Published November 22, 2019
You might be hoping for a white winter, but those are few and far between in Texas. However, there is no shortage of holiday markets and festivals, celebrating Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Christmas and more in one big happy melting pot. Whether you’re looking for German-style decorations, lights, parades or lighting of a Christmas trees, we have a little something for each taste. So, if you’re thinking: Where’s the best holiday lights near me? We bring you the best options for enjoying a festive holiday season in Texas in 2019.
Are you planning on enjoying the holidays in New York or Washington, D.C.? Click here for inspiration.
Prepare yourself for a staggering display of Christmas lights, when you embark upon the adventure in the world’s largest Christmas lights maze. Between Dallas and Fort Worth, right by Globe Life Park the amazing Texas Christkindl Market delivers you an enchanting market with Santa’s Palace, an ice-skating rink and plenty of opportunity to find the very best gifts for your family. As a very family-friendly place, you can bring the entire family to enjoy the traditional German-style decorations, while cozying up in the Warming Haus, or have the kids meet Santa Claus himself! With plenty of stalls and live entertainment, there’s no reason not to put on your ugliest Christmas sweater and get on a FlixBus to one of the most popular Christmas Markets in the entire US.
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WHEN: 23 November-23 December
WHERE: Texas Live! Plaza, 1650 E. Randol Mill Road, Arlington, Tx
OPENING HOURS: Sun–Thurs 11am-9pm; Fr-Sat 11am-10pm
HOW TO GET THERE: Walk from the FlixBus FWCS Bay H, Fort Worth, take bus 089 and change at East Fort Worth Transfer Center #5 to bus 021. Get off at Randol Mill & Mill Valley Cir and walk east the final twenty minutes.
In Zilker Park the 55th Annual Trail of Lights will give you the beautiful, essential and genuine Austin Holiday experience. Although the annual Tree Lighting ceremony takes place in November, the Trail of Lights takes place from the 10th of December to the 23rd. Here you will find the authentic community feeling as kids and grown-ups alike join in on the Holiday cheer. Sign up for the 5k fun run and be part of the kickoff to a spectacular festival that spreads all over the city of Austin. Rock around the Zilker Tree and go have a joyful communal dinner at the best restaurants Austin has to offer, visit the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, where you can get your handmade gifts, supporting local artists. Perhaps you’re in for Ballet Austin’s 57th annual setup of the Christmas classic “The Nutcracker”? Anyway, in Austin you don’t need to look for the festivities, because whatever you’re celebrate, the Trail of Lights will bring the joy.
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WHEN: 10 December-23 December
WHERE: Zilker Park, Austin, Tx
OPENING HOURS: 7am-10pm
HOW TO GET THERE: Walk or take bus number 10 or 30 from FlixBus Downtown Austin stop.
A short 20-minute walk from our El Paso bus stop lies the home of the biggest holiday event of the city. The Winterfest is a proper family Christmas fair. Start your holiday celebrations at the Ice Skating Rink and make your way to the Tree Lighting ceremony that concludes the Celebration of Lights Parade on November 23rd. The Ice Skating Rink is beautifully lit and bathed in an enchanted light and beautiful decorations. Once your legs get tired, you can bring the entire family to a cozy – and free - showing of any and all your favorite Christmas movies at the Plaza. For a change of venue, the famous El Paso streetcar takes you downtown or to Story Time at the El Paso Library, to the Zoo, where Santa is rumored to visit and back to the Fiesta Fridays at the Arts Festival Plaza. All in all you won’t get bored in Austin this Christmas!
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WHEN: November 23-January 4
WHERE: 125 W Mills Avenue, El Paso, Tx
OPENING HOURS: Mon-Wed 4pm-9pm, Thur-Fri 4pm-11pm, Sat 12am-11pm, Sun 12am-9pm
HOW TO GET THERE: Head East on W Yandell Dr, turn right on Prospect St, right on N Santa Fe st, and you’ll see it on your left
In the holiday season the whole town of Grapevine is transformed in to one big Christmas festival. The magic of Christmas flows through the streets of the Christmas Capital of Texas®. Over the course of 40 days 1400 events will take place and you will be able to rejoice and be merry in a city that sparkles with over a million lights, enormous decorations, and a cheerful Elf Adventure. Take part in several handmade projects and make yourself a Christmas wreath, take the North Pole Express® or escape to Snowland. At the Gaylord Texan you can witness an extraordinary display of life-size ice sculptures or go diving with Scuba Diving Santa at the SEA LIFE Aquarium. Starting with the Carol of Lights, you can watch the mayor turning on the lights as singing snowmen, Mrs. Claus and her husband’s reindeer introduce this year’s most exciting time. So, if you aren’t celebrating the holiday season in Dallas/Fort Worth, take a FlixBus and go to Grapevine. There the Yule-tide spirit is truly alive.
Read more here.
WHEN: November 20-January 16
WHERE: Grapevine, Tx
HOW TO GET THERE: 5 minutes from the FlixBus’ Fort Worth stop, you can catch a TEXRail that will put you right in the heart of Grapevine.
Galveston Island is transformed during the holiday season and a large collection of must-see attractions with the Festival of Lights, Downtown Lanterns & Lights and the Santa Hustle – a holiday 5k or half marathon. If you don’t feel like being too active, you can go to the 46th annual ‘Dickens on the Strand’, where Galveston’s Strand street is converted into Victorian London with parades, beautiful oil lamps, entertainment, vendors in costumes and ye olde Christmas carolers. On December 9th you can celebrate Hanukkah on the Strand, with a menorah lighting, kosher delis and live entertainment. You can also travel with the Polar Express™, where you can drink hot chocolate as you visit the North Pole. Downtown you can find the German inspired decorations and lights, a giant snow globe and the town’s best holiday shopping in the small boutiques, art galleries and antique shops.
Read more here.
WHEN: November 15-January 12
WHERE: Galveston, Tx
HOW TO GET THERE: Get off our FlixBus stop in Houston and take bus 82 or 85 to the Amtrak Bus stop and catch an Amtrak Bus to Galveston.
If you’re looking to celebrate Hanukkah in Texas, you can stay up to date on what’s going on here. Spread across the state there will be a variety of events, including Menorah Lightings, events for the children and parties for those a bit older.
In the weekend of the 14th and 15th of December the 29th annual celebration of KwanzaaFest will take place in Fair Park in Dallas. With a huge focus on sustainabililty and health with the Beat Obesity 5K walk/run and Healthy Lifestyles Program, you can celebrate the festivities with a clean conscience. There will be market vendors, national recording artists performing and activities just for the kids. Due to contributions from sponsors and the wonderful volunteer staff, the entire KwanzaaFest is free for all to enter. Everything you buy in the vendors you can carry home in the sustainable KwanzaaFest custom signature eco-friendly shopping bag. Up to 60,000 people are going, so make sure to get your free ticket soon!
You can read more here.
WHEN: December 14-December 15
WHERE: Fair Park, Dallas
HOW TO GET THERE: Get off our FlixBus stop at 2424 Swiss Ave, Dallas and take the green to Fair Park Station and find the Automobile Building a short five-minute walk east.