The return of traditional favorites and new exciting additions promise to make San Antonio the go-to destination for the holidays.
New this year is Lightscape at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, November 19 – January 2. This massive light extravaganza debuts in Texas after sold out shows in the UK. Visitors can enjoy the unique flora of the 38-acre gardens immersed in the magical glow of thousands of twinkling lights and displays set along a beautifully illuminated one-mile path. The show includes installations unique to Texas created by local and international artists.
Visitors will not want to miss the cherished River Walk activities – kicking off with the return of the Ford Holiday Parade November 26 under 100,000 multicolored lights twinkling above the winding River Walk, draping from some 300-year cypress trees and creating a magical canopy through January 10. For the parade itself, more than 20 highly decorated barges with costumed characters, music and more float by entertaining all. San Antonio’s holiday spirit on the River Walk continues after the parade. The first three weekends of December, the Ford Fiesta de las Luminarias returns with more than 2,000 luminarias (small sand-filled bags with candles) lining the banks of the River Walk as singers from the Ford Holiday Boat Caroling float by on the river (December 2-23).
A city of blended cultures and always in Fiesta-mode, activities can be found across San Antonio for all tastes and ages. Here is a sampling of what the Alamo City has lined up for 2021:
- The Alamo – the Alamo grounds will be decorated with festive lights and decorated tree in the plaza, November 19 – January 3. Homemade Christmas will feature historical crafts, 19th century trades, and carols to showcase Texans celebrated Christmas in the mid-1800s.
- Pearl – Celebrate the season with Holiday Night Markets, Chanukah celebration, Posada carols, and more, starting November 19.
- Morgan’s Wonderland – the world’s only ultra-accessible theme park hosts Wonderland Christmas on 13 select evenings November through Dec. 23. The fully inclusive Morgan’s Wonderland features special holiday entertainment, thousands of shimmering lights and festive decorations at the 25-acre park. Those with physical and cognitive special needs receive free admission.
- Natural Bridge Caverns – Christmas in the Caverns returns to Natural Bridge Caverns with live Caroling in the Caverns, the Trail of Lights walk-through, synthetic skating rink, outdoor s’mores station, AMAZEn’ Reindeer Round Up, a 30-foot musical Christmas tree, and Spelunker Claus.
- Rotary Ice Rink at Travis Park – Ice skating and a decorated tree at historic Travis Park downtown will run from after Thanksgiving to January 22.
- San Antonio Zoo – At Zoo Lights, guests see life-sized animals from the savanna, including a 15-foot-tall illuminated giraffe in Starry Safari while sipping hot cocoa; stroll under a unique display of lights, roast s’mores, decorate cookies with Mrs. Claus, and visit Santa. There is a high-energy Lakeside Light Show featuring pixel technology combined with a custom soundtrack guaranteed to have all dancing to favorite Christmas tunes along with Latin inspired songs.
- SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration – The largest Christmas event in Texas returns November 11 – January 2. The marine life park will transform into a holiday wonderland featuring millions of sparkling lights, decorations, holiday festivities, and delectable holiday treats and eats. This year’s event also includes brand-new shows and entertainment, and an exclusive pass member scavenger hunt.
- Six Flags Fiesta Texas – Holiday in the Park returns with wondrous holiday enchantment featuring the park’s dazzling Holiday Express train ride, enchanting caroling Christmas tree family, and the family favorite spectacular live nativity show, The Majesty of Christmas, November 20 – January 2.
For even more light-filled imagery and holiday celebrations, plus event details, including dates, hours and pricing, go to VisitSanAntonio.com/holidays.
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