Christmas in Denver, Colorado: 6 top events to check out
Blossom of lights
This is probably my favorite Christmas activity. It doesn’t quite feel like Christmas until I wander the paths of the Denver Botanic Gardens to admire the ever-changing display of lights and colors that illuminate the gardens.
This event has been held at the parks for three decades, and every year, it gets better with more and more lights and displays. This holiday extravaganza takes place at our York Street location. Holiday gifts and warm beverages are available for purchase at Offshoots Café and The Hive Garden Bistro.
You can visit this winter wonderland from November 17th to January 7th. Tickets must be purchased in advance and entry is timed. Hurry and get your tickets because many places are already sold out.
Path of lights
While the Blossom of Lights event takes place more in downtown Denver at the York Street location, the Trail of Lights takes place at the Chatfield Farms location near the foothills. Here, you can stroll among illuminated boxelder trees, cottonwoods, and pine trees to admire the twinkling lights. The trail is located less than a mile from Winter Wonderland.
As you walk you will see a light show coordinated with music, singing Christmas trees and the lighting of antique tractors and models. There are light tunnels to enter and snacks and hot drinks to purchase. On select dates throughout the holidays, there is also a Holiday Market. Tickets must be purchased in advance. For information about both events, visit the Desert Botanical Gardens website.
Still haven’t had enough of Christmas lights? Head to Zoo Lights at the Denver Zoo. For the past 33 years, the Denver Zoo has been transporting children and adults alike to a winter wonderland, featuring more than 80 acres filled with three million lights.
This year brings even more magic with new moving light sculptures, returning favorites and ice sculpting exhibits, all inside the zoo. Seasonal craft cocktails and holiday desserts are available for purchase. Come for the Christmas spirit and stay for the elephants.
This year, there is an adults-only night as well as a sensory-friendly night. For more details and to purchase tickets, visit the zoo’s website.
This is one of my favorite Christmas markets to browse for several reasons. Firstly, it’s outside so all the winter feelings surround you and put you in the spirit. Secondly, it has a German feel, by which I mean you really feel like you are in an authentic German holiday market. There are handicrafts, local and European foods to taste and buy. You can buy some Polish pierogi from the Pierogi Factory or perhaps you prefer some Russian style crepes from Blinczyki Crepes.
Besides crafts and specialty foods, you can also find live entertainment at this free market. Check out the lineup to plan your visit to Christkindlmarket at Denver Civic Center Park.
Polar Express train journey
This is for kids, or for kids at heart. Taking place at the Colorado Railroad Museum in the newly renovated Polar Express Pavilion, this three-part experience is sure to delight. Gather around the tables in the pavilion and start the evening with classic Christmas carols. This leads to a cabaret style show that you can enjoy while snacking on cookies and drinking hot chocolate.
Story of the Pole clarification Everything will be re-enacted before you move on and are welcomed on board the train itself. Enjoy the ride as you head to the North Pole to watch Santa’s elves sing and dance as they prepare for Christmas.
When the bullet train returns, you will have the opportunity to visit Santa and receive a special gift. For more details about this amazing experience, visit the Polar Express Train Ride website.
This is more for adults, although children are welcome too. Do you remember the days of summer camp? Well, imagine it’s all ripe and wintery – that’s Christmas camp. Held this year at Stanley Market, this 15,000-square-foot, 360-degree kaleidoscope of Christmas cheer and nostalgia is an event not to be missed.
Step out of the cold and into a holiday dreamscape filled with wonder and awe. Meet Santa, drink craft cocktails, enjoy Christmas sights old and new, and rejoice in the joy of the season. For more information and tickets, visit the Camp Christmas website.
There is no shortage of Christmas events and experiences to try in Denver. The city is really going all out for the holiday season. Whether you’re just visiting or you’re a long-time local, you’re sure to find something to put you in the Christmas spirit.