12 Great Places to See Christmas Lights in the Blue Ridge Mountains

During the Christmas and Holiday season, families are always looking for where are the best places to see Christmas lights in the Blue Ridge Mountains.    Below are our top picks for Christmas Lights in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia.  If we missed one of your favorites, please let us know in the comments!

1 - Winter Lights, NC Aboretum in Asheville North Carolina

Our personal favorite, is Winter Lights at the North Carolina Aboretum in Asheville North Carolina.  This is walk-through and open-air display, that features thousands of lights that make the landscapes and trees glow.  

The show includes a 50ft animated Christmas tree that is just beautiful, and the center piece for this show.  You'll also see outdoor train, many different displays, and the beautiful lighted quilt garden.   The show has Cocoa, fires to warm yourself by, food, and more!

2 - Winter Wonderland, Winchester Virginia

This wonderful and beautiful light show allows you to experience fantastic holiday displays and music along the paved path at Clearbrook Park, near Winchester Virginia.

Visitors can take their time enjoying the sights and sounds of the season along the magical stroll through a winter wonderland. Clearbrook Park’s annual light show is a tradition that's sure to create lasting memories!

3 - Illuminights, Roanoke Virginia

Brighten your nights and explore the holiday spirit through a dazzling world of over 600,000 lights at Illuminights Winter Walk of Lights near Roanoke Virginia. Travel down our half-mile wooded path while taking in the sights and sounds of the season.   Visitors will experience 100,000 all new lights, new displays, trail enhancements and family activities!

While you’re there, shop for artisan crafts, roast marshmallows around the campfire, and enjoy additional family activities on select nights. 

4 - Winterfest, Pigeon Forge Tennessee

Photo by: Peter Ciro

Draped in more than 5 million holiday lights, Pigeon Forge creates a winter wonderland for locals and guests alike to enjoy during the city’s annual Winterfest celebration. The lights of Winterfest shine from early November until February.

From winter light displays to captivating holiday shows and so much more, here are just a few of the fun ways you can experience the delightful Pigeon Forge Winterfest Celebration.

5 - Enchanted Garden of Lights at Rock City Gardens, Chattanooga Tennessee

Warm your heart during this nighttime, holiday family tradition as you walk through Rock City Gardens' winter wonderland.   Just a short drive from downtown Chattanooga TN, this magical Christmas light experience is one of Chattanooga's memorable winter events for more than 27 years.

Take a stroll down the lighted Grand Corridor in Yule Town, experience the twinkle of icy lights in the Arctic Kingdom, and the Magic Forest comes alive to reveal exciting enchantments!

6 - Mountain Country Christmas Lights, Georgia

Photo by: JBL Photography

Mountain Country Christmas in Lights, is a holiday treat for the entire family at the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds in Hiawassee, GA.  The Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds transforms into a spectacular, magical holiday light show immersed in Christmas music, arts and crafts, food, fun, entertainment, photo opportunities, and a visit with Santa Claus!

7 - Tweetsie Christmas, Blowing Rock NC

Celebrate the holiday season as Tweetsie Railroad transforms into a winter wonderland for Tweetsie Christmas! Enjoy a nighttime Christmas light train ride, shopping, hot cocoa and s'mores by warm campfires, and thousands of dazzling lights throughout the park!   This is a magical holiday adventure for the whole family!

 8 - The Polar Express and Bryson City, North Carolina

THE POLAR EXPRESS™ with the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad is a 1¼ hour round-trip passenger excursion that comes to life as the train departs the Bryson City NC depot on a journey through the quiet wilderness for a special visit at the North Pole.

Set to the sounds of the motion picture soundtrack, guests on board will enjoy warm cocoa and a treat while listening and reading along with the magical story. Children’s faces show the magic of the season when the train arrives at the North Pole to find Santa Claus waiting.

Santa will board THE POLAR EXPRESS™, greeting each child and presenting them with a special gift as in the story, their own silver sleigh bell. Christmas carols will be sung as they return back to the Bryson City Depot.  Be sure to walk around beautiful downtown Bryson City, as it decorated for Christmas, with thousands of lights.

 9 - Dollywood's Smoky Mountain Christmas, Pigeon Forge Tennessee

The spirit of the season shines brightest during Smoky Mountain Christmas at Dollywood in Pigeon Forge TN. The skies dance with the glimmer of more than 5 million twinkling lights and the sounds of our award-winning rides fill the air with Christmas cheer.

Family memories will be made when you take in a heartwarming holiday show, catch a festive ride on the Dollywood Express, or enjoy seasonal treats packed with classic flavor. The night ends with a celebratory crescendo of returning guest favorite Merry & Bright—a seasonal fireworks spectacular sure to inspire family memories to treasure for a lifetime.

Dollywood's Smoky Mountain Christmas is one of the most beautiful holiday light displays we've ever seen!

 10 - Lake Julian Festival of Lights, Asheville North Carolina

The mountain family tradition returns for the 20th year, longer than any other drive through holiday lights display in the area.  This driving-only tour includes thousands of dazzling lights and displays placed along an enchanted journey on the road circling Lake Julian Park.

 11 - High Country Lights, Galax Virginia

High Country Lights is a musical light show featuring over one hundred thousand Christmas lights choreographed to your favorite sounds of the season.  The show can be seen nightly starting at 6:00 p.m, November 25, 2021 - January 2, 2022, and ends at 10:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11:00 p.m. Friday & Saturday.  Admission is free.  

 12 - Biltmore Candlelight Christmas Evenings, Asheville North Carolina

Christmas at Biltmore - Glittering holiday decorations are placed at each area of the estate from Biltmore House to Antler Hill Village, home to our cozy Village Hotel, four-star Inn, award-winning Winery, shops, and restaurants.

With more than 100 decorated trees, 10,000 ornaments, 100,000 twinkling holiday lights, and an array of festive Christmas displays, you’ll want to linger longer to experience all that Christmas at Biltmore has to offer.  Biltmore is magical to begin with, but Christmas as Biltmore is a whole new level.  Be sure to reserve a candlelight tour of the house!

About the author

Larry Deane is co-owner of Blue Ridge Mountain Life. He has spent more than 20 years exploring the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains and has a deep passion for nature, history, storytelling, and adventure. Along with his wife Jenn, they combined these passions to create Blue Ridge Mountain Life, a travel guide to these stunning mountains they are fortunate to call home.

Larry has more than 20 years of experience as a writer and journalist, and has established himself as a leading voice and expert for Blue Ridge Mountains. He is also an avid hiker, photographer, and videographer. He loves sharing his mountain adventures and knowledge with more than 500,000 people per month on Blue Ridge Mountain Life.


You may also like

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}