Our Favorite 2023 Christmas Lights and Holiday Lights in Tampa Bay
Look no further, your guide to the best 2023 holiday lights in Tampa Bay is here! The holiday season is in full swing and there’s no better way to get into the holiday spirit than touring one of the city’s beautiful Christmas light displays.
Keep in mind that dates and events are subject to change, so always check with the event website before heading out the door.
(cover photo by Christmas in the Wild at ZooTampa)
TAMPA BAY’S FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS & SANTA’S VILLAGE
November 23, 2023-December 31, 2023 | 6-9 pm weekdays, 6-10 pm weekends
Hillsborough County Fairgrounds
Your hometown holiday festival returns with more lights, new entertainment, and the gift of family fun! From Thanksgiving Day until New Year’s Eve, Tampa Bay’s Festival of Lights and Santa’s Village envelops families in more than 1 million lights along an expanded 2-mile drive featuring hundreds of dazzling light displays. Santa’s Village is packed with holiday-themed rides, a Holiday Market, and the Hometown Hillsborough Historical Village. Visits with Santa, craft stations, Santa’s Barnyard, camel rides, holiday movies and live entertainment promise endless fun for the entire family.
ENCHANT Christmas Light Maze Adventure, Reindeer Games
Opening November 24 and running through December 31 at Tropicana Field
Enchant is an immersive experience weaving magic into every corner, perfect for joyful seasonal celebrations. Single and group tickets as well as private event bookings are all on sale now – experience the magic of Enchant this holiday season.
Each season of Enchant brings to life an immersive concept based on an original story by Enchant. In its fourth year, Enchant St. Petersburg will feature brand new magic as guests wander the World’s Largest Christmas Light Maze in search of the missing magic sleigh bells. In this story, forest animal friends of Santa’s reindeer thought it would be fun to fly Santa’s sleigh for a mischievous moment. So they hatched a plan to get the reindeer’s magic bells — and it worked! Help find the magic bells in time to save Christmas!
The best prices on tickets are available now at EnchantChristmas.com.
Best Holiday Lights in Tampa and Hillsborough County
November 11, 2023-January 7, 2024
Enjoy park-wide festive fun at this award-winning holiday event. The park becomes filled with holiday cheer as it transforms into Christmas Town and guests can enjoy holiday traditions with a twist. Ride the Holly Jolly Express train, view millions of twinkling lights from the top of a roller coaster, visit Santa in his workshop, and spend time with Rudolph and his friends from the classic holiday movie, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Guests can also enjoy festive live shows and take part in special holiday dining and shopping. Theme park admission is required.
November 17-December 30 (Closed Sundays), 6:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.
This Chick-fil-A store has a tradition of taking Christmas lights in Tampa to a whole new level and they’re back at it again with this year’s Christmas lights display. Even Santa comes to visit! Add this annual Tampa Bay Christmas light event to your family’s Christmas light holiday bucket list! Visit the store at 6299 W Waters Avenue, Tampa FL 33634.
Friday, November 17, 2023 at 5pm and running through January 1, 2024
Celebrate the magic of the holiday season at Curtis Hixon Park in downtown Tampa. The park sparkles with lights and festive holiday decorations. Guests can skate along downtown Tampa’s only outdoor ice rink while taking in views of the Tampa River Walk. The Shops of Winter Village will feature five boutiques from local markets and the Icicle Craft Kitchen of Winter Village will serve up some seasonal holiday treats. Admission to the Winter Village is free, but some activities like ice skating require tickets.
Sparkman Wharf is getting a holiday twist with Winter Wonder Wharf! On select dates in December, you can go caroling, enjoy a holiday remix singalong, and check out a holiday comedy show. There will also be a tree lighting on November 16, 2023 at 5pm.
Sparkman Wharf will continue celebrating the season through upcoming events:
- November 17: Tree Lighting
- December 2: A holiday performance featuring The Mistletones and BeatBoxer
- December 9: Rapping Carolers
- December 16: Electric violinist, LaRon Hear
Through the holiday season
Tampa’s Water Street is gorgeous at night with the trees decked out in shimmering lights with even more light displays along the way. Stop for a scoop of ice-cream at Chill Bros. and then pick up a cute house plant from Yura Vine Brothers as a hostess gift for your next party!
November 24 – December 30, 2023
Enjoy the magic of wildlife at night while celebrating the holiday season. The zoo will be transformed into a whimsical wonderland filled with lights, seasonal holiday treats and festive shows. There will be six illuminated zones of lights, two new light shows across the entire manatee circle, and a 30-foot Christmas tree with thousands of dancing lights.
