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Weekend Events in Austin, Texas

Austin Trail of Lights | December 8 – 23

Tickets for the 59th annual Austin Trail of Lights are ON SALE NOW! Join us December 8 – 23, 2023 (closed Mondays) and experience the magic at the 59th annual event.

Hosted by the Trail of Lights Foundation, the annual event in Zilker Park celebrates the unique spirit and people that make Austin the place we love to call home.

The most beloved, and longest running holiday tradition of its kind in Texas’ capital city, Austin Trail of Lights powered by H-E-B, welcomes hundreds of thousands of guests from Central Texas and around the world each year for its jubilant displays of lights.

A Christmas Carol | Now– December 31 | The ZACH Theatre

Sold out four years in a row, Austin’s hottest holiday tradition returns with new music and surprises to ring in the season. ZACH’s adaptation of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is a musical sleigh ride through rhythm and time, infusing the traditional Victorian story with a score that spans all genres and eras.

Vintage Market Days of Greater Austin | December 1 – 3

Join us as we host interior designers, decorators, and over 100 dealers with unique vintage & antique goods, handmade treasures, clothing & jewelry, LIVE plants, and so much more!

Hungry?! Enjoy a great mix of food options including custom and vegan menus! Snag anything from a delicious wood-fired pizza to a delectable deep fried treat! Caramel apples, gourmet fudge and chocolates, delicious treats, and it doesn’t stop there!

Participate in one-of-a-kind shopping, giveaways, and so much more! Children 12 and under admitted free of charge!

The market is indoors, so weather is not a factor! Come shop in comfort the most unique, one-of-a-kind shopping experience!

FUNBOX | ALL WEEKEND | Barton Creek Square 

The world’s biggest bounce park is OFFICIALLY OPEN! With 25,000 sq. ft. of continuous jumping zones connecting 10 different play areas. This play area was designed with a kid-first, social media -second approach. Its fun for adults too, with tons of photos ops! Visit their instagram @REALFUNBOX to see what your visit will include.

Fortlandia at  Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center-  Reserve tickets in advance. An annual exhibition of secret hideouts, kicks off this fall in the Family Garden. Don’t forget to grab your free PassForts with mini maps!

Santa at The Domain | Now – December 24th | Century Oaks Terrace

Santa Photo Experience. The ultimate holiday tradition awaits! Santa will be under the tree in front of Macy’s on Century Oaks Terrace. Secure your spot today.

Santa’s Ranch NOW OPEN | New Braunfels

Kicking of the Holiday season! They are EVERY single night starting FRIDAY, including ALL holidays, even if it’s raining!

Mozart’s 2023 Christmas Light Show | NOW – January 6 | Mozart’s

Swifties, this year is for you. Mozart’s Light show will have Taylor Swift’s actual Era’s Tour dance floor! It will be front and center all season long, available for photo ops and shaking-it-off every night. Not to mention the nautical excursions, table service, hot chocolate, cocoa bombs, holiday t-shirts, & dog-friendly treats which are a longtime favorite!

Mozart’s 14th Annual Holiday Light Show returns nightly starting November 9th, lasting until January 6th. TICKETS ON SALE NOW!

Bee Cave on Ice | NOW – January 15 | Hill Country Galleria

Hill Country Galleria and the City of Bee Cave present Bee Cave on Ice! Come out and enjoy this year’s coolest holiday attraction from Friday, November 10th – Monday, January 15th. The $15 ticket includes a skate rental and a 60-minute skate session. Reservations are highly encouraged, but a number of walk-ups will be available. Skate times each day vary

Walkway of Lights | Now– December 31 | Marble Falls

The trail runs most days in December and is a walking trail through approximately 8 acres of lighted exhibits. Most nights feature live entertainment on the stage next to our yule log where guests can enjoy complimentary marshmallows and hot chocolate. Santa Claus flies in most nights from the North Pole and will be in his house to greet everyone!

