The greatest of seasons is soon upon us! If you’ve been in two minds about where to go to celebrate Christmas, you’ve come to the right place. We will list off some of the most breathtaking USA locations teeming with holiday spirit.
We’re kicking off this list strong, starting with the Windy City. Chicago is rife with all sorts of activities as is, but come Christmas time, and the city is alight with wonder.
If you’re in the mood for some jaw-dropping light play, make sure you drop by the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival. It’s not the only show in town of its kind, though. Lincoln Park’s Zoo Lights are equally mesmerizing, and Andersonville’s St. Lucia Festival of Lights is hardly a pushover.
Millennium Park is home to the Christmas Tree Lighting, a tradition spanning back over a century. It’s undoubtedly a magnificent event. The Museum of Science hosts the Christmas Around the World event if you’re in the mood for a mix of learning and wonderment. There’s also Navy Pier, where you can indulge in the Industry and Winter WonderFest.
Chicago is massive and chock full of fascinating places, so these are just some of the wonders you can encounter there. Nevertheless, you can’t go wrong by spending Christmas in this marvelous city.
New York City
The Big Apple is practically the capital of the world at this point, so it’s hardly a surprise that it sports more Christmas-themed events than one could visit in a lifetime, let alone a single season. All the same, we’ll do our darndest to point you to the most worthwhile festivities.
We wouldn’t do the city justice if we failed to mention the stunning Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. It’s a sight that draws in thousands of people daily, and just one look at it explains why. But if you’re more of a roving type, then you’ll definitely enjoy the Christmas Walking Tour. It takes you on a route from Rockefeller Center all the way to Radio City Music Hall. Needless to say, it’s brimming with inspiring vistas.
You also might want to look into Dyker Heights, the suburban area in Brooklyn. The residents there take their lights and decorations seriously, and you certainly won’t feel let down by their efforts.
Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
For a little more lowkey but nonetheless inspired holiday experience, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, is a safe bet. It abounds with lovely winter wonderland scenery, which has people coming back year after year.
One of Elkhart Lake’s main attractions must be the Old World Christmas Market. There, you’ll be able to relish in fine luncheoning with Santa himself and horse-drawn wagon rides to name but a few activities.
But if you’re one of those people who pine for the times of old, the Wade House Historic Site will give you solace in spades. This place is a bona fide time machine, taking you all the way back to the 19th century. Ride on jingle-bell-laden carriages and get a photograph with a Victorian-time Santa Claus!
Jackson Hole, Wyoming
The more outdoorsy types among you would definitely love Wyoming’s Jackson Hole. It’s a darling ski town with plenty to see and do, but Christmas time is when the town truly shines.
During the season, all the resorts ramp up the hospitality with room delivery of trees, wreaths, cookies, and eggnog. You’ll also be treated with carriage rides that weave along the entire property in all its splendorous beauty.
Some other organizations also offer engaging Christmas-themed pastimes. Both Teton Village Association and Jackson Hole Mountain Resort provide a slew of activities. If cookie and tree decorating, ice skating, and skiing in the company of Santa Claus sound like your thing, you won’t be disappointed.
Cape Cod, MA
Cape Cod is home to a special kind of magic come Christmas. There’s a barrel full of attractions that you can enjoy in this wonderful oceanside retreat. Once you’ve seen old St. Nick arrive by boat to a glorious welcome, you’ll understand precisely what we mean.
The Falmouth Christmas Parade is a must-see in Cape Cod. The festivities are positively filled with merriment that celebrates this holiday season. And various rides, tours, museums, and other such delights promise to entertain you throughout your stay.
You’ll also see lines of department stores that will have you shopping (window or otherwise) for hours. The arts are alive and well in Cape Cod, and there’s a literal treasure trove of unique finds to expect at Christmas.
North Pole, Alaska
Where better to spend Christmas than at the very homeplace of Santa Claus? North Pole, Alaska, is but one of several places claiming that they house the true Santa, but it certainly has a lot going for it being right.
The most obvious piece of evidence would have to be the Santa Claus House. The name itself should suffice, but all the attractions therein will surely sway you to think that this is where Kris Kringle resides.
Beyond the aforementioned house, you can marvel at the numerous ice sculptures gracing the town. And holiday lighting takes on a completely different meaning when you observe the enthralling aurora lights. But you can do more than observe. Why not participate in a dog sledding contest? How about hiking or kayaking? You’ll be spoilt for choice, to say the least.
Nevada City, California
If you’re looking for the postcard Christmas experience, then you needn’t look further than Nevada City. The locals here are all about that holiday spirit, and they know how to make a once-in-a-lifetime celebration.
Victorian Christmas is Nevada City’s favorite theme, blasting you back to the days a la A Christmas Carol. And the season wonders are immediately apparent when you take a gander at the streets.
You’ll see lines of vendors that sell a wide assortment of beautiful dolls, perfume, jewelry, and much more. Nevada City lights up and blooms with color during these days. Carollers wander the streets to share holiday joy while carriages whisk lovers and friends alike about the town. It’s a picturesque scene that one would swear came right off the big screen.
The Christmas Spirit Is Everywhere
These are among the best places to go for Christmas in the USA, but they certainly aren’t the only ones worth seeing. There are pockets of wonderful magic all across the States, each just as special as the last. You may know of or stumble upon places completely unique in their own right. If you do, cherish them for as long as you can.
Nevertheless, the above locations will inspire even the grinchiest of souls to believe once more in the beauty of Christmas.