December 9, 2011
It’s beginning to look a lot like the holiday season in Philadelphia.
The city is aglow with festive light displays and decorations like the incredible lights on Franklin Square and shimmering Rittenhouse Christmas Tree.
From annual traditions (Macy’s Holiday Light Show, A Longwood Gardens Christmas) to high-definition delights (Comcast Holiday Spectacular), the Philadelphia region is brimming with the sights and sounds of the holidays.
Bundle up and explore a few of our favorite holiday lights attractions, below:
• Christmas Light Show at Macy’s Center City: An annual Philadelphia tradition, the Christmas Light Show at Macy’s Center City continues to entertain new generations of shoppers and visitors. Using over 100,000 LED lights and the sounds of the legendary Wanamaker organ, the Grand Court atrium becomes adorned with floating snowflakes, flying reindeer and many other familiar holiday images.
• Comcast Holiday Spectacular: This holiday season, experience high-definition visions of sugarplums during the Comcast Holiday Spectacular. Shown on the state-of-the-art Comcast Experience Video Wall at the Comcast Center, the Holiday Spectacular features scenes from George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker performed by the Pennsylvania Ballet. Shows are 15 minutes long and run every hour on the hour from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. (no shows at 5 p.m. during the week)
• The Holidays at Franklin Square: All December-long Franklin Square will be lit with thousands of festive holiday lights and decorations. Get into the holiday spirit by making your own ornament or visiting with Santa every Saturday and Sunday from 2-5 p.m. through December 24.
• Rittenhouse Square Christmas Tree: Rittenhouse Square transforms into a holiday wonderland with the flip of a switch, as the park and Philadelphia’s largest Christmas tree (more than 30 feet tall!) become illuminated with 5,000 brilliant, multi-colored globes and lights. Before enjoying the beautiful glow of the park, sneak in some holiday shopping at the shops and boutiques of Rittenhouse Row and enjoy a warm, delicious meal or a much-deserved drink at one of the many restaurants and bars in the area.
• Christmas Village at Love Park: For its fourth year, the Christmas Village is moving to Love Park complete with more than 50 decorated booths packed with European food, sweets and drinks, international seasonal gifts, traditional German Christmas ornaments and high-quality arts and crafts. As you shop and explore, enjoy live musical performances, hot mulled wine, bratwursts, a Christmas carousel and Philadelphia’s brightly lit Holiday Tree. Open through December 24.
• A Longwood Gardens Christmas: No holiday is complete without a visit to Longwood Gardens, where more than 400,000 twinkling lights and spectacular fountain shows compose a brilliant wonderland your family is sure to love. Gaze upon the large, starry snowflakes and icicles that sparkle throughout the Gardens before warming up in heated conservatory with twenty “rooms” featuring festive displays of floral garlands, sparkling trees and more.
• Christmas in Peddler’s Village: Light up your holiday season with a fantastic display of nearly one million holiday lights at “Peddler’s Village in Bucks County. While your in a festive mood, explore more than 70 specialty shops — perfect for your holiday shopping — and eight restaurants. While you’re there, check out the spectacular Gingerbread House Competition and Display.
• Holiday Garden Railway at Morris Arboretum: A miniature winter wonderland amid the evergreens awaits visitors to Morris Arboretum. The Holiday Garden Railway display is a quarter-mile of model-train track featuring seven loops and tunnels with 15 different rail lines, two cable cars, nine bridges and bustling trains that cruise past scaled replicas of historic monuments and Philadelphia-area landmarks made from all-natural materials. Open through December 31.
Check out more festive lights displays and take a video tour of Philadelpha’s holiday lights, below.
• Holiday Light Show at Shady Brook Farm: Millions of lights sparkle at Shady Brook Farm during their incredible Holiday Light Show. Experience the magical drive in your own car or hop on a moonlit hayride. Don’t forget to stop and get your picture taken with Santa at Santa’s Village. Reservations are recommended. Call 215-968-1670 or visit www.shadybrookfarm.com for more.
• Christmasland at Linvilla Orchards: For the holidays, Linvilla Orchards transforms into the North Pole. Get into the holiday spirit with the Christmasland display and do a little shopping at the market stocked with holiday treats. Santa makes a guest appearance every Saturday and Sunday in December, and on select afternoons, visitors can sing along during Caroling Hayrides, complete with live music, marshmallow roasting and apple cider. Through December 24.
• Herr’s Holiday Light Display: One of the region’s most celebrated snack foods, the Herr’s Factory is full decked out for the holidays. Now in its 22nd year, the annual Herr’s Holiday Lights Display features more than 400,000 lights arranged throughout the complex. Don’t miss “Big Red,” a 60-foot-tall Norway Spruce decorated with more than 1,500 red lights.
Get a taste of Philadelphia’s spectacular Holiday Lights in the video below: