Holiday Light Displays In And Around Austin

One of my favorite holiday traditions is piling the kids in the car and heading out to look at Christmas lights.  We’ve had some fruitless nights with aimless wandering, and we’ve had some amazing successes.  However, it is SO much easier to map out your route in advance and hit a handful of amazing displays, or to go to a drive through Christmas park or festival.  We’ve rounded up the best light displays in and around Austin for 2018, so get some hot cocoa to go and hop in the car! You’ve got some lights to see!

*Be sure to check websites first to make sure hours haven’t changed.

Trails, neighborhood events, festivals, and businesses in Austin

Austin Trail of Lights 

Austin Trail of Lights

2100 Barton Trail Road, Austin TX

The Trail of Lights in Zilker Park runs each year  beginning December 10th and going through the 23rd. Guests are invited to walk the trail beginning at 7 pm and lasting until 10pm.  General Admission is FREE for 7 out of the 14 nights at the Austin Trail of Lights. Refer to the calendar to see which nights offer free entry and which nights carry a $3 entry fee for attendees 12 and over. For extra convenience, you can purchase a Platinum or ZIP pass.  There are limited parking passes available for $15, or you can take a shuttle.

Circuit of the Americas- Winter Wonderland 

Winter Wonderland at the Circuit of the Americas

9201 Circuit of the Americas Blvd, Austin, TX 78617

This is the second year for the Winter Wonderland, which includes a skating rink, a human snow globe, a petting zoo, carnival (and camel!) rides, food, movies, Santa’s Workshop, and much more. Winter Wonderland will be open nightly from December 13th to 30th, from 6-11 pm on Fridays and Saturdays, and from 6-10 pm on Sundays through Thursdays. Tickets are $16 for admission, ages 6 and up.  There is complimentary parking with shuttle service, or upgraded parking is available for $10.

Clarksville Historic District/Willis Littlefield’s House 

Willis Littlefield’s house

W 12th Austin, TX 78703

The Clarksville Historic District, just west of downtown, is  full of holiday wonder this time of year. It sports a mix of Christmas decorations and old-timey shops and homes. The home of longtime resident decorator Willis Littlefield is a must-see.

The Domain Holiday Display

Domain Christmas Tree

11410 Century Oaks Terrace, Austin, TX 78758

Each year the Domain, an upscale mixed-use outdoor shopping center, showcases a Christmas lighting tree show and provides a live musical accompaniment and Santa Claus. The 40-foot tree boasts over 200,000 lights, 400 ornaments, and a 5-foot tall star on the top of the tree. You can take a ride in a horse-drawn carriage,  dance in synchronization to holiday music, enjoy the strolling carolers, and catch daily light shows that take place at 6,7, and 8 pm between Dick’s Sporting Goods and Dillards.

Donn’s Depot Holiday Display

Donn’s Depot Holiday Lights

1600 W 5th St, Austin, TX 78703

Donn’s Depot is a piano bar on West 5th street which offers interior Christmas lights throughout the entire year! Donn’s has a legendary seasonal (limited time) drink menu, you can listen to world-class musicians singing your holiday favorites live every night, and get all warm and fuzzy for the holidays! So get ready for hundreds of snowflakes, thousands of lights, and seasonal cocktails galore.

The Driskill Hotel 

Driskill Hotel Christmas Tree

604 Brazos St, Austin, TX 78701

The historic, ornate downtown hotel displays a beautiful tree and offers Christmas events and holiday music throughout the evenings. Join them for holiday teas, a bake sale, a pop up champagne bar, or listen to a string trio from The Arundel Ensemble perform every Thursday from November 29-December 20, from 5-7 pm.

Lala’s Little Nugget Christmas Bar 

Lala’s Little Nugget Bar

2207 Justin Ln, Austin, TX 78757

It’s Christmas all year round at Lala’s Little Nugget.  Lala’s displays holiday decorations all year, and hosts several parties.  You can even hold a work party or event there! This year Lala’s will also have a vintage Christmas tree painting day. Every Saturday and Sunday, they open at 11 am for bloody mary’s and mimosas. This year’s Christmas Bash will be December 20, from 6pm-2 am, and will feature an Ugly Sweater contest and white elephant gift exchange.

