From the Garden of Lights at Brookside Gardens to the Winter Lights in Gaithersburg, we’ve rounded up Montgomery County’s best holiday light displays and experiences you won’t want to miss this season.
Stroll through more than one million dazzling colorful lights shaped into hand-crafted flowers, animals, snowflakes, and other natural elements at the Garden of Lights. Wander this winter wonderland and enjoy whimsical scenes, watch model trains wind through seasonal landscapes in the Conservatory, and listen to musical performances in the Visitors Center.
The Garden of Lights is open every night through December 31, 2023 (except December 24 & 25) at Brookside Gardens. The cost is $10 per person and is only available for purchase in advance.
Winter City Lights is an immersive holiday lights experience where guests can walk through a 1.5-mile trail full of twinkling lights and explore over 200,000 square feet of displays covering 18 acres. There are high-thrilling penguin snow tubing rides, axe-throwing, and fire pits with s’mores making.
Tickets can be purchased at the gate or online. Note: ticket prices might increase closer to Christmas and day of ticket purchases.
Drive through the City of Gaithersburg Winter Lights Festival featuring 3.5 miles of enchanted woodland with more than 450 illuminated displays and spectacularly lit trees that brighten the evening sky. Celebrating its 25th spectacular season, the display in Seneca Creek State Park features seasonal scenes like Winter Woods, Teddy Bear Land, Toyland, Victorian Village, and the North Pole.
The City of Gaithersburg Winter Lights Festival is open every night from November 24 through December 31 (except December 25) at Seneca Creek State Park. Tickets must be purchased in advance and won’t be available at the gate. The price is $15 per car/van (Monday-Thursday) and $25 per car/van (Friday-Sunday), or $30 for a 15+ passenger van.
Lakefront at rio
There are wonderful moments of joy sprinkled throughout rio in Gaithersburg. Stroll along the lakefront for beautiful light displays, Instagramable selfie spots, warm firepits, and a bright blue tree floating on the water! After working up an appetite walking through this winter wonderland, stop by one of the many restaurants to dine in for a delicious meal or take it to go.
For more holiday inspiration, head to the MoCo Holiday Experience Hub.