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Holidays Around Philadelphia

Who doesn’t like the months of November and December? Sure the weather is getting colder but this time of year is one of the best times to just sit back and relax. Either by the fire or out walking around looking at all the beautiful Christmas lights. 

In and around Philadelphia you will find some truly spectacular holiday set ups. Check out a wonderful little Christmas Village set up in Love Park. Or hop in your car and take a drive thru more than 3 million lights. 

Philadelphia is where you want to be this Holiday season. Nothing kicks off the holiday season like watching the Nation’s oldest Thanksgiving Day Parade. So grab some hot chocolate and start planning this Holiday season in and around Philadelphia. 


If planning on attending the parade, do yourself a favor and take the bus or train. Roads are closed and detoured all over the area where the parade is happening. Parking can be near impossible to find even for residents who live along the parade route.  It is much easier and faster to just hop on the train and walk over to the parade route. 


Come down to kick off the holidays with massive balloons, spectacular floats, and amazing performances from famous artists to local high school bands. Be sure to stay till the end and watch Santa co up those famous Art Museum steps.


Families and couples from all around the Delaware Valley come out to see the Holiday Light Show at Shady Brook Farm. On a slow night it will take you around 20 minutes to drive the 2 mile trial. 

There are over 3 million lights set up at Shady Brook Farm. 

Don’t want to drive through but still want to see all the lights? Don’t worry Shady Brook Farms also offers wagon rides through the lights. If you can wait till after it snows (if it does snow), it is truly a winter wonderland. Even without fresh snowfall this is still a great night out.

Check out the market afterwards for your chance to snap a photo with Santa while having a beer or some hot chocolate.


It seems like there is always something fun and exciting going on at Franklin Square. Winter is no different. Go check out Independence Hall and the surrounding area during the day. Than when night falls head over to Franklin Square. It is a short walk from the Independence Mall area. 

Unlike some of the other events that happen here throughout the year. The holiday festival lights are free.  


There is no better time of year to visit Peddler’s Village than around the holidays. The whole village is brightly lit up with thousands of lights. Don’t forget to look up at all the beautiful snowflakes hanging in the trees. 

This is a great spot to find that locally made, small business gift for that special person on your gift list. There are shops that are selling clothing, candy, candles and just about anything else you can think of. Grab a warm coat and the hand of your lover and take a romantic stroll around Peddler’s Village. Don’t worry this is also a great place to take children. They will just love all the lights and gingerbread houses. 


Trains and Christmas go together like Peanut Butter and Jelly. You can’t have one without the other and Morris Arboretum does it right. Well, the trains part that is. Watch as the trains whip around the quarter mile of tracks as they pass many Philadelphia area landmarks.

Too bad we can shrink down and walk around this lovely model they have built here.



It seems like everytime we bring up things to do in and around Philadelphia that the Blue Cross Riverrink down along Penn’s landing always comes up. It’s not hard to see why either. In the winter this area transforms into great outdoor space perfect for hanging out with family or friends. Sit inside the nicely heated tents that have a unique feel to it, that you could only find in Philly. Or sit outside sipping hot chocolate next to one of the fire pits. 

Don’t forget to bring your ice skates. Blue Cross Riverrink has a wonderful outdoor ice skating rink to skate around. Don’t have skates? Don’t worry head inside to rent a pair. 


Christmas isn’t complete without a visit to Sesame Place if you have young children. Meet up with Big Bird and friends and ride some very kid friendly rides. Not only can you have a fun day riding rides and viewing the park all nicely lit up at night. You can also meet Santa himself. 

But wait there’s more. You can now meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Clarice, Bumble and Sam the Snowman. Dress up in your warm coats and boots and head down to 1-2-3 Sesame Street.

There is so much going on in and around Philly for the holidays. Other places to check out would be Dilworth Park right at City Hall. There is an ice skating rink that stays open till late February. You can also do a little holiday shopping at the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market or watch the Deck the Hall Light show.


Longwood Gardens is another spectacular place to visit around the holidays. Anytime of year is great to visit this wonderful garden. But during the holidays it is all light up with thousand of lights set up inside and out.

Anyplace around Philadelphia that is a must visit every year for you or your family? Let us know in the comments below. There are many places to see around center city just be sure to dress for the weather. Always dress for the weather when doing Christmas light hunting. You never know when you will find yourself outside staring at a beautiful display.

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