Mozart’s Coffee  

Mozart’s Coffee Shop

3825 Lake Austin Blvd. Austin, TX

At the top of the hour each night, Mozart’s displays over one million Christmas Lights set to music on their deck.  The shows start at 6 pm and goes until midnight. The event is free, and there is ample parking. Mozart’s is a hugely popular tradition with Austinites, so you may want to go on a weeknight instead of the weekend.

Texas Capitol Tree 

Texas State Capitol Tree

1100 Congress Avenue, Austin, TX

The lawn of the Capitol offers a Music & Light show every half hour featuring local musicians from now until January 6th, and a huge tree that can’t be missed. 

West 37th Street Lights 

37th Street Christmas Lights

W 37th St, Austin, TX

Residents of West 37th Street between Guadalupe Street and Home Lane began creating unique and weird light displays in the mid-1980s. Over time, festive residents left the area and the tradition faltered.  This year, the neighborhood has banded together to bring back the displays, bigger and better than ever. It’s best to walk as cars get very clogged, and a lot of the cooler elements (stuffed animal petting zoo?!) are best appreciated up close.  

Zilker Park Christmas Tree 

Zilker Park Tree

2100 Barton Springs Rd, Austin, TX 78704

While it’s located close to the Austin Trail of Lights, the Zilker Park Holiday Tree—the only one in the entire United States made from decorating a moon tower—is not officially part of that event. The 2018 Zilker Tree lighting took place November 25, and the tree will be on display every night from 6 p.m. to midnight until the end of the year.

Trails, neighborhood events, festivals, and businesses around Austin

Bastrop River of Lights 

Bastrop River of Lights

Fisherman’s Park, 1200 Willow St.  Bastrop, Texas

The River of Lights is a free half-mile walking trail in Fisherman’s Park and is illuminated each night from 6PM -9PM from Nov 23 – Dec 31.

Buda Trail of Lights 

Buda Trail of Lights

880 Main Street, Buda, Texas

This free walking trail of lights is located in the historic Stagecoach Park in Buda.  It is open on December 14-16,and 21-23 from 6 pm -10 pm nightly. Hot cocoa will be available and Santa will be there. Free parking & shuttle at Cabela’s.  

Heritage Park Neighborhood Christmas Lights 

Heritage Park Neighborhood

875 Quest Pkwy, Cedar Park, TX 78613

Come check out the Heritage Park Neighborhood to see the largest Live Oak Tree in Cedar Park lit with over 65,000 lights! The tree stays lit through the holidays, and the whole neighborhood is festive and bright.

Lakeway Trail of Lights  

Lakeway Trail of Lights

1102 Lohmans Crossing, Lakeway, Texas

From Dec 6 – Jan 1, the City of Lakeway invites you to view their annual free Trail of Lights from 6:30 pm – midnight.  

Lights of Tejas 

Lights of Tejas

1038 Private Road 2191, Giddings, TX 78942

This amazing Christian based Christmas display features several walking light trails, an indoor light show with a multi-media telling of the Christmas Story, a hayride, bounce houses, birthday party for Jesus, refreshments and more.  Your $9 general admission will include access to many free activities, with the option to upgrade or pay individually for other activities. You can also upgrade to the $30 Activity Package to get 10 Lights Credits, a hot meal in the dining hall, and a s’mores kit with admission. Hours are 5:30-10 pm, Dec. 14-15,  Dec. 20-23, and Dec. 26- 29.

Lights Spectacular, Johnson City   

Johnson City Lights Spectacular

100 East Main Street Johnson City, Texas

Johnson City’s Lights Spectacular is worth the drive to see one of the largest lights displays in Texas. The Blanco County Courthouse is a huge attraction to see. The display features more than a million lights across three city blocks, and is free. Horse drawn carriage rides and tractor pulled hayrides are available, as well as various food and gift options.

Round Rock Christmas Towne 

Round Rock Christmas Towne

4111 E Old Settlers Blvd, Round Rock, TX 78665

Christmas Towne is an event during December at the Old Settlers Association and Dell Diamond parking lot. Admission is free, and Christmas Towne features amazing light displays including a walking tunnel of lights, full-scale carnival rides, holiday refreshments for purchase and more. Tickets available for purchase to ride carnival rides. Check website for hours.

