November 30, 2017 Slideshows » Arts

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The Best Places to See Christmas Lights in the San Antonio Area This Holiday Season 

It's the most magical time of year here in Texas. We may not be able to enjoy the beauty of snow like most of the country does, but that doesn't mean we don't have holiday-infused sights to enjoy. With Texas-sized displays of Christmas lights and plenty of other attractions that go along, here's where you and yours can get in the holiday spirit in and around San Antonio.
Son's Island on Lake Placid
$25+ per vehicle, 110 Lee Street, Seguin, lakeplacidisland.com
Christmas at Lake Placid is not one to be missed. New this year, the Christmas celebration and trail of lights looks promising with holiday displays all along the lake. Make sure you visit this year and who knows, it might just be your new family tradition.

Photo via sons.island / Instagram
Travis Park
Free, 311 E Travis Street, travisparksa.com
Do you need 250,000 reasons to visit Travis Park? Probably not, but the 250,000 lights are reason enough to spend an hour or two in one of the city’s oldest parks (like 1870 old!), and in the heart of downtown! Catch these lights on display through Christmas. Oh, and make sure to take a cliche picture with your boo (or your baby) in front of the Christmas tree. It’s an unofficial must-do here in San Antonio.

Photo via mrs_tatianawolf / Instagram
Austin’s Circuit of Americas
$16+ (free for kids 5 & under), 9201 Circuit of the Americas Blvd., Austin, circuitoftheamericas.com
Winter Wonderland at The Circuit offers a bright tunnel of lights, movies on the lawn, human snow globe, Santa’s workshop, a vendor village and a petting zoo for all general admission ticket holders. If you’re willing to pay a little extra, you can also enjoy camel rides, a skating rink, carnival rides, a hot air balloon float and a train ride.

Photo via erinito
Santa’s Ranch in New Braunfels
$28 + tax per vehicle, 9561 IH 35 North, New Braunfels, (830) 743-1293, santasranch.net
If you and your family don’t take a mini road trip up to New Braunfels for Santa’s Ranch every yea,r well then you’re doing Christmas all wrong. Considered one of the biggest and best drive-thru Christmas light offerings in the area, the ranch presents an assortment of displays in all shapes, sizes, colors and interests. The kids will love it, your parents will love it, you’ll love it. Heck, even The Grinch himself would go soft paying Santa’s Ranch a visit.

Photo via mannella02 / Instagram
River Walk
Free, 849 E Commerce Street, (210) 227-4262, thesanantonioriverwalk.com
Whether you want to play tourist or are looking for one of the most romantic spots in the city, checking out the Christmas lights on the River Walk is a necessity during the holiday season. Feast your eyes on more than 122,000 lights (that’s 2,500 strings of light) hanging down from the trees for a truly magical sight. You have plenty of time to make your way over, with the lights stay on until January 7.

Photo via babyoliviabj / Instagram
Don Strange Ranch in Boerne
$27 per vehicle, 103 Waring Welfare Road, Boerne, sanantoniochristmaslightsfest.com
Take a quick trip outside of San Antonio for a dazzling drive-thru display. The Boerne attraction includes more than two million Christmas lights. TWO MILLION! They don’t call it the Christmas Light Fest for nothing, y’all. Kids will also enjoy the hayride for an extra dose of Texas fun ($15 per person). Talk about a magical experience, so make sure you swing by before New Year’s Eve.

Photo via henrylee1968 / Instagram
Austin’s Trail of Lights
Free or $3+, 2400 Barton Springs Road, austintrailoflights.org
For starters, it’s held in the same area as ACL, so you know it’s lit (excuse the pun). Location aside, this Austin staple is worth the road trip up I-35. And in addition to lights, Trail of Lights includes music, fun games and food trucks to be enjoyed. Be sure to plan accordingly since some nights have free admission, just be ready to brave the crowds. Running December 9-23, 7-10pm.

Photo via atxlights / Instagram
San Antonio Zoo
$19-$22, 3903 N St Mary's Street SITE
The nighttime holiday tradition is not one to be missed by those who love animals or have little ones. Stroll through the zoo to witness the wild display while sipping on holiday-favorite treats like smores & hot cocoa, or take a break to play some games… or perhaps, ride a camel? On display through New Year’s Eve.

