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9 great places to see Christmas lights around Atlanta, mapped

These colorful displays will brighten the entire holiday season

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The holiday season is in full swing, and there’s no better way to celebrate than taking in an amazing display of holiday lights. Thankfully, there’s no shortage of twinkling attractions in and around Atlanta.

You’ll find plenty of lights in town to satisfy your desire for all things sparkling, but don’t be afraid to journey beyond the Perimeter, too. Some displays are free. Others require admission. But all are sure to dazzle and delight.

So gather up the family or your jolly friends, and set out across Atlanta to stroll or drive through the night.

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Garden Lights Holiday Nights

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Lighting up the sky through January 11 from 5 to 11 p.m. each evening, this popular Atlanta Botanical Garden event returns for its ninth year.

As part of this year’s offering, experience new music and motion for the “Nature’s Wonders” display, which includes a curtain of vertical lights choreographed to music and sound effects. Also check out the plant giants of “Imaginary Worlds: Alice’s Wonderland,” which now sport a holiday glow.

Tickets vary by age, date, and time; see website for full schedule and pricing. 

Light the Station

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Take a stroll through the streets of Atlantic Station, where you’ll enjoy the glow and twinkle of more than 250,000 dazzling lights. Those walking along Market and Tower streets can enjoy the “snow” during the nightly Snow Shows. These take place every Sunday through Thursday at 7 p.m.; on Fridays and Saturdays, the snow falls at 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m., and 9 p.m.

PRISM: Winter Lights

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Free and open to the public, PRISM: Winter Lights takes over Woodruff Park from December through February. The three-month installation will feature light-based sculptures by 10 artists from around the country. The event kicks off with an opening event on Saturday, December 7, at 5 p.m. featuring music, activities, and food and drink vendors.

Lights of Life

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Every Sunday through Thursday from dark to 9 p.m. on weekdays and until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays through December 31, drive through the campus of Life University in Marietta to experience the Lights of Life. Since 1989, this light show has grown to encompass more than 1 million LED lights in displays set up along the grounds. Other activities include visits with Santa, train rides, pony rides, a petting zoo, and concessions.

Admission for cars/trucks is $5 for the following dates: December 2 to 5 and December 9 to 12. Admission for cars/trucks is $10 for the following dates: November 28 to December 1, December 13 to 31, and all Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Additional fees are required for onsite activities and concessions. 

Fantasy in Lights

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A time-honored tradition, Fantasy in Lights returns to Callaway Gardens with thousands of lights decorating the drive through the gorgeous grounds. See beloved holiday characters, beautiful flowers brought to light, swans swimming on the lake, and more.

Tickets include day admission to the gardens, one trip through the lights, and access to the Christmas Village. Ticket prices vary based on date and age; see website for full details.

Magical Nights of Lights

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A holiday tradition since 1993, Magical Nights of Lights at Lanier Islands continues to be a favorite with both kids and adults. During the seven-mile journey through the resort, visitors will see hundreds of displays of lights representing their holiday favorites.

Through December 19, admission is $45 at the gate for vehicles of up to 10 passengers; online rates are $42. Admission from December 20 through December 30 is $55 at the gate and $52 online.

Holiday Lights at Veterans Park

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Approximately 45 minutes north of Atlanta, the Veterans Park in Canton turns into a drive-thru light show featuring more than 1 million sparkling lights. The two-mile trek takes visitors past animated Christmas displays, favorite holiday characters, through two tunnels, and, of course, a patriotic display.

Open through December 31, admission is $20 per vehicle; a portion of the proceeds will be donated to five local charities.

Christmas light display with lit American flag in center and nutcracker soldiers on each side. Karon Warren

Holiday Lights at Barnsley Resort

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From December 1 to January 1, twinkling holiday lights reign supreme at Barnsley Resort. With holiday garden admission, visitors can peruse the gardens, resort village, and the historic Manor House Ruins. On December 7, 14, and 21, visitors can participate in various holiday-themed workshops and crafting sessions for additional fees ranging from $15 to $65. Santa also will make an appearance on December 14 and 21.

Holiday garden admission is $20 for adults, $10 for children ages 5 to 12, and free for children younger than 5 as well as all overnight resort guests.

