’Tis the season for hot chocolate, garland, mistletoe and—of course—Christmas lights! We’ve rounded up the best festive displays across the Metroplex, sure to bring that extra dose of cheer to your December. Gather the family and enjoy!
Editor’s note: Check back soon for 2021-2022 dates and times as they are announced.
Vitruvian Lights // Addison
Where 3875 Ponte Ave.
When Through Jan 3, 2021; lights on 5–11pm daily
What to know Stroll or drive through 12 acres of colorful trees at Vitruvian Park’s annual free holiday light display. Amid the pandemic, the park has decided not to host special events in conjunction with the festive lights, but visitors can enjoy more than 500 glittering trees wrapped with sparkling LED lights.
Holiday in the Park // Arlington
Where Six Flags Over Texas, 2201 E. Road to Six Flags St.
When Through Jan. 3, 2021; times vary by date; lights on at sundown
What to know From festive shows to elaborately decorated Christmas trees and attractions, Six Flags Over Texas is back with its holiday event. Dance with reindeer, stroll the Merry Marketplace and slide down the (real) snow-covered hill—after hitting all the rollercoasters, of course. Tickets start at $19.99 and must be reserved online.
Lights of Interlochen // Arlington
Where Interlochen neighborhood, 2001 Westwood Dr.
When Mid-December–Dec. 25, 2020 at 7pm
What to know The homeowners in this Arlington neighborhood know how to capture the spirit of the season, fueled by their annual light display contest. The area’s festive lights have become must-see attraction for families in Metroplex. Traffic is always heavy, so expect your drive through the streets to take up the whole
*Dallas Zoo Lights // Dallas
Where Dallas Zoo, 650 S. R.L. Thornton Freeway
When Through Jan. 3, 2021, 6:30–9:30pm
What to know Marvel at 1 million lights, elaborate displays, silk-covered animal lanterns, an ice palace and more at this year’s Dallas Zoo Lights—reimagined as a drive-thru event for social distancing. You can purchase pre-packaged food and drinks—like popcorn, cotton candy and hot cocoa in a Zoo Lights cup—to enjoy along your drive. Tune into the 1670 AM while you cruise to get the full experience. Prices start at $50 per car for members; $65 for nonmembers.
Highland Park Village // Dallas
Where 47 Highland Park Village
When Through Dec. 31, 2020 at sundown
What to know Enter the decorated streets of Highland Park at Preston and Mockingbird or at Preston and Armstrong for a light tour you won’t forget. For a fairytale experience, consider taking a carriage through the spectacular streets. (For more info and COVID precautions, check out services including brazoscarriage.com, highlandparkcarriagetours.comand dfwcarriages.com.)
*Holiday at the Arboretum // Dallas
Where Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Road
When Through Dec. 31, 2020; Times vary by date
What to know One of Dallas’ main holiday attractions, Holiday at the Arboretum will have you feeling all warm inside even if the weather is chilly. With festive features like 25-foot-tall Victorian-style gazebos—each representing one day of 12 Days of Christmas—and the German-inspired Christmas Village, there’s something for everyone in the family to enjoy. Tickets start at $12.
*Denton Holiday Lights // Denton
Where Denton Downtown Square, 110 W. Hickory St.; streaming on dentonholidaylighting.com
When Dec. 4, 2020 5:30–9:30pm
What to know There’s no place like Denton this holiday season, where the downtown square’s lights turn on when the sun goes down. While the light display is primarily virtual this year, families can come to a drive-up spot to take a selfie with Santa in a snow globe and pick up goodies, including a swag bag with holiday arts and crafts as well as a map to local neighborhood lightings.
Christmas in the Branch // Farmers Branch
Where Liberty Plaza, 12400 N. Stemmons Freeway
When Dec. 5, 2020–Jan. 3, 2021; skating rink at StarCenter will be open through Jan. 3.
What to know Head to Farmers Branch for a wealth of seasonal festivities. Stroll under the twinkling lights in Santa’s Village; a cinnamon-scented snowy atmosphere awaits for the Dec. 5 tree lighting (which will also feature a 2-minute fireworks show). You can also ice skate at the outdoor rink and shop the Holiday Marketplace.
