With holidays coming up, that means there’s bound to be a whole lot of holiday festivities in Charlotte. One of our favorite ways to spend the holiday season is to go on a light tour and look at all the amazing light shows around the city. Some of these dazzling light installations have been on a two year hiatus, while some were forced to be drive-thru experiences only, but this year, things are back to their original formats and we’re so incredibly excited to share them with you. Here are 7 magical, must-see light shows around Charlotte.
1. Christmas at Biltmore
Christmas at Biltmore is a stunning estate that’s filled to the brim with elegant, classic Christmas decor this time of the year. There are two different time frames to enjoy “America’s largest home,” the estate, and Antler Hill Village. You can enjoy a spectacular daytime Christmas visit and explore halls bejeweled with twinkling lights, garland, Christmas trees, and ribbons. Choose the evening viewings, and enjoy twinkling lights, flickering candles, and roaring fireplaces. What’s more, you can even stay overnight. Tickets for the daytime or the evening viewings can be found on the website.
When: Nov 4 – Jan 8
Where: 1 Approach Rd, Asheville, NC 28803
2. Denton Farm Park
The 14th annual Country Christmas Train will be headed to Denton Farmpark again this Christmas. Perfect for families, this activity involves riding the Handy Dandy Railroad, all lit up to make it even more festive. Sit back and get a glimpse of twinkling Christmas lights, see the nativity scene, and then hop off just in front of Laramie’s Cakery, for fresh baked goodies and gingerbread cookies that they’ll be whipping up right in front of you.
When: Select dates from Nov 25 to Dec 27
Where: 1072 Cranford Rd, Denton, NC 27239
3. Airlie Gardens
The enchanted Airlie Gardens is the perfect spot to take a spectacular self-guided tour through lights and Holiday sounds. Advanced tickets are required for this light tour, and there are a couple of different tiers available. Tickets will likely sell out in advance, so don’t wait.
When: Nov 25 & 26 ; Dec 2 – 22nd
Where: 300 Airlie Rd, Wilmington, NC 28403
4. Chetola Resort
The Festival of Lights will be taking place again this year at Chetola Resort for a dazzling light display. Enjoy glittering lights, ice skaters near the lake, “Rudolph”, strolling carolers, and many more captivating, holiday scenes. What’s even better is that the millions of dazzling holiday lights will even be up through the Blowing Rock Wintefest until January 29th.
When: Nov 25 – Jan 29
Where: 185 Chetola Lake Dr, Blowing Rock, NC 28605
5. Hillridge Farms
Take a stroll in the countryside at Hillridge Farms Festival of Lights with the return of their Drive-Thru Light Show. You can check out millions of sparkling holiday lights from your car for a safe and mile-long trek. The benefits of a drive-thru show is that you can bring all your favorite hot drinks, like hot cocoa, snacks like kettle corn or chips, and even bring along your furry friends to enjoy with you. There will be a few restroom stops along the way as well! Get your tickets for $20 per car and enjoy what’s said to be an even bigger and better light show this 2022 season.
When: Nov 24 – Jan 1
Where: 703 Tarboro Road Youngsville, NC 27596
6. Riverbanks Zoo
The Riverbanks Zoo and Garden will be bringing back their Lights Before Christmas events for select dates in the upcoming holiday season. Alongside their dazzling displays of lights that will cover the grounds, you can also enjoy activities like Smores by the fire, you can visit Santa’s village and get a photo opp with Mr. Clause himself, ride rides like the Candy Cane Carousel and Polar Express, and more!
Where: 500 Wildlife Pkwy, Columbia, SC 29210
7. Charlotte Motor Speedways
Be dazzled by 4 million LED lights at Speedway Christmas at Charlotte Motor Speedways. This four mile course will have dazzling lights strewn across it and you can take it all in from the comfort of your car. Tune in to 101.3 FM for a synchronized station playing music to the lights. You can also enjoy a Christmas village for you and your kids enjoyment. There are slots between 6 – 10pm on select nights and you can grab your tickets online.
Where: 5555 Concord Parkway, Concord, NC 28027