Ice Rodeo | Now – January 7 | Four Seasons Hotel Austin

Skate beneath the stars – and overlooking Lady Bird Lake – at Austin’s premier ice-skating rink and winter experience. Taking place November 18, 2023, through January 7, 2024, Ice Rodeo at Four Seasons Hotel Austin features an outdoor ice rink, outdoor dining cabins, pop-up lounges, immersive holiday décor, extravagant art installations and more.

Blue Genie Art Bazaar | Now – December 24

The Blue Genie Art Bazaar is an annual holiday art show held in Nov/Dec. FREE admission! Shop for gifts from 200+ talented artists. The Blue Genie Art Bazaar is a fixture of the Austin holiday shopping season. Open from late November to Christmas Eve. The Bazaar features unique work from over 200 local & regional artists. Parking & admission are always FREE of charge.

Luminations | Now– January 6

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at The University of Texas at Austin presents a glowing celebration of winter’s natural beauty with all-new light installations. Inspired by the four elements — earth, air, fire and water — this year’s exhibition spans nearly two miles of our Texas Arboretum, inviting you to immerse yourself in the season. Tickets on sale now!

Peppermint Parkway | Now -December 30th | COTA

Ready, Set, Glow! Peppermint Parkway returns to Circuit of the Americas November 25th through December 30th!  Experience a drive-thru holiday spectacular with a mile of holiday displays, millions of lights, dancing characters and a holiday plaza full of food, rides, activities and more.

2023 Santa and His Reindeer at Sweet Eats Adventure Farm | Now- December 24

Santa and his real life reindeer are coming to Sweet Eats Adventure Farm!
You can take your own photos with Santa just by having a General Admission ticket which also grants you FULL ACCESS to over 30 different activities that are included. Apple Cannons, Pig races, pony rides, giant petting zoo, Metal maze, jump pads, treasure mountain, pipe races, and so much more! – Check out Santa’s schedule and more HERE!
Our pumpkin house from Fall Fest is being turned into a life size Gingerbread House which is a magical place for children to visit and great place for your holiday photos!

A Christmas Carol | Now – December 30 | Georgetown Palace

Broadway heavy hitters, Alan Menken (Disney’s Beauty and the BeastDisney’s The Little MermaidLittle Shop of Horrors) and Lynn Ahrens (Ragtime, SeussicalOnce on This Island), breathe fantastic new life into the classic tale of A Christmas Carol.

Bastrop River of Lights  | Now – January 2

Take in the River of Lights, numerous lighted displays in a variety of seasonal themes lining Bastrop’s scenic June Hill Pape River Walk. To access this one-half mile promenade, come down the stairs west of the intersection of Main and Pine Streets or select the fully accessible entrance at Fisherman’s Park on Farm Street. The River of Lights opens November 25 and continues every night until January 2 from dusk until 10pm.

Photos with Santa | Now – December 24

Photos with Santa is back this holiday season at Hill Country Galleria! Enjoy a magical experience that allows families to visit Santa inside his winter workshop cabin and take their own photos for FREE. There will be no professional photographer on site, but families are welcome to use their own cameras to capture this magical moment. Open select days from November 25th through December 24th, Santa’s Workshop will be located indoors, next door to Buenos Aires Café.

A Christmas Carol Now – December 16 | Hill Country Arts Foundation

A Christmas Carol recounts the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, an elderly miser who is visited by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man.

Holiday Bingo, Elf Hunt & S’mores |  Now – December 22 | Santa’s Jingle House

This event starts off with an exciting Elf Scavenger Hunt (60 elves are hiding in Santa’s Jingle House). After the hunt we have complementary drinks, cookies and a fabulous s’mores table. We will play several rounds of Holiday Bingo. You can win some great prizes!

It’s a Wonderful Life – Live Radio Play | Through – December 17 (Select Dates) | Bastrop Opera House

Don’t touch your dial! America’s favorite holiday classic is live on stage at a snowbound 1940s radio station, with every memorable character, wacky sound effect, and the heartwarming conclusion of the iconic film recreated live before your ears—and eyes! With humor and humanity, George Bailey’s tale of love, loss, and redemption mixes an exuberant cast into a radio days hit come to life! A heaven-sent gift for the entire family.

