Best time to go to Kentucky

Christmas Lights 2019-2020

Admire light displays at a bourbon distillery and in 1880s settlement

Christmas Lights in Kentucky 2020 - Best Time
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Anthony | Christmas in Lexington

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If you are looking forward to getting into a Christmas spirit, Kentucky will not disappoint you. Ashland, Louisville, Owensboro and Lexington offer amazing light displays and lots of holiday activities. Meet Santa Claus in a mega cavern, in a horse park or a historical village. There are many unusual stops on a Kentucky Christmas activities map.

Lights Under Louisville at the Louisville Mega Cavern (November 15, 2019–January 4, 2020)

Lights Under Louisville is a unique Christmas experience that is no like any other light display. Louisville Mega Cavern transforms into a fairytale land with an impressive holiday light spectacular. A festive ride through part of 17-mi (27-km) of underground passageways takes about 30 minutes. Visitors will see over 850 characters lit up with over 3,000,000 lights. The guests drive their own vehicles through the Louisville Mega Cavern during the Christmas season. Another option is to take Christmas Express, a 30-min day time drive-through in an open-top trailer. It can be followed by breakfast with Santa in Winter Wonderland. This is a one-of-a-kind holiday attraction that is worth trying.

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Louisville Mega Cavern Lights 2020
Louisville Mega Cavern Lights
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Winter Wonderland of Lights Festival in Central Park, Ashland (November 18, 2019–January 5, 2020)

Since 1988 the Ashland's Winter Wonderland of Lights has been one of the most impressive light displays in the state. Pay a visit to downtown Ashland’s Central Park during the holiday season and enjoy the light spectacular. A 52-acre (21-hectare) park is illuminated with over 60 divine holiday displays that consist of over 800,000 lights. Kids would love a ride on Winter Wonderland Express train and a visit to Ashland’s oldest home which is located in Central Park to meet the old St.Nick himself!

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Southern Lights Holiday Festival at the Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington (November 29–December 31, 2019)

The annual Southern Lights Holiday Festival at Lexington's Kentucky Horse Park was the first light display in the area over 25 years ago. It now attracts about 120,000 visitors every year and is listed among Top 20 Events in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society. Wear some warm clothes and participate in Southern Lights Stroll or a competitive 5K race. Seeing the magnificent surroundings of the Kentucky Horse Park either on foot or from your car window is a spectacular Christmas experience. Additional attractions include visits with Santa, Mini Train Rides, Model Train Exhibit, Life Size Snow Globe, pony and camel rides, and a petting zoo. There will also be a food drive for local animal shelters and needy families.

Patti's Festival of Lights at Patti's 1880 Settlement, Grand Rivers (November 1, 2019–January 15, 2020)

Experience an old-fashioned small-town Christmas and Patti’s Festival of Lights in Grand Rivers, a picturesque area between Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. Patti’s 1880’s Settlement and the Grand Rivers transforms into a wonderland each November. Thousands of enchanting lights are visible daily after dusk through mid-January. Overall, the festival grounds are illuminated with over 750,000 lights. Patti’s Settlement and downtown also offer Musical Christmas production and variety shows at the Badgett Playhouse, unique crafts and gifts, and cozy lodging.

Patti's Festival of Lights 2020
Patti's Festival of Lights
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Patti's Festival of Lights 2020
Patti's Festival of Lights
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Patti's Festival of Lights 2020
Patti's Festival of Lights
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Christmas at Panther Creek, Owensboro (November 29, 2019–January 2, 2020)

Panther Creek Park Christmas festival is a cherished local tradition for families in Owensboro, a city in Western Kentucky on the bank of Ohio River. The park located on Wayne Bridge Road hosts an amazing drive-through light display. More than 500,000 lights illuminate a beautiful trail that you can explore on your car. Wagon rides are also available if weather permits. Proceeds from Christmas at Panther Creek benefit many local non-profits throughout the year.

Christmas In The Park at Noble Park, Paducah (November 27–December 31, 2019)

Christmas in the Park is the premier holiday attraction in Paducah and the whole region. Paducah Power System lights up the spectacular illumination in Noble Park every holiday season starting with a lighting ceremony in mid-November. A walk under the lights will be available nightly through New Year's Eve. There are also horsedrawn carriage tours available by reservation. Don't forget to pay a visit with Santa House at Noble Park and donate nonperishable food for area charities.

Christmas Lights in Kentucky - Best Season 2020
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Best time for Christmas Lights in Kentucky 2020
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Lighting Of The Trace at Buffalo Trace Distillery, Frankfort (December 5, 2019)

There is no better way to celebrate the holiday season in Frankfort than enjoy the colorful, festive displays at the Buffalo Trace Distillery. The magical display consists of more than 145,000 lights across the Distillery. In addition to fantastic decorations, it is featuring the Kentucky State University Choir and Santa himself. Go on a Candlelight Tour, enjoy Carols and Holiday Stories, and participate in other fun activities at Lighting of the Trace. Take a picture with Santa in the Clubhouse, try cookies along with hot chocolate to keep yourself warm. Buffalo Trace Distillery is an American family-owned company which rich tradition dates back to 1773. It produces bourbon and vodka on site.

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Bardstown Road Aglow, Louisville (December 7, 2019)

Bardstown Road Aglow is a signature Louisville Christmas event put on by the Highlands Commerce Guild. It is kicked off by lighting the Christmas Tree at Bardstown and Grinstead, but in addition to that, it features numerous shopping specials. Stores attract visitors offering refreshments, snacks, live music and a trolley. The Park Community Polar Palooza is a major highlight of Bardstown Road Aglow. It includes kids entertainment, letters to Santa, photos with funny characters and holiday music.

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