Holiday Activities in Orlando (2021)
The turkey was stuffed and now so are we! What’s next to do with the kids this holiday season? Christmas light shows are fun, but what else is there? Take a look at our list of holiday activities to do with kids in the Orlando area.
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Holiday Activities in Orlando
Here are fun holiday activities taking place this holiday season in Orlando.
November 30 – December 4
The 2nd Annual Chanukah Celebration will be held in the Lake Nona Town Center on Tuesday November 30, 2021. Take your family along to watch the lighting of the giant menorah and after the lighting, enjoy the live entertainment, free face painting, and other activities for the kiddos.
Chanukah Night with the Orlando Magic
This is not the typical start to the holiday season, but it is certainly fun! Join the Orlando Magic on December 1, 2021 to light a menorah in the stadium making it the largest menorah lighting ceremony in Central Florida. Before the game, enjoy a pre-game concert as well as some in game interactions. The added bonus?! Stay and watch the Orlando Magic take on the Denver Nuggets!
City of Orlando Christmas Tree Lighting
Start the holiday season off at the City of Orlando Christmas Tree Lighting on December 3. There will be holiday performances to get you in the Christmas spirit and food trucks as well.
Light Up Winter Garden
Winter Garden will be starting off their holiday season with the lighting of the Christmas Tree on December 3. Following the tree lighting, there will be fun family activities to enjoy.
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Busy on Saturday December 4? If not, head to Downtown Avalon for Avalon Aglow. It is a free event for the family that has a parade, real snow, and fireworks at the end of the night.
Winter on the Avenue
Go on over to Winter Park for Winter on the Avenue taking place on December 3. They will be lighting the menorah for the 6th night of Hanukkah and lighting the Christmas Tree. There will be strolling carolers, snow slides, holiday jazz and a holiday movie playing in the park.
Winter Garden Christmas Parade
Take in Winter Garden’s annual Christmas Parade on December 4. There will be fun performances and of course an appearance by Santa himself.
Winter Park Annual Christmas Parade
The Winter Park Annual Christmas Parade is in its sixty ninth year, making it the oldest running Christmas Parade in Central Florida. The parade will be held on December 4th at 9am. After the parade, make it a fun filled day for the family and check out all that Winter Park has to offer like local shops and eateries.
The name just sounds fun, doesn’t it? Jingle Jam is being held this year on December 4 in Downtown Sanford. It is a free holiday concert with live music, carnival games., food trucks, and of course, pictures with Santa! Bring the whole family down between 4pm and 10pm and check out was Jingle jam has to offer.
Mount Dora Lighted Boat Parade
Ready for a parade with a twist? Check out the Mount Dora Lighted Boat Parade on Saturday December 4. Local boat owners create ornate designs with holiday lights and cruise down Lake Dora to a nautical feel to the holiday season.
Holly Jolly Sounds of the Season
During the holiday season, there is nothing better than listening to the music of the season. The Holly Jolly Sounds of the Season is a festive selection of holiday classics performed by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra’s brass and percussion sections. It runs December 4 – 5, 2021.
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December 5 – 11
Light Up So-Do
Celebrate the beginning of the holiday season at Light Up So-Do on December 5. Kids can write a letter to Santa, get their face painted, go on a train ride, jump on a bounce house, enjoy live performances and so much more. A $5 donation is requested.
Holiday Pops in the Park
Grab a blanket and a picnic and head on over to Central Park in Winter Park on December 5 for the annual Holiday Pops in the Park show. Enjoy some great holiday classics played by the Orlando Philharmonic.
A Holiday Homecoming
You can’t have a holiday season without music and the Central Florida Community Choir and CFCArts Symphony Orchestra delivers! After being on hiatus, A Holiday Homecoming gives you all of the feels of the holiday season with singing and dancing. The show runs from December 9 – 10, 2021 and is sure to kickstart your holidays!
Holiday Movie at Lake Eola Park – The Santa Clause
Take the kids to watch a new holiday classic, The Santa Clause, at Lake Eola Park on December 11. Bring chairs, blankets and a picnic dinner and enjoy the movie with family and friends.
Violectric Holiday Show
The annual Violectric Holiday Show is back on December 11. The concert features holiday classics with a rock twist. It is a perfect option for tiny rockers in your household.
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December 12 -18
The Nutcracker by The Russian Ballet of Orlando
Take the kids to see The Nutcracker ballet this holiday season. It will be performed by the Russian Ballet of Orlando at the Walt Disney Amphitheater in Lake Eola Park on December 18. If you have ever wanted to take the kids, but didn’t want to spend the money because you weren’t sure they would like it, then you are in luck as this performance is free.
Holiday Lights Bike Tour
Spread some holiday cheer while staying healthy! The fourth annual Holiday Lights Bike Tour in Belle Isle offers anyone that would like to attend a chance to bike through the community. Deck out your bicycles and join the festivities on Monday December 20 at 6pm. It is a free event however, there will be a donation box there and all proceeds will benefit the Belle Isle Police Department. There will be food trucks after the tour for families to enjoy pizza and ice cream.
