Skipping our regular blog schedule this week, but wanted to leave you some tips if you happen to be spending Christmas in Vegas! Before we headed to Atlanta, we hunted down the best Christmas displays in Las Vegas.
You best prepare yourself, because the strip will be insanely busy on Christmas day since everything is open. Restaurants will be packed and buffets will be double the price. While there is a lot to see and do, here’s what we thought would be worth your while.
[ Things are a bit different this year with the pandemic. We’ll try to keep this as updated as possible, but with everything constantly changing be sure to check each spot for closures or restrictions. ]
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Last Updated: December 16, 2020
5 Ways to Have the Perfect Christmas in Las Vegas
Be sure to check the current hours, rules, and regulations. Many locations have suspended events this year or have limited hours.
1. Cosmopolitan Ice Skating Rink
- Dec 18, 2020 – 3 – 11 pm
- Dec 19 – Jan 3, 2021 – Noon – 11 pm
- Dec 24 – 25, 2020 – Noon-Midnight
- Dec 31, 2020 – Noon – 1 am
Dates: Dec 7 to Jan 4, 2020
They have the best Christmas displays of any vegas hotels! Best of all it’s open 24/7 and it’s free. We checked out many of the other hotels, and they just don’t do Christmas displays like Bellagio does. Also the Fountains of Bellagio is now set to some Christmas classics perfect for the holiday season
3. Ethel M Chocolates Botanical Cactus Garden
Dates: Nov 5 to Jan 5, 2020
Hours: Dusk to 10 pm, until 8 pm on Dec 24 and Dec 31, Closed Christmas Day
The Ethel M Chocolate Factory is one of our favorite spots to visit in Vegas at Christmas. Their Botanical Cactus Garden is decked out in Christmas lights and you can see them from 5 pm to 10 pm. It’s always free admission, and you can see the regular factory tour we took here. Santa even shows up from 5 pm-9 pm.
Note: Because of covid restrictions, they are completely booked for the season, but you can show up and see if there are any cancellations.
4. Christmas Tree at the Venetian
Las Vegas at Christmas wouldn’t be complete without hunting down a tree. This 65 foot tall Christmas Tree with 50,000 lights is in the center of Doge’s Palace plaza. The Grand Canal Shoppes also have decorations you can check out.
5. Town Square Tree and Snow in the Square
Town Square has a beautiful 45 ft Christmas tree and play area for kids.
Plus, it’s your rare chance to see snow in Vegas. Snow in the Square is Nov 21 – Dec 23, 2020, Mon– Thurs at 7 pm and Fri – Sun at 7 pm and 8 pm. It lasts for 10 minutes.
Closed This Year
Dates: Dec 1 – 30, 2019 (Holiday Show)
Hours: Mon – Wed 6 pm – 9 pm, Thurs – Sun 6 pm – 9 pm. Snow is scheduled to fall by The LINQ Fountain Stage at 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. nightly
There are decorations, music, carolers, and snowfall every half hour making it the perfect backdrop for Vegas at Christmas. Also, right behind the High Roller is now a 30 ft tall hill made of real snow for tubing (Cost: $5 a ride or $20 for an all-day pass)
Every hour, there’s a holiday light show and snow at the fountain stage.
Note: This year, we didn’t see any tubing, but we did see Christmas decor and a tree along the promenade.
More Christmas Activities in Las Vegas
If time permits, you can also check out:
- A Very Terry Christmas
- Area 15 Wanderland (Nov 27 – Dec 27, 2020) – tree-lined village with aliens.
- City of Henderson WinterFest 2020 – Great for the whole family (Dec 11 – 12, 2020)
- Cowabunga Bay Christmas Town (Open November 29 to December 31, 2020)
- Downtown Summerlin Rock Rink – ice skating, a holiday train, and 40 ft tree.
- Fashion Show Mall (TBA)
- Glittering Lights Christmas Display at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Nov 13, 2020 – Jan 10, 2021)
- Grand Canyon – a great spot to explore to stay outdoors
- Holiday at The Park (TBA)
- Las Vegas Santa Run (Dec 5 – 26, 2020) – it’s virtual this year.
- Mystic Falls Winter Wonderland Laser Light Show (Temporarily Closed)
- New York New York Christmas Tree (pictured below)
- Opportunity Village’s Magical Forest (TBA)
- The Palazzo Waterfall Atrium and Gardens Display
- Red Rock Canyon – nothing special for the holidays but the weather is perfect to explore!
- Santa in the Shipwreck at the Shark Reef Aquarium on the weekends (TBA)
- Silverton Aquarium’s Scuba Santa (weekends in Dec)
- Smith Center Shows (TBA)
- Springs Preserve Holiday Express (Temporarily Closed)
- Tournament of Kings Holiday Dinner Show (Temporarily Closed)
- Tropicana’s Holiday in Paradise Christmas Display (Nov 26, 2020 – Jan 3, 2021)
- Winter’s Village at Green Valley Ranch and Red Rock Casino
- Wynn’s Winter Wonderland (December)
Where to Take Santa Pictures in Las Vegas
- Boulder City Santa Express (Nov 27 – Dec 23, 2020, Weekends only at 5 pm, 6 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm)
- Ethel M Holiday Cactus Garden (Dec 2 – Dec 23, 2020, 4 – 9 pm) – currently completely booked, but you can try to show up and see if there are any cancellations.
- Fashion Show Mall (Nov 20 – Dec 24, 2020) – Reservations required.
- Galleria Mall (Nov 27 – Dec 24, 2020, Thurs – Sun noon to 6:30 pm)
- Town Square (Nov 23, 2020 – Dec 24, 2020) – Make reservations here. Reservations required.
- How to Spend Valentines Day in Las Vegas – 15 Romantic Things to Do for Couples in Vegas
- 25 Free Things to Do in Las Vegas
- Your Ultimate Las Vegas Bucket List
We’ll be flying back on Christmas Eve and spending Christmas day in Las Vegas, but we’re not quite sure what we’ll be doing yet. We can’t decide between going ice skating and tubing, or curling up in bed and watching Christmas movies all day. Both sound like perfectly suitable choices.
How will you be spending your Christmas in Las Vegas?
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“Discovery consists not of seeking new lands but in seeing with new eyes” – M. Proust
Esther + Jacob
Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, which is one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found both near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.