Santa’s Ranch 

Santa’s Ranch

9561 I-35 North, New Braunfels, TX 78130

Santa’s Ranch is a drive-thru Christmas Light Park  located just 30 minutes south of Austin on I-35. With over 1 million lights a 50’ tall Christmas tree, and 100 displays & animations, the one mile drive thru park can’t be missed!  Daily 6 pm – 10 pm (11 pm on Fri & Sat) til Jan 2 ($24 per car).

Walkway of Lights 

Walkway of Lights

305 Buena Vista Dr, Marble Falls, TX 78654

Walkway of Lights is a free walk thru trail in Lakeside Park.  It boasts over two million lights, 400 beautiful sculptures, weekend photos with Santa, concessions (cash only!) and more. While admission is always free, donations are much appreciated! Don’t forget, concessions and Santa photos are fundraisers for local non-profit organizations.

Private family homes

Anna Court Drive 

Anna Court

1329 Anna Court Dr, Cedar Park, TX

This neighborhood gets together for a fantastic light display that also serves as a Blue Santa drop-off location.  The best way to experience the cul de sac is to walk through it. Santa will be visiting on the weekends. Daily 5-10 pm.

Chinati Court 

Chinati Court

Chinati Court, Cedar Park, Texas

This cul-de-sac lights up each night and is a collection for cash & toy donations for Brown Santa.  Santa visits are on Friday and Saturday evenings, weekends offer Santa visits, a fire, and hot cocoa.  They accept new, unwrapped toys for children of Williamson County.

Dickens the ReinDog Wonderland 

Dickens the ReinDog Wonderland

30 Meandering Way, Round Rock, Texas

A beautiful home light display running nightly.

Frozen Medley Show by Dennington Decor 

Frozen Medley Show

16412 Rockgate Dr., Austin, TX

A Frozen themed light show that runs from 5:30-9:45 weekly, with the show extended to 10:30 pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

Harlien Family Christmas 

Harlien Family Christmas

400 Liscio Cove Georgetown , Texas 78628

40,000 synchronized lights go on each evening, with Santa visits on December 15th and 21st. The Harlien family is accepting donations for the Make a Wish Foundation.  Lights are on 6 -10 pm weekdays and 6 – 11 pm weekends.

Maywald Family Christmas Display 

Maywald Family Christmas

10505 Twilight Vista, Austin, TX 78736

The Maywald Christmas Display has about 120,000 lights, large wooden structures, and many vintage decorations. The display is on 2.5 acres of land and the Maywald Family invites you to come and park in their parking lot and walk through their holiday lights display for free.  They are accepting donations for Make-A-Wish to grant children’s wishes. The display runs every night from 6-10 pm.

Rhodes Family Christmas 

Rhodes Family Christmas

2410 Sharon Drive Cedar Park, TX

This home was featured on ABC’s ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’. They are collecting canned goods for the Cedar Park Area Food Bank. 

Shady Oak Christmas Display 

Shady Oak Christmas Display

107 Shady Oak Drive Georgetown, TX

This home has a light show with 25,000 lights synced to 95.3 FM. Light show from 5:45-11 pm on Friday and Saturday, and 5:45-10 pm Sunday through Thursday.

Spindler Family Christmas Light Show

Spindler Family Christmas Show

2441 Candle Ridge Trail, Georgetown, TX 78626

The Spindler Family light show runs from 6pm to 10pm Monday through Thursday, and 6pm to 11pm Friday through Sunday. As you drive by tune your car radio to 88.5 FM to listen and enjoy the show. They are accepting unwrapped toys for Brown Santa.

Toungate Klub Kringle 

Toungate Klub Kringle

2305 Arroyo Grande, Leander

The Toungate Family has over 50,000 lights that twinkle to over 14 different songs – including one for the Troops!  They also feature an 18-foot tree that lights up to the music. Visitors can tune their radios to 88.3 to listen to accompanying music. Free. 6-10 p.m. (weekdays), 6-11 p.m. (weekends).


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