THE HOLIDAY season is in full swing, and people are decking their houses and halls to match.
Here’s an inside look at some of the most impressive holiday light display destinations in the US and how to see them.
During the holiday season, the city of St. Augustine lights up and becomes a beacon of light as it hosts its annual Nights of Lights holiday display.
Visitors and residents alike are treated to a wonderland of lights adorning the city, beginning at the Plaza de la Constitución, with its stunning holiday tree and grand oaks strung with lights, and stretching out to illuminate all of St. Augustine’s historic district.
During this special time of year, the downtown buildings take on a glow of holiday cheer, with millions of twinkling white lights covering the historic sites, bed and breakfasts, museums, restaurants, and shops of America’s oldest city.
Accommodations in St. Augustine start at $68/night.
Built in 1892 by wealthy northern businessman Thomas Mellon, The Historic Hut is a place where families can enjoy each other and the good life without distractions.
Those travelin’ down to Dixie sunny shores need to stop by Theodore, Alabama – home to the fabulous Magic Christmas in Lights show at Bellingrath Gardens.
Voted one of USA Today’s “10 Best Botanical Garden Holiday Light Displays,” this Gulf Coast holiday tradition allows guests to stroll through a dazzling light display that features more than 1,100 set pieces, 3 million lights, and 16 scenes throughout the 65-acre Garden estate.
In addition, the Bellingrath Home is decorated in its holiday finery and enhanced with beautiful poinsettias.
Accommodations in Theodore start at $140/night.
Have a silent, restful night at this private three-bedroom bayfront villa located just 15 minutes away from downtown Mobile and 25 minutes from Bellingrath Gardens.
SANTA CLAUS, INDIANA
There is no place like Santa Claus, Indiana for the holidays.
The town, named after the big red man himself, hosts a variety of events throughout the season including one of the most famous light shows in the country, The Santa Claus Land of Lights, featuring 1.2 miles of Christmas lights that tell the story of Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer.
This event is part of the three-weekend Santa Claus Christmas Celebration, a town-wide celebration full of festive events for the entire family.
Accommodations in Santa Claus start at $59/night.
The Santa Claus Land of Lights show takes place nightly at Lake Rudolph RV Resort and Campground where guests can rent this festive two-bedroom cottage with a full kitchen and plenty of on-site activities for the whole family.
Although the Christmas classic was filmed in New York City, Baltimore, Maryland is where there really is a miracle on 34th Street.
In 1947, after seeing the movie, Baltimore resident Bob Hosier was inspired to place a string of lights on a tree in the family yard and encouraged others on the street to participate in the yearly tradition.
The event takes place annually on the 700 block of 34th Street (between Chestnut Avenue and Keswick Road) in Baltimore’s Hampden community.
Today, most of the houses on the block participate, uniquely decorating their homes with holiday cheer.
One of its most famous participants was renowned artist Jim Pollock, who created Christmas trees out of hubcaps and snowmen out of bicycle wheels.
Accommodations in Baltimore start at $44/night.
This chic downtown Maryland brownstone apartment is a great space for couples looking to enjoy everything Baltimore has to offer.
Minnesota residents know the holiday season has begun when lights turn on at the Bentleyville Tour of Lights.
With lighted tunnels and pathways that lead visitors past themed displays depicting Split Rock Lighthouse, an ore ship, the Aerial Lift Bridge, and everything from scenes from the Nativity to the Island of Misfit Toys, guests are left in awe by the more than 4 million lights in every color.
Tickets to the event include complimentary hot cocoa, cookies, popcorn, and roasted marshmallows.
Accommodations in Duluth start at $72/night.
With spectacular views of Lake Superior, Duluth’s famous Aerial Lift Bridge and Canal Park, this furnished four-bedroom, two-bath vacation home is the perfect place to relax after walking in this winter wonderland.
Christmas in Branson is an annual tradition not to miss.
This amazing city fully embraces holiday cheer and brings some of the greatest shows, light displays, and activities to celebrate the season.
Christmas light displays can be found all throughout the Branson area.
The town hosts several driving tours that are sure to brighten any trip, and visitors can experience light displays while walking down the Branson Landing.
Silver Dollar City is home to the largest Christmas light display in this area called An Old Time Christmas, and in the park at Midtown, visitors can experience a holiday light display with over 6.5 million lights.
Accommodations in Branson start at $62/night.
Just five minutes from downtown Branson and 15 minutes from Silver Dollar City, this luxurious three-bedroom, two-bathroom condo with a full kitchen and upscale amenities has everything families need to enjoy Christmastime in Missouri.
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