Wander through the Ice Cavern in Africa as you’re surrounded by glowing lights. While you’re there, join Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer for some reindeer games in Wallaroo, take a ride on the Candy Cane Carousel, decorate cookies at Mrs. Claus’s shop, and celebrate a Caribbean Christmas in Key West.
Be sure to make your way to Twinkle Town Marketplace to meet Santa and take a photo with him. The Animal Giving Tree, which is located next to the Binturong habitat, gives guests the chance to give a gift to the animals that call ZooTampa home.
Select nights from November 24, 2023 – December 24, 2023
The Florida Strawberry Festival fairgrounds is transformed into an enchanting winter wonderland. Take in the wonder of the 1.5 million lights that adorn 200 Christmas trees from 4 to 40 feet. They will have rides, food, live entertainment, and a kids zone. Santa, Mrs. Claus, and Rudolph will also be there to celebrate and take festive photos with guests.
November 24, 25, 26, 2023
December 2, 3 , 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, 2023
Fridays from 4 pm to 8 pm
Saturday from 10:00 am to 8 pm.
Sundays from 10:00 am to 7 pm
Raprager Family Farm is exploding with Christmas cheer! Lights and decorations blanket the farm. Go on a holiday hayride and take a picture inside a giant inflatable snow globe. Check out the lighted gingerbread village, hear stories from Mrs. Claus and pay a visit to Santa and take pictures with him at his workshop. In addition to holiday-themed attractions, there will be a petting zoo, corn pit, bounce pillow, and crop maze. While you are there, be sure to stop by the Sweet Shop for some warm cinnamon roasted nuts, hot cocoa, and Christmas fudge.
NEW this year – buy a $15 pass and come back as often as you’d like, all season long!
Waterworks Park, Downtown Tampa
November 27, 2023 – January 1, 2024
Take a stroll along the Tampa Riverwalk among the festive holiday lights as the area transforms into a winter wonderland. Highlights include a 35-foot-tall LED lighted Christmas tree that floats in the harbor, a holiday selfie station at the Pirate Water Taxi ticket booth, a floating gingerbread lighted display, and a lighted pine tree forest. Hotels, restaurants, and bars along the Riverwalk will also have festive lighted displays.
Select dates in November and December | Holiday Lighted Boat Parade is on December 23, 2023
Don’t miss this water taxi cruise to view Tampa’s Christmas lights and holiday decorations. The Christmas Light cruise departs from the Tampa Convention Center, and the Christmas Light cruise includes Holiday Christmas carols and visit with pirate elves! Write a letter to Santa and pop it in the North Pole buoy. There is also a special Christmas light cruise for the Tampa Holiday Lighted Boat Parade on December 17, 2022. Ticket booth is located at the Tampa Convention Center by the Tampa Marriott Waterside; you can enter PWT7 – Convention Center/Marriott Waterside, Tampa, FL 33602 into google maps.
December 23, 2023 at 6:00 p.m.
Tampa’s largest boat parade begins at the southern tip of Davis Islands, travels through the Convention Center basin, and up to the Heights where the boats will turn around and head to Sparkman Wharf. Boats will be judges by pairs from Big Brothers and Big Sisters and the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners of the sailboat and motorboat competitions will each receive a trophy.
Many viewing spots along the Riverwalk between Armature Works all the way through the Sail Pavilion and over by Sparkman Wharf provide fantastic views of the parade.
Dec 1, 2023 – Dec 23, 2023
The Victorian Christmas Stroll is back for it’s 40th year! It’s the perfect way to step back into time at the Henry B Plant Museum and be dazzled by the beautifully decorated rooms, each with a different theme. This year, they will have a display of 40 vintage Santas in honor of 40 years.
Take in the beauty of a 14′ Christmas tree and travel back in time to the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. You just might be inspired by one of the beautiful trees!
Beginning December 1, 2023 every evening from 6:00pm-11:00pm
This neighborhood is one of the top areas to go see amazing holiday lights in Tampa Bay! The community has been hard at work putting together a display you can watch from your car. Tune to 95.5 FM as you approach to listen the music as its synchronized with the lights. Visit their Facebook page here for more.
November 24, 2023 -December 24, 2023 on Thursday-Sunday nights
This is an outdoor walking trail that’s about 1/4 mile long, filled with shimmering lights, outdoor movies, games and holiday music. There will even be visits with Santa. They ask you to wear comfortable close toed shoes, a face mask for when it gets busy, and bug spray just in case the mosquitoes come out. Tickets are $7 for everyone 3 and older. thesunkissedacres.com
Best Holiday Lights in Pinellas County
Select dates, November 30 – December 31, 2023
Experience a sparkling spectacle of art and lights during the inaugural Holiday Lights Immersive Experience! Visit Fairgrounds St. Pete to see the Mermaid Star Motel, Strawberry Room, and other whimsical art installations transformed for the holiday season. Included with daily admission.