Clara’s Christmas Adventure
Visit the Land of Sweets with Clara and the Nutcracker on Clara’s Christmas Adventure. Along their journey, they encounter the acrobatic Arabians, dancing Russians and of course the Sugarplum Fairy.
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A Christmas Carol
In this fun, new adaptation of the Christmas classic, Jim Helsinger brings to life Ebenezer Scrooge. His version of A Christmas Carol has all your favorite Christmas songs and great special effects. The show runs December 1 – 24, 2021 and is sure to become a family holiday favorite. Go an hour before your chosen showtime and enjoy the Holiday Wonderland. Take note, children under five will not be admitted to the theater.
Christmas At Gaylord Palms
If you have never experienced Christmas at Gaylord Palms, put this event on your Christmas “bucket list.” This show is like no other. There is something for everyone to do – light shows, Snow Flow Mountain, Build A Bear Workshop, Elf Training, and photos with Santa, just to name a few! Christmas at Gaylord Palms will run from November 19 – January 2, 2022.
Colorful Christmas at Crayola Experience Orlando
Grab the kiddos and head over to enjoy the Colorful Christmas at Crayola Experience Orlando. The Christmas excitement runs from November 20 – January 3 with all kinds of holiday activities like a life sized snow globe, a light show with Scarlet and friends, and the kiddos can create one of a kind gifts to take home.
Curry Ford West Picture Perfect Holidays
If you are looking for a great place to take your holiday photos, then check out Curry Ford West’s Picture Perfect Holidays. There are five fun backdrops spread around the area where you can take family photos. Backdrops will be available December 12-27.
Dinos in Lights
If your kids love dinos, then you’ll want to take them to see Dinos in Lights at the Orlando Science Center. Stan the T-Rex and his dino friends put on a fun sound and light show for all their human friends.
Downtown for the Holidays
Take a trip to Downtown Orlando to experience all the festivities of the season. From November 12 – December 17, 2021, stroll through Downtown for the Holidays and enjoy all things holiday like the Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree or a holiday movie on the east lawn of Lake Eola. There are plenty of events so plan to enjoy them all!
Enzian Theater’s Twelve Days of Christmas
Enzian Theater will be showing 12 holiday classics for the entire family to enjoy. Movies include Scrooged, The Santa Clause, Home Alone, White Christmas, A Christmas Story and more. Movies play on various dates until December 29.
Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree Show
The Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree Show plays five times per night from December 3 to January 6. The tree comes alive with a synchronized sound and light show.
The first ever Fezziwig Festival will kick off the festivities on Saturday December 4 and will run every Friday and Saturday through December 18. Each night will have food, live music, and fun activities for the entire family. All the fun will take place at Village Park in Hunter’s Creek (formerly known as the old Hunter’s Creek Famer’s Market.)
If you can’t go to the snow, Celebration will bring the snow to you! The annual Celebration Now Snowing event offers holiday goers a chance to ice skate, frolic in the snow, and photos with Santa. You can even take a ride on a horse drawn carriage. Nightly snowfall times are from 6pm – 9pm, on the hour. The entire family can enjoy this snowfall experience from November 27 – December 31.
Oh, What Fun!
The name alone makes me want to check this out! The Oh, What Fun Holiday Festival is being held in the Lake Nona Town Center. It runs from November 26 – January 2, 2022. Take a stroll through peppermint Square and enjoy treats, food, and live entertainment. The kiddos can take a picture with Santa and Mrs. Claus too.
Personalized Zoom call with the Clauses
Still a little skeptical about taking the kiddos to meet Santa and the Missus? If so, then schedule a Personalized Zoom Call with the Clauses. This will thrill your little ones! You will have the choice to do a Zoom call with just Santa, Santa and Mrs. Claus, or just Mrs. Claus. You can choose various times through the selected dates of November 21 – December 27. If you have more than one kiddo in your family, no problem – Santa and Mrs. Claus will speak to up to four children in the family. Once the call is done, you can get a digital recording of the call as a special keepsake.
Santa Workshop Experience at Icon Park
Santa’s back in his workshop and it is safer than ever for the kiddos to see the “Big Guy!” The Santa Workshop Experience at ICON Park boasts a new, improved, and healthy workshop where kiddos or the whole family can take pictures with Santa. The workshop runs from November 5 – December 24 and families can enjoy the local shops and restaurants, train rides, as well as discounted rides on the Wheel.
The holiday season is not complete without a visit to see The Nutcracker. The Orlando Ballet puts on this classic performance with selected dates from December 3 – 19, 2021 so join Clara and friends for a magical holiday night.
The Wishing Forest
Enter The Wishing Forest at Altamonte Mall. Make a wish inside a pinecone ornament, give it to the wishing tree(don’t worry, you get your pinecone ornament back to keep) and watch the light display overhead. Afterwards play some games in the Giving Grove – all proceeds benefit Ali’s Hope foundation – or take a picture with the big guy himself. You can visit the wishing forest daily until December 24.