You might not associate Florida with Christmas scenes, but many Floridians love to go all out for the holidays (and since it’s not freezing, we actually can). All across the state, our small towns and big cities light up with holiday spirit. Here are some of our favorites:
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
If you want to spend Christmas in Florida but you miss the snow, head to the Central Florida town of Celebration. Snow will fall on this adorable little town every night from November 28th through December 31st. There will also be ice skating, carolling, entertainment, photos with Santa, and more.
2. St. Augustine
From November 19th through the end of January, our nation's oldest city is covered in millions of lights to celebrate the season. Stroll through the historic streets or catch a trolley ride with "magic" glasses for a spectacular evening.
Pensacola goes all out for Christmas with its annual Winterfest, beginning with an Elf Parade on November 25th. Get ready for trolley tours, performances, snow, visits from Santa and much more.
4. St. Petersburg
North Straub Park is beautiful this time of year, so save the date of November 25th, when the Christmas tree and park lights will turn on. Come back to the park on December 3rd at 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for Snowfest, with lots of activities, cookie making, and 64 tons of snow.
5. West Palm Beach
Get ready for a month of holiday fun in West Palm Beach, beginning with the tree lighting on December 3rd. Then, bring the kids out for snowfall in CityPlace every night (except Christmas) through the end of December. Don't miss the famous 600-ton tree made of sand, Sandi.
6. Fort Lauderdale
These stunning displays are twice as beautiful when reflected on the water in Fort Lauderdale's famous Winterfest Boat Parade, scheduled for December 10th.
Come see Jacksonville's 30th annual Christmas on the River tree lighting at the Jacksonville Landing, November 25th at 7:00pm, followed by fireworks. November 25th through December, bring your family to the Enchanged Christmas Village for an unforgettable holiday experience with over one million lights, caroling, rides, entertainment, food, pictures with Santa, and much more.
Santa's Enchanted Forest, the largest Christmas-themed amusement park in the world, is open from November 3rd through January 8th. A 50-foot Christmas tree lighting will take place at Bayfront Park on November 25th at 7:00 p.m.
Third Street South is the place to be for holiday cheer in Naples. The celebration begins November 21st when the mayor lights the tree and snow magically begins to fall. The snow and events then continue throughout the week.
Our Capital City becomes a winter wonderland this time of year, covered in twinkling lights for the holiday season. Check out the Annual Camellia Christmas at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park on December 2nd for a magical candle-lit walk through the gardens, with holiday music and a visit from Santa. The 30th annual Winter Festival takes place downtown on December 3rd, with a parade, live entertainment, food, and arts and crafts.
Have you spent the holidays in any of these magical towns? Let us know about any fun festivities we might have left out!