Another holiday season has arrived, and once again, we offer our ultimate list of holiday light displays in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. Pack the family in the car, dress warmly, turn the radio to some Christmas music, and enjoy the best in electrical Yuletide illumination the DMV has to offer!
Lights on the Bay
Sandy Point State Park
- 1100 E. College Pkwy., Annapolis, Md.
- Nov. 18-Jan. 1
- 5-10 p.m.
- Cars $15, large vans and minibuses $30, buses $50
Lights on the Bay offers a scenic drive featuring more than 60 displays illuminating the roadway. 3-D glasses can be purchased upon admission to the park for an even more magical experience. For more information, visit http://www.lightsonthebay.org.
Miracle on 34th Street
- 720 W. 34th St., Baltimore, Md.
Although not technically in the DMV, this block of homes, affectionately known as “Christmas Street,” in Baltimore’s Hampden neighborhood offers a dazzling display of lights every year and is worth the drive.
Calvert County, Maryland
Annmarie Garden in Lights
Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Art Center
- 13480 Dowell Road, Dowell, Md.
- Dec. 1-Jan. 1 (closed Dec. 4-5 and 24-25)
- 6-9 p.m.
- $6 per person, children ages 4 and under free, Annmarie members free
A walking tour through the garden features handmade, one-of-a-kind Christmas light sculptures. For more information, visit http://www.annmariegarden.org/annmarie2/content/garden-lights-magical-light-show.
Fairfax County, Virginia
Winter Walk of Lights
Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
- 9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court, Vienna, Va.
- Through Jan. 7
- 5:30-10 p.m. (last admission at 9:30 p.m.)
- Adults $13-$16; children ages 3-12 $8-$10; children age 2 and younger free; timed tickets required and can be purchased online (recommended) or at the door, but availability is limited
The Winter Walk of Lights, now in its sixth year, follows a half-mile path of lights and unique animated displays. For more information, visit https://www.novaparks.com/events/winter-walk-of-lights.
Bull Run Festival of Lights
Bull Run Regional Park
- 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville, Va.
- Nov. 22-Jan. 7
- Sunday-Thursday 5:30-9:30 p.m.; Fridays, Saturdays, and holidays 5:30-10 p.m.
- $20 per car Nov. 22-Dec. 1, Dec. 3-8, Dec. 10-14, and Jan. 1-7; $25 Dec. 2, Dec. 9, and Dec. 15-31
The Bull Run Festival of Lights features a 2.5-mile drive through the park and a holiday village to enjoy rides, refreshments, and photos with Santa. For more information, visit https://www.novaparks.com/events/bull-run-festival-of-lights.
Symphony of Lights
Merriweather Post Pavilion
- Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods, Columbia, Md.
- Nov. 21-Jan. 1 (closed Nov. 27, Dec. 4, Dec. 11, Dec. 18, and Dec. 31)
- 6:30-10 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays; 5:30-10 p.m. weekends and holidays
- $20 per car, $25 on Saturdays
The Symphony of Lights features more than 100 larger-than-life holiday light creations, a laser light show, and a 3-D holiday video. For more information, visit http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/howard_county_general_hospital/ways_give/howard_hospital_foundation/foundation_events/symphony_of_lights/drive_through.html.
Winter Lights Festival
Seneca Creek State Park
- 11950 Clopper Road, Gaithersburg, Md.
- Nov. 24-Dec. 31 (closed Christmas)
- Sunday-Thursday 6-9 p.m.; Saturday 6-10 p.m.
- $12 per car, SUV, or minivan Monday-Thursday, $15 weekends
The Winter Lights Festival is in its 22nd season and features more than 380 illuminated vignettes and 65 animated displays along a 3.5-mile drive through Seneca Creek State Park. For more information, visit http://www.gaithersburgmd.gov/leisure/winter-lights-festival.
The Garden of Lights
- 1800 Glenallen Ave., Wheaton, Md.
- Nov. 24-Jan. 1 (closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day)
- Sunday-Thursday 5:30-9 p.m. (last car admitted at 8:30 p.m.), Friday-Saturday 5:30-10 p.m. (last car admitted at 9:30 p.m.)
- Cars/vans $25 Monday-Thursday, $30 weekends; no pedestrian entry
The Garden of Lights features more than a million lights, as well as a seasonally themed G-Scale model train exhibit at the South Conservatory. For more information, visit http://www.montgomeryparks.org/parks-and-trails/brookside-gardens/garden-of-lights.
Festival of Lights at the LDS Temple
Washington D.C. Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
- 9900 Stoneybrook Drive., Kensington, Md.
- Nov. 30-Dec. 31
- Dusk-10 p.m.
The D.C. LDS (Mormon) Temple Festival of Lights, now in its 40th year, features more than 650,000 lights, a live outdoor nativity scene, and live musical performances. For more information, visit http://dctemplelights.lds.org.
Loudoun County, Virginia
Spectacular Musical Tree
Village at Leesburg
- 1602 Village Market Blvd. SE, Leesburg, Va.
- Through Jan. 1
- Noon-9 p.m., shows start on the hour
Start a new holiday tradition by visiting this amazing five-story-tall tree, with a snowfall topper and more than 15,000 dazzling lights, that performs daily music and light shows. For more information, visit http://villageatleesburg.com/event/spectacular-musical-tree-shows-2/all/.
Winter Festival of Lights
Watkins Regional Park
- 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro, Md.
- Nov. 24-Jan. 1
- 5-9:30 p.m.
- $10 per car or van ($15 for three-visit passes), $20 for mini-buses and limos, $30 for buses; cash only; admission on Dec. 4 and Christmas is free
The Winter Festival of Lights features a drive-through display of more than a million lights. Be sure to bring canned goods to donate to local food banks. For more information, visit http://www.mncppc.org/742/Festival-of-Lights.
ZooLights at the National Zoo
Rock Creek Park
- 3001 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.
- Nov. 24-Jan. 1 (closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve)
- 5-9 p.m.
- Free admission; parking is $11 for FONZ members, $22 for non-FONZ members
The National Zoo is again hosting its holiday display spectacular, which includes live musical performances, a model train exhibit, and, of course, the zoo residents. New for 2018 is the Glow Zone, a free glow-in-the-dark play area for children. For more information, visit https://nationalzoo.si.edu/events/zoolights.
What impressive holiday light displays in the DMV did we miss that should be on this list?