro area.
We were fortunate enough to enjoy the opening weekend of holiday festivities in Williamsburg, VA, and they definitely know how to deck the halls! Planning a holiday excursion to the beautiful Historic Triangle? Here are some must-sees and dos for your family!
Picture this: families all bundled up drinking hot chocolate and whirling around an outdoor ice skating rink lit up by a 65-foot Christmas tree. The clippity-clop of horse hooves pulling carriages is faintly noticeable in the distance, and fireworks light up the sky to the beat of popular Christmas songs.
The holiday season is a great time to reconnect with your family and take time to enjoy the festivities with your kids. In Philly, there are so many family-friendly activities it is hard to choose! After visiting these destinations you are sure to leave with a touch of holiday spirit.
Headed to Cancun for the holidays? Lucky you! Here’s the scoop on where to meet up with Santa, find festive celebrations, taste yummy eats, and discover some kid-centered fun in Cancun during the 2014 holiday season!
FLORIDA AND THE SOUTH CHRISTMAS EVENTS
Enjoy southern charm and hospitality during the Christmas season. Here are some of our favorite holiday activities in Florida, Tennessee, Georgia, and South Carolina.
Throw on a scarf and bundle up your kiddos, it’s time for a Christmas adventure as you celebrate 12 days of Christmas around Atlanta!
CHRISTMAS EVENTS IN MIDDLE AMERICA
Stunning snow-capped mountains of America’s mountain region are the backdrop for family fun. You’ll find incredibly detailed light displays, community outreach opportunities, and fantastic Christmas events in Utah, Colorado, and even Carson City.
The snow has hit the ground more than once, which means it’s nearly holiday season in Colorado! Families with kids know that means all varieties of fun holiday activities to celebrate the snow, and the growing excitement of family gatherings and community celebrations.
My family visited Nevada’s capital city at the start of its holiday season and experienced a cozy city alive with lights, holiday cheer, and variety of family-friendly activities. We encountered charming, old-fashioned merchants and gracious locals eager to chat.
Salt Lake City becomes a magical winter scene surrounded by the stunning snow-capped Wasatch Mountains each holiday season. The scene is idyllic, with a pile of holiday cheer on top!
Midwest & Texas
From visiting with Santa at the top of the world to down-home traditions and fantastic light displays, Chicago and the Midwest offer plenty for celebrating the season. Don’t miss the Texas-sized Christmas fun down south.
If you’re willing to brave some real wintry weather in a true wonderland, you’ll have many options for outdoor and indoor fun and festive activities. Here are some favorite Christmas Events in the Twin Cities that locals and visitors alike enjoy!
Christmas events in Austin are overflowing with live music, iconic Austin food, and funky-meets-traditional holiday entertainment for the whole family. Stroll through the Trail of Lights at Zilker Park or…
From lights and lights festivals to holiday performances to unique quaint towns, Milwaukee has it all! Check out these fun, family activities perfect for the entire family and make lasting memories for years to come. Happy holidays!
Chicago goes all out spreading the holiday cheer! Whether you need to pay a visit to Santa, enjoy a peaceful ride or fun-filled walk through a lights display, or catch a holiday performance, one thing is for sure-any of these will surely invoke the holiday spirit.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas all over the Gulf Coast of Texas with big city lights and fabulous shopping opportunities. Finding the spirit of the season with kids means lots of fun excitement with visiting Santa, watching eye-popping light displays, and visions of dancing sugar plums.
What better way to spend the holiday season than at America’s Christmas hometown, Santa Claus, Indiana?
HOLIDAY TRAVEL TIPS
Traveling for the holidays is always exciting, but it does present extra challenges to families during this busy travel season. You are more likely to experience packed flights and delays. Trekaro families have been in your shoes and share their tips on how to smooth out the bumps of holiday travel with kids. Here are packing tips for winter holiday travel.