From bright Christmas lights to festive celebrations, Missouri offers a memorable Christmastime experience for visitors of all ages. Look forward to cruising down Candy Cane Lane in St. Louis, or taking a walk through Ozark Mountain Lights and Village in Branson to enjoy a magical atmosphere. Whether you prefer a walking tour of local Christmas decorations or a scenic drive through a festive neighborhood, be sure to bring hot cocoa and mittens from your Missouri vacation rental to stay warm during the frosty holiday season. For a special holiday adventure, check out the Christmas lights in these cities and towns in Missouri.

Wild Lights at St. Louis Zoo
Source: Flickr/Philip Leara

1. An Old-Time Christmas in Branson

When visiting Branson, step out of your cozy vacation rental and gaze at the vibrant glow of more than 6.5 million mesmerizing lights on trees and buildings. With 1,000 decorated Christmas trees, this magnificent attraction is sure to fill your heart with Christmas spirit. Christmas in Midtown features an additional 1.5 million lights, making this stunning event bigger and brighter than ever. After soaking up the brightly lit holiday ambiance, sit down to watch Broadway-style productions for an entertaining retelling of classic holiday tales. Behold an astonishing five-story Christmas tree complemented by visually charming special effects to boost your Christmas cheer. Look on in amazement as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and other lovable Christmas characters march in the Holly Jolly Christmas Light Parade.

Once you work up an appetite, dine on a home-style Christmas feast at Reunion Hall, or grab festive walk-away treats such as cappuccino and hot apple dumplings. Shop for a memorable souvenir at one of two dozen shops, such as Jingle Bell Junction, located in the Frisco Barn.

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2. Garden Glow in St. Louis

Celebrate the Christmas season with more than 1 million lights decorating the Missouri Botanical Garden landscape and historical structures. Walk through the marvelous decorations and droves of glimmering trees to witness the magic of the holiday season. Visit the Tower Grove House to catch a glimpse of the Victorian-style Christmas decorations highlighting the building. With live holiday music, participate in the enveloping Christmas spirit by singing along with your favorite holiday tunes. Create special memories with photo opportunities inside an inflatable snowglobe or fun holiday frame. To ensure you remember Garden Glow, use the enchanting light display as a gorgeous backdrop for other special photos.

Sip hot chocolate and eat s’mores while you walk around the Botanical Gardens, or you can visit Sassafras for a traditional Christmas feast. Pick up some stocking stuffers for family and friends at Butterfly House Gift Shop or Little Shop Around the Corner.

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3. Wild Lights at St. Louis

Wild Lights at the Saint Louis Zoo may be named after the spectacular decorative lights, but this attraction has more to offer than just whimsical displays. The sparkling glow of lights decorate swans at Swan Lake, while sparkling white lights create the icing on the Gingerbread Village. To enjoy traditional holiday colors check out Jungle Bell Rock, or visit Snowfall Alley for a truly winter experience. Other bold light displays include Starry Safari, South Entrance Safari, and Winter Wildland.

For a bit of fun, excite your taste buds by roasting tasty treats over open fire pits. Sing along with carolers or interact with costumed characters to celebrate your merry mood. Aside from live entertainment, you can enjoy the fireside storytellers. While you warm up around the fire, you can listen to storytellers’ wintry tales about lovable penguins and reindeer. Take a trip to the Woodland Workshop to create festive children’s crafts, or snap fun photos for holiday memories. The Conservation Carousel gives you a fun ride, while the 4D Theater features an amazing viewing of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” in 4D.

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4. Santa’s Holiday Kingdom in Eureka

Bring in the Christmas season by visiting Santa Claus in his wonderful workshop. Santa’s Holiday Kingdom is magnificently decorated, with millions of dazzling lights that illuminate the night sky, visible miles before you reach the location. With twinkly trees, glistening fountains, and a shimmering 300-foot waterfall, this astonishing Christmas attraction puts a smile on your face and holiday cheer in your heart. The Tunnel of Dancing Lights offers stunning illuminated animation to take your breath away, while dolphins playfully splash in a striking river of lights. Walk through Toy Land to see gigantic 3-D toys and Santa’s sleigh highlighted by brilliant special effects. Visit a life-sized gingerbread house in the Candy Cane Village to find out what satisfies an elf’s sweet tooth. To give your feet a break after a long walk through the park, hop aboard the Santa Express Train for a beautiful view and a delightful ride.

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5. Winter Wonderland at Tilles Park in St. Louis

Although driving through the impressive Winter Wonderland at Tilles Park works well for some visitors, the best way to enjoy this gorgeous light show is by horse-drawn carriage. Every holiday season, thousands of people enjoy the breathtaking views of shimmering trees and glowing bushes. With more than 1 million twinkling lights decorating the park, you’ll feel holiday cheer drifting through the air. Spot amusing holiday scenes around the park including holiday bells, a beautiful wreath, a bubble stream, and a toy factory. Enjoy the dazzling tunnel of lights before you visit Santa and his reindeer to make your Christmas wish. Recognized as one of the top Christmas light displays in St. Louis County, the Winter Wonderland delivers a spectacular holiday light show.

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