Christmas is almost here and with it a ton of holiday celebrations in Central Texas that you just have to check out! If you know of any that I missed, please comment below and let me know!
Austin Trail of Lights
Austin’s largest holiday tradition and 2nd largest event in the city, the Austin Trail of Lights is located at Zilker Park in Austin. With over 65+ displays, 2 million lights, food trucks, nightly entertainment, and holiday activities it is easy to see why this is an annual tradition for many.
Dates: Dec 10 – 23, 2018
Times: 7 pm – 10 pm
Location: Zilker Park in Austin
Cost: Dec 10-13 & 17-19 FREE ; Dec 14-16 & 20-23 $3 per person for ages 12+
Parking: Advance Parking at Zilker Park is available online. No parking will be sold onsite.
- Trail of Lights site: https://austintrailoflights.org/
- Calendar: https://austintrailoflights.org/calendar
LBJ Tree Lighting
Visit the Lyndon B. Johnson State Park near Johnson City for the LBJ Tree Lighting, a tradition that was started by President and Mrs. Johnson 49 years ago.
Festivities begin before sunset at 5 p.m. when holiday music will begin and continue into the night. Visitors can enjoy seeing the park and nature trails decorated in festive holiday fare. The tree lighting ceremony happens at 6 p.m.
Date: Dec. 16, 2018, 5 p.m.-9 p.m
Location: Lyndon B. Johnson State Park, 199 Park Road 52, Stonewall, Texas
More Info: LBJ State Park Website
A favorite among those stationed at Fort Hood, BLORA lights (aka Nature in Lights) is a 5 1/2-mile drive-through light display located on Lake Belton at Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area (BLORA for short).
There is a cost (per vehicle to get in) and the wait to get in is typically long. We have waited 2.5 hours once before getting out of line, so if you plan to go, plan to go early in the season or after Christmas. Otherwise, get there early!
Date: Nov 16 2018 – Jan 6 2019
Time: Open nightly 5:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Location: Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area (BLORA) – N Nolan Road and Cottage Road Fort Hood, Texas 76544 United States Google Map
Cost (2018): Car, Mini-Van & Pick-Up – $15; 15 – Passenger Van, Limos & RVs – $30; 24 – Passenger Van – $50; 47 – Passenger Van or Larger Bus – $75
More Info: Fort Hood MWR
Mother Neff Christmas
A fairly recent tradition (in 2018, it will be their 4th year) a Mother Neff Christmas hosts Christmas crafts, a festive scavenger hunt, guided hikes, and shopping.
In 2018 the Leon River Dutch Oven Gang will host cooking demonstrations and serve holiday treats.
Date & Time: December 8, 2018; 10am-3pm
Location: Mother Neff State Park, 1680 TX-236 Highway, Moody, TX 76557
Cost (2018): Program is free with paid park admission. Adults (13 and older): $2
More Info: Mother Neff State Park Website
Carlson Light Display & Show
Obviously, we are going to throw ourselves into the mix. Over 30,000 lights programmed to 40 minutes of music, we have become an annual holiday tradition for many! To find out all the information about this year’s show, visit Carlson Light Display here on my blog.
Date: December 1 -25
Time: 7pm-10pm (6pm-midnight December 24 & 25)
Location: Harker Heights
More Info: Click Here
Monument Hill and Kreische Brewery State Historic Site Trail of Lights
Enjoy a beautiful 1/4 mile lighted walk along a trail that overlooks the city of La Grange and is adorned with thousands of lights which will lead you to the traditionally decorated 1850’s era home of German immigrant Heinrich Kreische bedecked in German-Texas Christmas splendor. Enjoy entertainment and the hospitality of the Friends of Monument Hill & Kreische Brewery who sponsor the event.
Dates: December 1, 7, 8, 14, 15
Time: 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Location: 414 State Loop 92, La Grange, TX 78945-5733
Cost: Admission Fee Required (does not state cost)
More Info: Park Website
Marble Fall’s Walkway of Lights
Celebrate the holidays at Marble Falls with over two million lights, photos with Santa, and more!
Location: Lakeside Park in Marble Falls. 305 Buena Vista Dr, Marble Falls, TX 78654
Dates: Nov 16 – Dec 26
Times: 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.
More Info: City of Marble Falls Website
San Saba Christmas Extravaganza
The San Saba Christmas Extravaganza is an all-day event starting at 9 a.m and lasting until after sunset with the Lighted Christmas Parade.
- 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Pecan Capital Trade Day on the San Saba County Courthouse Square
- 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. “Sip N Stroll” throughout the downtown district (ticket required)
- 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. Santa’s Workshop at the Estep-Burleson Plaza
- 5:30 p.m. River City Band Holiday Concert begins in front of the Arrowhead Bank
- 6:30 p.m. Lighted Christmas Parade
After the parade, take a drive through Mill Pond Park to experience the “Dancing Lights of Mill Pond Park!” which is open nightly.
Location: Downtown San Saba
Date: Dec 8
Times: 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
More Info: City of San Saba Website
Emily Ann Trail of Lights in Wimberly
Walk a path through six acres of decorated Wonderland all done by volunteers and local businesses. Hang around the burning Ye Olde Yule Log (as weather permits) nightly with friends and family to warm up, or visit Santa in his house!
Location: EmilyAnn Theater & Gardens 1101 FM 2325Wimberley, Texas 78676
Date: Nov 24 – Dec 28
Times: 6:00-9:00 p.m. (Sunday-Thursday); 6:00-10:00 p.m. (Friday & Saturday)
Cost: Free, Donations Accepted
More Info: EmilyAnn Theater & Gardens Website
Johnson City Lights Spectacular
Johnson City transforms itself into what always reminds me of a Christmas Hallmark Channel Movie town. You know the movies that I am talking about! They come on a Christmas time and features these quiet and cute towns all decked out in Christmas lights and decorations!
The season-long celebration ends New Year’s day which gives you plenty of time to explore Johnson City’s downtown merchants, art galleries and restaurants by foot or by carriage ride.
- Nov 23 – Lighting of the Courthouse – Nov 23 at 6:30 p.m. kicks off the lighting of the courthouse and firework display. More than a million lights will fill three city blocks including the Courthouse, City Park and Pedernales Electric Co-op headquarters.
- Nov 24 – Lighted Hooves & Wheels Parade – Nov 24 at 6:30 p.m.
- Dec 8-9 & Dec 15-16 – Living Story of Christmas at the First Methodist Church – The second and third weekends (Friday & Saturday) in December, the First United Methodist Church hosts a living nativity. The shows run every half hour from 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm.
- Nov 24, Dec 1, 8, & 15 – Lamplight Tours of the Historic LBJ Boyhood Home – 6-9pm – National park rangers provide tours of this historic house and explain life in Johnson City before rural electrification.
Dates: Nov 23 – Jan 1
Location: Johnson City
More Info: Johnson City Chamber of Commerce
Starry Starry Nights Lighted Christmas Park
Located within Badu Park in Llano, Texas this park turns into a winter wonderland complete with man-made snow on December 8th!
Enjoy a walk along the Llano river surrounded by thousands of twinkling lights and displays beginning November 23rd until December 31st! Or roast marshmallows by the fire, get your picture taken with Santa or visit the cookie decorating room.
- Snow Day – December 8th 1pm-9pm
- Visit Santa (get a picture taken) – 6-8pm every Fri & Sat until December 22
Location: Badu Park, 300 Legion Dr., Llano, TX 78643
Dates: Nov 23 – Dec 31
More Info: Llano Starry Nights Website