Gift of Lights // Fort Worth
Where Texas Motor Speedway, 3545 Lone Star Circle
When Through Jan 3, 2021; Friday–Saturday 6–10pm, Sunday–Thursday 6–9pm
What to know Relax and enjoy the ride as your family cruises through Fort Worth’s Gift of Lights, a 2-mile light park with millions (yes, millions) of shining bulbs. This event benefits local charities such as Ronald McDonald Home and Speedway Children’s Charities. Tickets start at $30 per car.
Ho Ho Ho Holidays in the Stockyards // Fort Worth
Where Fort Worth Stockyards, 131 E. Exchange Ave.
When Through Dec. 24, 2020
What to know Enjoy a Cowboy Christmas in the Fort Worth Stockyards, with thousands of twinkling lights, a 30-foot tree, strolling carolers, socially distanced Santa photos (online reservations recommended), a rodeo ticket giveaway and more. It’s how Fort Worth does the holidays.
Christmas in the Square // Frisco
Where 8843 Coleman Blvd.
When Through Jan. 4, 2021; lights on at sundown
What to know Christmas in the Square returns for its 16th year, full of family favorites and new displays. Visitors can tune to 107.3 FM on their car radio and drive through, or listen to the music pumped through the Square while walking the free display—filled with 180,000 lights and 200 dancing snowflakes.
Prairie Lights // Grand Prairie
Where Lynn Creek Park at Joe Pool Lake, 5610 Lake Ridge Parkway
When Through Dec. 31, 2020, open nightly from 6–10pm
What to know Prepare to be dazzled with 4 million lights across two miles in this drive-thru holiday park. This year, Prairie Lights is rolling out hundreds of new displays along the path. Midway through your outing, you’ll have the chance to order drinks and treats at
a drive-thru concession stand. Tickets are $30 for a regular car pass; pay $99 for a fast pass that lets you avoid lines.
*Historic Grapevine Christmas Spectacular // Grapevine
Where Downtown Grapevine and Town Square Gazebo, South Main Street
When Through Jan. 10, 2021, 9am–11pm; lights turn on at sundown
What to know Enjoy more lights, animations and fun at this year’s free celebration in historic downtown Grapevine. See hundreds of thousands of lights up and down Main Street and daily performances by “The Chilly Dawgs”—animated snowmen; you can also hang out in Whoville at the Town Square Gazebo. All guests 10 years and older are required to wear a mask.
*Lone Star Christmas at the Gaylord Texan // Grapevine
Where Gaylord Texan Resort, 1501 Gaylord Trail
When Through Jan. 3, 2021, 6–9:30pm
What to know Explore acres of twinkling lights and décor as your family walks through the Gaylord Texan’s 50,000 square-foot outdoor attraction—filled with colorful and glowing holiday scenes. Step inside to enjoy the resort’s 4-acre indoor atrium, showcasing 2 million lights, 15,000 ornaments and a Polar Express train set. Masks and social distancing are required; tickets start at $10 and must be purchased online.
Holiday Fun at Highland Village // Highland Village
Where The Shops at Highland Village, 1701 Shoal Creek
When Through Jan. 2, 2021; light and music show on the hour from 6–9pm
What to know Prepare to be dazzled with the shopping center’s Holiday Light Show Spectacular. Featuring a 60-foot Christmas tree and 245,300 LED lights synchronized with holiday music, the show offers up plenty of cheer. And if you’re looking to make this holiday season extra memorable, take advantage of complimentary horse-drawn carriage rides Friday–Sunday now through Dec. 20 (masks required).
*Deerfield Holiday Lights // Plano
Where Between Preston Road and Coit Road
When Dec. 1–30, 2020; 7–10pm weekdays and 7–11pm on weekends
What to know This northwest Plano neighborhood has as tradition of elaborate holiday light displays. Cars and pedestrians are free to tour the streets (download a map from deerfieldplano.org for suggested routes and access points), or you can reserve a carriage to top off your evening (dfwcarriages.com).
Santa Land // Tyler
Where 11455 1-20 West
When Through Jan. 4, 2021; Open times for gift shop and park vary by day of the week
What to know No Christmas lights round-up would be complete without Santa Land, nearing its twentieth year. This huge drive-through park near Tyler beckons families from the highway with more than 2.5 million lights spread across 24 acres, including the Twirling Tunnel of Lights and dancing Christmas trees. Don’t miss the gift shop or photos with Santa. Concessions available. Arrive early.
Photo courtesy of Mark Bumgarner