Christmas is one of the most magical times of year – Santa leaving presents under the tree, the spirit of giving, mistletoe and silver bells… but one aspect that really reels in the enchantment is the array of colorful Christmas lights. Adorning houses, businesses, and trees, sparkling lights and merry decorations put us all in the Christmas spirit. While many of us will hop in the car for a drive-through light show, one of the best displays in the state is enjoyed on foot – consider it the best winter hike in North Carolina; one that’ll positively enchant you.

This is such a magical event! Have you ever attended? For more information, including the dates for this year, or to purchase tickets, click here.

For another way to get in the Christmas spirit and really create the magic for the little ones, hop on board this train and journey to the North Pole.

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Best Winter Hike In North Carolina

What are the best walk through light displays in North Carolina?

North Carolina has a number of wonderful walk-through light displays. On the coast, head to Elizabethan Gardens in Manteo during the holidays for their annual WinterLights Festival that transforms the garden into an after-dark wonderland. Over in Charlotte, Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens is illuminated each Christmas season with lights and festivities throughout. In Dillsboro, the annual Lights and Luminaries is a wonderful event for strolling through the charming Christmas town and enjoying the sights and sounds of the season. And, of course, in the mountains, there is no Christmas lights display that even compares to the magic found at the Biltmore Estate during the holidays.

Can I go hiking in the winter in North Carolina?

You bet you can go hiking in the winter in North Carolina! There are many trails that are transformed into a winter wonderland in western North Carolina... trails where you may encounter waterfalls that are completely frozen over, or entire mountain balds covered in freshly fallen snow. In stark contrast, over on the coast, and in southeastern North Carolina, hike on just the right day and you may even want to wear shorts - even in the winter!

What are the best parks to visit in the winter in North Carolina?

A variety of parks to visit in the winter in North Carolina make ideal family outings, including the largest snow tubing park in the Southeast at Hawks Nest near Boone. There are also zipline adventure parks that are open year-round with special winter-themed, daring adventures, like ice climbing up a frozen waterfall. It's easy to have fun all year long in the Tar Heel State, but keep reading here if you're specifically looking for winter activities in North Carolina.


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