Fridays and Saturdays December 1-18, 2023
Enjoy Christmas on the Farm! Petting zoo, minigolf, Christmas lights and even Florida snow and campfires!
November 24, 2022 – January 1, 2023
101 Central Park Dr, Largo, FL 33771
The annual family-friendly tradition at Largo Central Park will feature a spectacular holiday light display of over two million dazzling LED lights. Guests can also enjoy a stunning carousel and a seven-story Ferris wheel that offers breathtaking views of the lighted park.
Rides are $5 each or 5 for $20. It is free to park and stroll among the sparkly Christmas lights.
November 23, 2023-December 31, 2023
The gardens sparkle with one million LED lights that twinkle in a variety of bright colors. Vibrant laser lights and lighted figures are sure to wow guests of all ages. The Children’s Candy Cane Area will provide free kids crafts on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings.
November 24, 2023-January 3, 2024
The house is located at 2719 Oakdale Street South, St. Petersburg, FL
Looking for a Christmas light display in St. Petersburg? Oakdale Christmas House in St. Pete offers an amazing walk through Christmas light experience that is bigger and better than before! You’ll be amazed by the Oakdale Christmas House’s half million twinkling lights which have been ranked as among the world’s best Christmas light displays! Featured on both HGTV and The Today Show, this event is not to be missed.
November 25, 2023 – January 1, 2024
Kick off the holiday season with a tree lighting in North Straub park with Mayor Rick Kriseman and Santa! Stand along the pedestrian walkways at North and South Straub Parks in St Petersburg for this free light show on the water.
There will also be a Christmas lights and displays at Pioneer Park, Vinoy Park and the new St. Pete Pier.
December 9, 16, 17, 22, 2023 -January 1, 2024 (excluding Christmas Day)
Let’s get into the holiday spirit! Board the floating winter waterland at the St. Pete Pier. Guests will enjoy a sunset cruise with spectacular views on the festively decorated eco-vessel. There will be twinkling lights, seasonal surprises, “snowbird” sightings at the bird sanctuary, and ocean-themed activities. These trips are fun for all ages, and the perfect way to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with family and friends.
December 14-16, 2023, 6:00-9:00 pm
Enjoy holiday lights, a campfire, children’s activities, a trolley light tour, shopping, crafts, and more! Harbor Holiday Nights is FREE.
The Trolley Light Tour has a ticket fee of $5/person.
Best Holiday Lights in Pasco County, Hernando County, and Citrus County
November 11, 2023-December 31, 2023
Experience a reimagined Symphony in Lights! Dazzling new lights, holiday harmonies, and spectacular snowfalls are just part of the enchanting holiday events.
The Tree Lighting Celebration on November 12th at 5 p.m. will kick off the festivities, and will feature live music by Late Night Brass, stilt walkers, costumed characters, talented balloon artists, and Santa’s arrival. Symphony in Lights will continue nightly from 6-9 pm.
Weekends, starting November 23 through December 23, 2023
Drive-through nights December 26 – 30
11919 Alric Pottberg Rd., Shady Hills FL 34610
Enjoy great Christmas lights and holiday lights display in Port Richey! This Christmas light event takes place at the Concourse in Shady Hills in Pasco, a short Christmas light drive away from Tampa Bay! Take a ride on the Grand Concourse Railroad through the lighted Christmas Wonderland.
This Port Richey Christmas light event happens weeknights 6pm-9pm; Weekends 6pm-10pm.
November 24-25, December 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, and 23, 2023 from 6pm-9pm
Head to HarvestMoon Fun Farm for their very first dazzling Christmas light display! You can also take a stroll down Christmas Tree Lane, visit with the animals in the petting farm, sip on some Hot Chocolate, munch on some Kettle Corn, and more! Tickets are $10 per person for ages 3 and up. Kids ages 2 and under are free. Activities included with admission: Jumping Pillow, Petting Farm, Cow Train, Ball Zone, Hill Slide, Swings, Arts & Crafts, Photo Ops, and an enchanted hay ride.
Friday, December 8 · 6 – 10pm, December 9, 15, and 16
Cost: $5 | Children 5 and younger are free
The Friends of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park invite you to experience their holiday light display at Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. There will even be a chance to snap a photo with Santa’s Mermaid elves! Tickets are only available on Eventbrite here.
