12 best US cities for Christmas celebrations

Where are the best US cities for Christmas? We've found festive fun from Los Angeles to New York. So if you really want to get into the seasonal spirit add these 12 Christmassy US destinations to your 2021 wish list.
New York's Rockefeller Center, all decorated surrounding the newly lit Christmas tree
New York's Rockefeller Center, all decorated surrounding the newly lit Christmas tree. Photo: Andrew F. Kazmierski/Shutterstock

Where are the best US cities for Christmas? We've found festive fun from Los Angeles to New York. So if you really want to get into the seasonal spirit add these 12 Christmassy US destinations to your 2021 wish list.

The Americana, Glendale, Los Angeles

The Americana is a personal favourite. It's an outdoor, up-scale shopping center and pulls out all stops at Christmas with a tremendous tree and fake snow storms - it's in Los Angeles. You can expect plenty of twinkling lights and naturally, Santa Claus is here too.

Get into the holiday spirit with a stay at The Brand Glendale 1645, right next door to The Americana. 

Winter WonderFest at Navy Pier, Chicago

Visit Winter WonderFest and soak up Christmas Chicago, without the icy weather. This winter wonderland is safely tucked indoors, but still has skating, rides galore and a splendid festive Ferris wheel. 

If you're thinking Chicago at Christmas, book Sable at Navy Pier and drop in on Winter Wonderfest. 

Orlando's one of the best US cities for Christmas

Christmas is magical in Orlando and you have to experience Disney World. Roll up to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party for unbelievable decoration, enchanting parades, live music and as much Christmas cheer as you could ever wish for.

Be right at the heart of the festivities this Christmas with a stay at Walt Disney World Swan in Orlando. 

Walt Disney World, Orlando. Photo: Don Nunn/FlickrWalt Disney World makes Orlando one of the best US cities for Christmas Photo: Shutterstock

Rockefeller Center, New York City

Rockefeller Center says Christmas loud and clear. It's an iconic Manhattan attraction with probably the world's most famous Christmas tree and definitely the best loved ice rink in New York. Plus it's close to Midtown so you can go shopping - or window shopping - round some of the US's most Christmassy stores. 

Don't miss a single magic NYC moment this Christmas, stay at Dylan Hotel NYC in Midtown. 

The Christmas decorations in The Rockefeller Center NYC. Photo: gary718/ShutterstockChristmas decorations at the Rockefeller Center, New York City. Photo: Shutterstock

Durango, Colorado

Durango in Colorado is The Polar Express town. Catch the vintage train at Durango Station and ride to the "North Pole" to collect Santa. Hot chocolate is served on-route and the conductor reads passengers The Polar Express story. And on the return journey, Santa hands out gifts. Don't forget to wear pyjamas!

Spin the Christmas magic out with an overnight stay at The Strater Hotel in Durango. 

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Park City, Utah

Visit Park City in Utah for a reliably snowy Christmas. It's one of the country's most famous ski resorts. Even Santa slides in for the frosty festive season and the town positively glows with holiday cheer. 

If you can't resist the idea of a white Christmas, book a snow break at The Chateaux Deer Valley in Park City. 

Trail of Lights, Austin

Head to Austin for Christmas and catch the legendary Trail of Lights. The ultimate Texas holiday event attracts 100s of 1000s of visitors each year to gaze at more than 2 million dazzling lights. Don't miss the yuletide rides and leave space for feasting at Austin's finest food trucks. 

Downtown Austin is cool and Christmassy, book Aloft Austin to make the most of the vibe. 

Christmas lights adorn motorcycle on 37th Street, Austin, Texas. Photo: Victor Engel/ShutterstockChristmas lights adorn a motorcycle on 37th Street, in Austin, Texas. Photo: Shutterstock

Washington D.C.

Of course Christmas in Washington D.C. is entirely unique. It's the only place to see the National Christmas Tree at the White House. If that's not festive enough, make for Maryland or Virginia. Both areas are well known for their mix of seasonal traditions and wintery fun. 

Want to wake up to the National Christmas Tree? Book The Architect in Washington D.C., it's minutes from the White House

Christmas Tree and White House at night. Photo: Orhan Cam/ShutterstockChristmas decorations in front of the White House, Washington D.C. Photo: Shutterstock

Smoky Mountain Winterfest, Tennessee

Smoky Mountain Winterfest is magical. Not only does it tout millions of lights each year, it has carolling, vintage trolley rides and glittering Christmas parades too. Plus it's in the Smoky Mountains' town of Pigeon Forge, which always has a fantastic holiday atmosphere. 

Book The Resort in Pigeon Forge and soak up the enchantment of Smoky Mountain Winterfest, day and night.

The Christmas Festival of Lights, Portland

The Grotto in Portland hosts the Christmas Festival of Lights every year. It rings in the season in the Pacific Northwest and lasts for an entire month. There's always lots to see and do, but the concerts, puppet shows, and carolling are show stoppers.

Stay at The Heath Hotel in Downtown Portland and get to know the city during the Christmas Festival of Lights,  

 Chtistmas light festival in Portland. Photo: Victoria Ditkovsky/ShutterstockChristmas lights in Portland. Photo: Shutterstock

Speedway Christmas, North Carolina

Visit Charlotte for Speedway Christmas. It's not a traditional holiday celebration, but locals look forward to this event every year. And who wouldn't be won over by watching Christmas movies on a 16,000-square-foot TV, horse-drawn wagon rides and photos with Santa?

Get into the spirit of Speedway Christmas with a stay at Home2 Suites in Downtown Charlotte. 

The New England Christmas Festival, Boston

Head to Boston for the New England Christmas Festival and some great holiday shopping. The light decorations make this festival a wonderland and it's a must-visit holiday attraction. Don't miss skating at Boston Common.

Make the most of Christmas in Massachusetts with a stay at CitizenM North Station in Boston.

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