I think we all know what comes next in the holiday trifecta. Christmas! (For me at least) One of my favorite memories as a kid was driving around looking at the holiday light displays. Typically we would hit a few neighborhoods on our way back from my Grandma’s on Christmas Eve. But as an adult, I’ve noticed there aren’t quite as many fancied-up holiday neighborhoods. And to be fair, it might be a little weird to look out your front window and see some strange car creeping past your house, staring. But never fear! The holiday lights in St. Louis game brings more than enough magic to have you feeling festive. I put together the ultimate guide to the best holiday light displays in St. Louis and beyond, so read on to check it out!
When: Select night November 24th-December 30th
Cost: $12-$15 members, $15-$18 non-members (December 11th is a sensory-friendly night priced at $11), children under 2 are free
I’ve mentioned before how much I love our city’s zoo! Their holiday light display and activities are no exception. Select venues are open after hours, and they offer a variety of free kid activities. Parking is also free when you come for the WildLights. With firepits, s’mores kits, and I have it on good authority, some pretty tasty adult hot chocolates, this is one family-friendly holiday adventure to definitely check off your bucket list!
When: Members-only night November 17th, opens to public November 18th-January 6th
Cost: Members $19 Adults/$8 Children, Non-members $24 Adults/ $10 Children (Festival Level Members get 6 free tickets) Merry & Bright Bargain Nights drop adult prices by $2, Family Nights drop Adult prices by $2 and Children’s tickets are $5
Come see the gardens in all their winter-glowing glory! With firepits, s’mores stations, and plenty of adult-friendly beverage stops, the Garden Glow makes for the perfect holiday date night. Parking is typically free, but be prepared to walk a bit to get to the Garden entrance.
Anheuser Busch Brewery Lights
When: November 18th-December 30th
While this does take place at the brewery, it’s still a family-friendly event! There are drive-through options, as well as walk-through options, with visits from the world-famous Clydesdales and other fun activities. You can also do a rent-a-fire-pit package with friends for $450, which includes a ton of fun amenities.
Holiday Night Lights in Wentzville Rotary Park
When: November 24th-December 30 (with some closures)
Cost: $10 per vehicle up to 6 passengers, $1 per extra person after 6
Pile in the car after Black Friday shopping and hit this festive-filled, lighted drive-through. Or take advantage of that Turkey Trot 5k training and sign up for the Holiday Night Lights 5k and run through this winter wonderland course!
Celebration of Lights in Fort Zumwalt Park, O’Fallon
When: November 24th-December 30th
Cost: $15-$40, depending on vehicle size
This is easily one of my favorite light displays I’ve been to! As much fun as the Garden and Zoo are, there’s just something about the one in Fort Zumwalt Park that brings back ALL the memories. Also, it’s one of the few drive-through displays that will accommodate oversized vehicles (think church vans, limos, even tour buses!). Or, book in for a hayride and snuggle up under blankets with your loved ones. And maybe a spiked hot chocolate!
Santa’s Magical Kingdom
When: November 17th-January 7th
Cost: $35-$45, depending on vehicle size
This is one of the more expensive drive-through displays in the area, but it is the only one that is open every night, including the holiday nights! This means instead of waiting in those lines for Black Friday deals, you can pile the family into the car and get a jump on feeling the Christmas Spirit. Admission is cash only paid upon exiting, but they do have a cute little general store with an ATM just in case you forget.
Christmas Traditions Main Street St. Charles
When: November 24th-December 24th, Fridays 6 pm-8:30 pm, Saturdays Noon-8:30 pm, Sundays Noon-5 pm, Wednesdays 6 pm-8:30 pm
Probably the absolute mecca of Christmas/Holiday cheer is Christmas Traditions on Historic Main Street St. Charles. Featuring all the Christmas characters and Santas from around the globe, this particular event draws thousands of people each year. Not only is it a fun place to meet Santas and collect character cards, but you can also get your shopping done in one fell swoop with the unique, one-of-a-kind shops that line the brick-paved streets. And on Wednesdays, take a trip back in time. Main Street will be transformed into the foggy 1840s London in which Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol was set.
I think this list nicely rounds out all the holiday light extravaganza you need to properly get yourself in the festive mood! I, for one, am looking forward to seeing the holiday lights on Main Street on my way to yoga in the evening. And probably checking off a couple of others over the next few weeks. Like I’ve said before, I love the holiday season! Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!