Posted: 11/18/2021 | by Discover Lancaster

Lancaster County Christmas & Holiday Events

The holiday season in Lancaster County is full of themed attractions and fun events for young or old to enjoy.

Santa on the train at Strasburg Railroad in Lancaster

Explore light displays, a holiday-themed amusement park and so much more! Maybe you’ll see the Jolly Ol' Elf himself! Check out the full list of events with dates below, and plan to enjoy a holiday that is something truly special. And when it's time to ring in the New Year, do it Lancaster County style with a celebration in Downtown Lancaster, at one of the small town celebrations, or with a show.

Be sure to keep up to date with all things Lancaster by signing up for our e-newsletter and checking out upcoming events. You can also start planning your trip by requesting your free copy of the getaway guide.

Top Christmas Events in Downtown Lancaster

1. Small Business Saturday

The City of Lancaster kicks off the holidays with Small Business Saturday on November 27th, shop small and support local businesses, makers, and more.

2. Menorah Lighting

On November 28th head downtown to join the for the Menorah Lighting.

3. Mayor's Tree Lighting

December 3rd at 5pm, the City of Lancaster kicks off the weekend with the Mayor's Tree Lighting. Enjoy entertainment from Big Boy Brass, the arrival of Santa, the lighting of the tree and more festivities.

4. Santa Visits

Santa will also be making his way through the city December 10, 11, 17, and 18th with help from the city's fire and police departments.

5. Lancaster Shops Late

On December 9th you can enjoy late-night shopping during Lancaster Shops Late. Of course, bundle up and head downtown to ring in the New Year.

6. Christmas Spirit Light Show | Clipper Magazine

Christmas Spirit Light Show, running November 27th through January 1st, is an exciting, one-of-a-kind Christmas light display that you and your loved ones will enjoy from the comfort of your vehicle. As you journey through our mile-long track, you will be immersed and surrounded by hundreds of thousands of color-changing lights, animated and dancing in harmony with your favorite Christmas classics.

You can check out more drive-thru light shows here.

Other Not-to-Miss Christmas Events & Activities Around Lancaster

7. Santa and Goats | Amish Farm and House

Baby goats and hot cocoa, need we say more? Join us to take pictures with Santa and his ‘elves’ on December 11th. After taking pictures with our goats, enjoy fun family activities on our farm. This event is free and open to the public. We encourage you to bring the whole family- pets included!

8. Amish Christmas Cookie Tour | Amish Farm and House

Visit three Amish homes to enjoy homemade cookies. As you know, many Amish homes do not open their homes to strangers, this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The tour guide will drive you through the true back roads of Amish Country and introduce you to three Amish families. You'll spend about 25 minutes with each family, enjoy their company and cookies! You'll leave with cookies and a handwritten recipe to take home and try. Tours are held Fridays and Saturdays from Nov. 19th-Dec. 18th, 2021, departing at 11 am and 2 pm each of those days.

9. Kitchen Kettle Christmas | Kitchen Kettle Village

Whether you venture out and brave the cold or prefer the warmer climes of the great indoors - winter at Kitchen Kettle Village is a wonderland filled with exciting and unexpected things to do, see and experience. Enjoy holiday family fun with Santa and friends! Partake in a scavenger hunt around the village and be sure to bring your wish list to share with Santa. Tickets to the event include a meal voucher, festive bakery box, contactless photo opportunities and more! Foodies: don't miss out on dinner with Mrs. Claus and Yummie, listen to stories, receive a gift, enjoy photo opportunities and more within the Kling House Restaurant on select dates. You can also enjoy all the flavors of Kitchen Kettle Village with the Holiday Flavors Tasting Tour! Enjoy generous samples and personalized service, history about the village and more November 26 - December 17.

10. Christmas at the Rail Road | Strasburg Rail Road

All aboardSanta's Paradise Express, November 20 - December 24, for a tradition over 60 years old! Travel to Paradise, PA on a vintage steam train and welcome Santa aboard the train. You can also ride down to Leaman Place Grove aboard the Christmas Tree Train to pick out your own pre-cut tree and enjoy a roaring campfire. Join Santa on an excursion on the LO&S Motorcar for Santa's Christmas Trolley, where children ages 11 and under can take a professional photo with Santa and tell him what they are looking forward to this Christmas! The holiday fun at the Rail Road continues on the Night Before Christmas Train. Recall the old-fashioned nostalgia of Christmas and take-in the childlike anticipation of Christmas Eve!

11. Christmas Down on the Farm | Barnyard Kingdom
November 24 - December 19, enjoy Christmas at Barnyard Kingdom! Giant slides, fire pits, barnyard animals, elf scavenger hunt, and more! You can even take a train ride down to the Christmas tree fields and cut your own tree. On select dates, enjoy breakfast with Santa at the farm! A breakfast buffet in the barn, photos with Santa, and all the Christmas fun available at the farm.

12. Yuletide at Wheatland | LancasterHistory
Tour President James Buchanan’s Wheatland virtually this year for Yuletide at Wheatland! Join a tour guide, in real-time over Zoom, to traverse the festively decorated halls and rooms of the 1828 mansion. From the comfort of your home, learn about the public and personal life of James Buchanan through the lens of Yuletides and traditions past. From Yuletide menus and meals to how Christmastime was celebrated during the Civil War, viewers will learn how Buchanan and his family experienced Yuletide in the mid-1800s.

13. Christmas Lights & Ziplining | Refreshing Mountain Adventure Center
Enjoy the Christmas Lights Experience at Refreshing Mountain. With twice as many lights, there 8 miles of Christmas lights displayed. Drive through the Christmas light displays or zipline through the spectacle. For a complete immersive experience stay in a cozy Christmas-y cabin suites.

14. Christmas at Stone Gables Estate
Visit a fully decorated Star Barn, the Christkindl Market, meet Santa and his helpers, and more at the Christmas Village at Stone Gables Estate. All aboard for a magical narrated train experience through the estate on the Santa Express. You can also celebrate Christmas from the comfort of your car with the 4th annual drive-thru light show at the estate! Over 600,000 lights, new storyboards, and surprises await you.

15. Ice Cream with Santa | Turkey Hill Experience
Join Santa at Turkey Hill Experience to hear a Christmas Story, create a card and a craft, enjoy Mrs. Claus' cookies, and create your own holiday ice cream creation!

16. Christmas in Hershey
Join the sweetest place on Earth for Christmas Candylane! Over 5 million lights, your favorite rides and coasters, festive Hershey character experiences, Treeville at the Boardwalk and more await you this holiday season. You can also drive through over 2 miles of Christmas lights during Hershey Sweet Lights.

17. Dutch Winter Wonderland
Soak in thousands of lights, enjoy over 20 rides and attractions, and even meet Santa! Dutch Winter Wonderland kicks off on November 20th and runs through the end of December. You can also head out to Dutch Wonderland on December 18th and 19th for a craft fair featuring local vendors!

18. Scootin' with Santa
Join Strasburg Scooters Tours this holiday season for a one-of-a-kind tour of Lancaster County with Santa! Saturdays and Sundays December 4 - 19.

19. Christmas at the Theatre
Enjoy the arts this season with holiday shows! Winter Wonderland runs at the American Music Theatre November 9 - December 30, The Christmas Tree Ship runs at the Bird-in-Hand Stage November 4 - January 1, and Miracle on 34th Street runs at the Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre.

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