Strolling Carolers | Every Saturday in December | The Domain

The sounds of the season will drift through The Domain each Saturday night as strolling carolers roam the sidewalks! Saturdays from 6PM-8PM.

North Pole Flyer | Saturdays & Sundays Thru December 17

The classic North Pole Flyer departs from the historic 1912 Bertram Depot. The special 2-hour excursion on a real train features a visit (and hugs!) from Santa and Mrs. Claus, all-you-can-drink hot cocoa, and a locally baked holiday cookie. Each car is decorated for the season where passengers enjoy a live reading of the North Pole Flyer book-our railroad’s own Christmas Story! Our professional Santa will spend time in each car to “check your list twice” and pose for photographs before handing out a gift to each child to remember this special ride. Come be a part of the magic!

Sights and Sounds of Christmas Festival | December 7-9

San Marcos, Texas turns into a winter wonderland for Sights & Sounds of Christmas. Journey through time to the Town of Bethlehem where costumed actors and live animals set the atmosphere. Enjoy local children caroling, holiday concerts and a special visit from Santa every night when he arrives in unsuspecting ways. Make furry friends at the petting zoo, ice skate and enjoy “snow” falling in Central Texas, get a thrill on carnival rides, indulge in really good food and so much more. You’re sure to kick off your holiday season on a very merry note in San Marcos.


French Storytime | 10:30-12 | Toybrary

Wells Branch Luminary Festival | December 8

Stroll through the magical glow of KF Park at day one of the Luminary Festival! As the sunsets, more than 1500 luminarias are lit along the trail which can be enjoyed at anyone’s leisure. Once you’re done admiring the lights, there’s a handful of other free activities at your disposal. Hop on our haybale ride and journey through the neighborhood while singing carols as you pass your neighbors dazzling decorations. Take shelter from the cool night air in the Community Center, where free kids activities and crafts are taking place. Snag a cup of hot cocoa and sugar cookies, and venture out to the homestead, where Santa himself is waiting to hear all of your holiday wishes! This festive two-night event has a little bit of holiday joy for everyone.

The Grinch Movie | December 8

Are you a Dr. Seuss fan? Do you love Christmas and hot Chocolate? Then you are the perfect person to come to the City of Lakeway’s Grinch Movie Event on Friday, December 8 at 6 PM at the Lakeway Activity Center Parking lot. Continuing on with our trail of lights, we will be hosting a movie night in the parking lot where we will be playing the Grinch on the jumbo screen. Bring your whole family as we will have other games, vendors and hot chocolate. Plus, the Grinch himself will be there to entertain all the guest that attend.


Lighted Christmas Parade | December 9

Don’t miss more than 130 entries – from fanciful floats to fire trucks, unicycles to vintage cars, dancing Honey Bears to dignitaries, from Santa’s helpers to the big man himself. Join us, December 9, for this annual parade. Produced by the City of Bastrop, this joyful Bastrop tradition literally lights up the Bastrop Lost Pines Christmas festivities. The parade begins at dusk (approximately 6:00 p.m.) and will head south down Main Street.


Princess Holiday Tea | December 10

The Driskill will be transformed this holiday season into the whimsical and enchanting world of princesses. Held on The Driskill Grand Mezzanine, Princess Holiday Tea is perfect for children of all ages. Enjoy a lavish spread and a selection of bespoke blends. Following tea, join the princesses for singing, dancing, stories and photos!

Adult tickets include tea service and champagne. Child tickets include tea service, non-alcoholic beverages and accessories fit for royalty.

Young guests are encouraged to dress as their favorite princesses. We kindly request that adults refrain from wearing costumes to ensure an enjoyable experience for everyone and out of respect for our talented performers.

Community Hours |  3-5pm | Thinkery

Each week, Thinkery opens our doors for children and families to explore our exhibits for Admission by Donation.

43rd Annual Decker Challenge | December 10 | 7 am

The Decker Challenge is celebrating 45 year and is still running strong! Join Austin Runners Club on December 10 for the Decker Challenge Half Marathon, 5K and Kids Mile.

Featured Image Credit :: Noelle Westcott Photography

Weekend Events in Austin, Texas