Photo via crystal_olveraphoto / Instagram
Six Flags Fiesta Texas
$53+, 17000 IH-10 West, sixflags.com
Fiesta Texas’ Holiday in the Park brings you enchanting experiences for the entire family. There’s holiday themed sights, sounds, tastes and attractions. New this year is the Winter Wonderland, which not only features Christmas lights but also snow! Here! In South Texas! See it before the snow melts on January 7.

Photo via sixflagsfiestatexas / Instagram
SeaWorld
Prices vary, 10500 Sea World Drive, seaworld.com
There’s more lights on display at SeaWorld than there are people living in San Antonio. Woah! With more than 8 million lights, the theme park’s Christmas celebration also includes holiday shows and festive foods. Even the chance to meet and greet Santa Claus, too! On display through January 2.

Photo via seaworldtexas
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Elf Acres
$25 + tax per vehicle, 1475 Grosenbacher Road, elfacres.com
This 15-acre drive-thru Christmas light spot is not only convenient for those living on the West Side (we all know it’s poppin’ over there), but it’s also a spectacular spot. With more lights this year than ever before, the animated displays are also accompanied by music. Complete your wonderland experiences with tasty holiday snacks (you know that means hot chocolate and funnel cakes!) from the concession stand.

Photo via elfacresvenue / Instagram
Natural Bridge Caverns
$10, 26495 Natural Bridge Caverns Road, naturalbridgecaverns.com
Trekking through the caverns is an awesome expierience, but go for something more laid-back with a hayride through the caverns grounds. Enjoy the fresh air and thousands of lights on display with holidays snacks in hand - and your belly. Even better, this ride is handicap accessible and is offered three times daily during December

Photo via nidhinikhil
Light the Way at University of the Incarnate Word
Free, 4301 Broadway Street, SITE
This 30-year tradition is one popular among the Alamo Heights crowd, but should definitely be visited by all. Enjoy the beauty of the university, just think of the Christmas lights throughout campus as the cherry on top. Treat yourself and the family to a self-guided tour before it closes on January 6.

Photo via youngmini418 / Instagram
The Pearl
Prices vary, 303 Pearl Pkwy., atpearl.com
First of all … the Pearl is the place to be this holiday season. Chanukah at Pearl will be held on December 18, and yes that includes the lighting of the Menorah. On December 19, there will be a Posada along with buñuelos, tamales and Mexican hot chocolate. Oh, plus the Pearl will also be offering a holiday night market and Holiday Canciones (obvs a music series) on Thursdays through December 21. And the Pearl will be adorned with plenty of Christmas lights to keep the grounds looking as charming as ever.

Photo via samlerma / Instagram
Windcrest
Windcrest, windcrest-tx.gov
You should already know that pretty much all of Windcrest goes all out for the Christmas light display. While they’re battling it out for the top prize in winning the community’s contest, the rest of the SA area can just enjoy the sparkling lights.

Photo via cocoandhercats / Instagram
Morgan’s Wonderland
Up to $17, 5223 David Edwards Drive, morganswonderland.com
The most inclusive theme park in the city is hosting Wonderland Christmas on select days throughout the month. The winter attraction will include Christmas lights galore, of course, as well as a petting zoo, skating (on a simulated ice rink), pictures with Santa ($5) and all the regular goodness that Morgan’s Wonderland has to offer.

Photo via morganswonderlandtexas
Griswold-Hinojosa Family
Boerne’s Parade of Lights
Free, Boerne (map will be provided), ci.boerne.tx.us
Boerne residents might be battling it out for who has the most festive display or which is decorated best, but we can just enjoy how extra they’ll be. Guaranteed to go all out (it is Boerne after all), these houses make for the perfect little spot to enjoy lights without dealing with crowds or entrance fees. Judging will take place on December 13.

Photo via ci.boerne.tx.us
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Son's Island on Lake Placid
$25+ per vehicle, 110 Lee Street, Seguin, lakeplacidisland.com
Christmas at Lake Placid is not one to be missed. New this year, the Christmas celebration and trail of lights looks promising with holiday displays all along the lake. Make sure you visit this year and who knows, it might just be your new family tradition.

Photo via sons.island / Instagram
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