Starts December 2, 2023
Kids will love this Christmas celebration in Inverness, featuring train rides, live music and light displays at Liberty Park, a boat parade, and a visit from Santa himself. Visitors can enjoy the local competition for Lamp Post Decorations, too.
Starts December 8, 2023
This holiday event is a must-see. Stroll through this beautiful state park under a canopy of sparkling lights, make your own s’mores, and enjoy holiday music and refreshments. Instead of an entrance fee, guests are asked to bring a food item or toy for the Citrus United Basket of Inverness or pet feed for Citrus County Animal Services.
December 16th through December 22nd, 2023
Gates will open at 5:30PM and the celebration will run until 9PM.
The community can expect to see different entertainment and refreshments nightly. Enjoy Sebastian’s Winter Wonderland, a synchronized light, sound show and more! Donations will benefit the Friends of Homosassa Springs.
Best Holiday Lights in Polk County and Manatee County
December 1-30, 2023
The International Market World, 1052 US-92 in Auburndale
This is a drive through Christmas lights event near Tampa! First, you and your family will drive through Christmas lights for a mile to experience spectacular lights, and next if you choose, after seeing the drive through Christmas lights you can make a visit at Santa’s Village at the end of the drive through Christmas lights! Santa’s Village features rides, entertainment, a visit with Santa, and Holiday activities for children and adults of all ages!
December 13-17, 2023 from 6pm-9pm
The Palma Sola Botanical Gardens is hosting families for this free holiday lights even in the gardens. There will be donation boxes throughout the park if you feel inclined to make a donation to help support the community gardens. The gardens are located at 9800 17th Avenue NW in Bradenton.
Worth the Drive…
December 8, 2023-January 3, 2024 from 6-9 pm
Lights in Bloom® features more than two million lights illuminating the gardens and walkways. Don’t miss a holiday photo opportunity, activities, and entertainment. Food is available for purchase.
Early entry tickets (5:00 p.m.): $40 for non-members, $35 for members, $20 for children 5–17, free for children 4 and under.
Take a Day Trip to Orlando for these Holiday Light Displays
Just a couple of our favorites include Night of a Million Lights and Gaylord Palms ICE!
Every Wednesday through Sunday from Nov. 15 – Dec. 10, 2023 and every day Dec. 13 – 31, 2023
Island H2O Water Park
Holiday Nights at Island H2O Water Park is so much more than a dazzling lights display – it’s the one-stop spot for family fun, festive food, holiday shopping, and nightly entertainment – with proceeds benefitting Give Kids The World Village.
This dazzling and fun event is great for families, and for couples. There is a play area for little tykes, plus character and Santa Claus greetings. Guests can indulge in holiday shopping as they surf through the holiday market featuring local vendors with a showcase of unique gifts and handcrafted ornaments. Sip steaming mugs of cider and hot cocoa, enjoy holiday themed bites, and toast s’mores big enough to share all while enjoying unique live entertainment each night.
The weather forecast this Christmas at Gaylord Palms Resort in Kissimmee calls for a high of 9 degrees, with a 100% chance of ICE! In ICE! featuring A Charlie Brown Christmas, guests step into an arctic attraction – kept at a frosty 9 degrees – into a wondrous world of larger-than-life, hand-carved ice sculptures. After experiencing frozen fun inside ICE!, guests can enjoy a sleigh-full of live shows, immersive family events, millions of sparkling lights, a 60-foot-tall Christmas tree that comes to life in a kaleidoscope of color, and more all across the resort’s 64-acre winter wonderland.
St. Petersburg Drive By Christmas Lights Neighborhoods in Seminole, St. Pete
December 1 through December 31, 2021, 6:00 – 10:00pm
Drive through 3+ miles of St. Petersburg Christmas lights’ neighborhoods from 6pm to 10pm for a St. Petersburg Christmas light display and Christmas light show you’ll never forget!
This 3.2 mile Christmas light drive-by tour takes place in the Seminole/St Petersburg subdivisions of Lake Park Estates, Wieker, Lakeside Estates, and Lake Seminole Village, where these St. Petersburg residents generously decorate their homes and yards with beautiful Christmas lights, Christmas decorations, and even more Christmas lights for Tampa Bay to drive by and enjoy! Short drive by or drive across Tampa Bay for families looking to see some beautiful Christmas lights near Tampa and Clearwater.
102nd Ave & 109 Ave N, Seminole FL 33777 LightsofLakePark.com
For more holiday date ideas, check out:
- Celebrate the Holidays in Tampa Bay: Holiday Events, Lights, and More!
- 25+ Free Holiday Events in Tampa Bay for a Festive Date
- The Best New Year’s Eve Events in Tampa Bay Clearwater St Pete