The cold weather that comes along with the winter season may have you wanting to stay snuggled up at home, but with everything Mississippi has going on this time of the year, that would be a waste. From attractions that are open year-round to seasonal events, a trip to any of these places this winter won’t soon be forgotten.
Each Christmas season the “City of Lights” lives up to its nickname as the Historic Courthouse Square is adorned with out-of-this-world decorations and over 200,000 dazzling lights. The Yuletide fun continues with a ton of events – all of which take place under the luminous blanket of Christmas lights.
2. Lewis Lights, Purvis
In the works for over two decades, the Lewis Light Display has garnered quite the reputation, attracting visitors from as far away as Canada, Europe, and even Asia. The larger-than-life display, which is open until the end of the year, is made up of over 200,000 sparkling lights and several pieces of original art
3. The Polar Express, Batesville
A wonderful tradition for the entire family, the Polar Express train ride follows the details of the beloved story, right down to the golden tickets and a dress code that calls for pajamas. Departing from Batesville, passengers embark on an hour-long train ride to the North Pole, complete with hot chocolate, cookies, caroling, and, of course, Santa Claus.
4. Longwood, Natchez
Referred to as an “architectural wonder,” Longwood is an amazing sight year-round but the plantation is especially stunning during the holidays when it is set aglow by thousands of Christmas lights. After absorbing the beautiful exterior, be sure to head inside for a full tour of the historically significant mansion.
5. Tishomingo State Park
Rated one of the top state parks in the nation, Tishomingo attracts visitors from all over the country, and the winter months are no exception. Aside from the swimming pool, the park’s facilities are open year-round, which means the cooler weather is a great time to enjoy all that Tishomingo has to offer.
6. The Richardson Light Show, Madison
The Richardson Light Show has been in the business of getting Madison in the Christmas spirit for over ten years now, a feat that has earned it third place on USA Today’s list of the best private light displays in the country. The incredible display includes over 200 inflatables, over 100,000 LED lights, hundreds of lighted wireframe characters and messages, a 23-foot animated tree, and much more.
7. Bay Springs
Located in Jasper County, the picturesque small town of Bay Springs looks even more perfect during the winter months thanks to city-wide Christmas displays. The lights all over the town shine even brighter once you learn that citizens are encouraged to put them up as a reminder of the true meaning of the season. More than just aesthetically pleasing, Bay Springs offers an abundance of hunting and fishing opportunities, especially during the winter season.
8. Mid-South Ice House, Olive Branch
Even though Mid-South Ice House is open year-round, the winter season is the perfect time to spend a day on the ice, especially for the young ones who are out of school. And just to keep things from getting boring, Mid-South Ice House has a ton of holiday events planned, including a visit from the Grinch himself.
9. Christmas in Cotton Plant
Featured on TLC’s “My Crazy Obsession,” Christmas in Cotton Plant is the holiday display that tops all displays. The 13-acre setup includes over 300,000 lights and hundreds of inflatables, many of which are extremely rare. Attracting thousands of people nightly, you definitely don’t want to miss Christmas in Cotton Plant.
10. Mississippi Children’s Museum, Jackson
Winter means many things, and at the Mississippi Children’s Museum it means it’s time for the annual Holiday Spectacular. The festivities last for the entire month of December and include everything from presentations to holiday-themed activities and crafts.
In the midst of its “Merry Meridian” campaign, it’s safe to say that Christmas is a big deal in this Mississippi city. The month-long celebration began with the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree and will continue until the end of the year via holiday-themed performances, Trees of Christmas tours, and more.
What are some places in Mississippi you like to visit during the winter season? Tell us in the comments section below!