Main Street Christmas Light Extravaganza

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Through January 3, head south to Macon, where you’ll find hundreds of thousands of lights draped throughout four blocks in the city’s downtown. But this is no ordinary stroll among holiday lights... These lights move in sync with music arranged and composed by the Macon Pops. Free and open to the public, the light and music show takes place nightly from 6 to 10 p.m.

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Garden Lights Holiday Nights

Lighting up the sky through January 11 from 5 to 11 p.m. each evening, this popular Atlanta Botanical Garden event returns for its ninth year.

As part of this year’s offering, experience new music and motion for the “Nature’s Wonders” display, which includes a curtain of vertical lights choreographed to music and sound effects. Also check out the plant giants of “Imaginary Worlds: Alice’s Wonderland,” which now sport a holiday glow.

Tickets vary by age, date, and time; see website for full schedule and pricing. 

Light the Station

Take a stroll through the streets of Atlantic Station, where you’ll enjoy the glow and twinkle of more than 250,000 dazzling lights. Those walking along Market and Tower streets can enjoy the “snow” during the nightly Snow Shows. These take place every Sunday through Thursday at 7 p.m.; on Fridays and Saturdays, the snow falls at 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m., and 9 p.m.

PRISM: Winter Lights

Free and open to the public, PRISM: Winter Lights takes over Woodruff Park from December through February. The three-month installation will feature light-based sculptures by 10 artists from around the country. The event kicks off with an opening event on Saturday, December 7, at 5 p.m. featuring music, activities, and food and drink vendors.

Lights of Life

Every Sunday through Thursday from dark to 9 p.m. on weekdays and until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays through December 31, drive through the campus of Life University in Marietta to experience the Lights of Life. Since 1989, this light show has grown to encompass more than 1 million LED lights in displays set up along the grounds. Other activities include visits with Santa, train rides, pony rides, a petting zoo, and concessions.

Admission for cars/trucks is $5 for the following dates: December 2 to 5 and December 9 to 12. Admission for cars/trucks is $10 for the following dates: November 28 to December 1, December 13 to 31, and all Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Additional fees are required for onsite activities and concessions. 

Fantasy in Lights

A time-honored tradition, Fantasy in Lights returns to Callaway Gardens with thousands of lights decorating the drive through the gorgeous grounds. See beloved holiday characters, beautiful flowers brought to light, swans swimming on the lake, and more.

Tickets include day admission to the gardens, one trip through the lights, and access to the Christmas Village. Ticket prices vary based on date and age; see website for full details.

Magical Nights of Lights

A holiday tradition since 1993, Magical Nights of Lights at Lanier Islands continues to be a favorite with both kids and adults. During the seven-mile journey through the resort, visitors will see hundreds of displays of lights representing their holiday favorites.

Through December 19, admission is $45 at the gate for vehicles of up to 10 passengers; online rates are $42. Admission from December 20 through December 30 is $55 at the gate and $52 online.

Holiday Lights at Veterans Park

Christmas light display with lit American flag in center and nutcracker soldiers on each side. Karon Warren

Approximately 45 minutes north of Atlanta, the Veterans Park in Canton turns into a drive-thru light show featuring more than 1 million sparkling lights. The two-mile trek takes visitors past animated Christmas displays, favorite holiday characters, through two tunnels, and, of course, a patriotic display.

Open through December 31, admission is $20 per vehicle; a portion of the proceeds will be donated to five local charities.

Christmas light display with lit American flag in center and nutcracker soldiers on each side. Karon Warren

Holiday Lights at Barnsley Resort

From December 1 to January 1, twinkling holiday lights reign supreme at Barnsley Resort. With holiday garden admission, visitors can peruse the gardens, resort village, and the historic Manor House Ruins. On December 7, 14, and 21, visitors can participate in various holiday-themed workshops and crafting sessions for additional fees ranging from $15 to $65. Santa also will make an appearance on December 14 and 21.

Holiday garden admission is $20 for adults, $10 for children ages 5 to 12, and free for children younger than 5 as well as all overnight resort guests.

Main Street Christmas Light Extravaganza

Through January 3, head south to Macon, where you’ll find hundreds of thousands of lights draped throughout four blocks in the city’s downtown. But this is no ordinary stroll among holiday lights... These lights move in sync with music arranged and composed by the Macon Pops. Free and open to the public, the light and music show takes place nightly from 6 to 10 p.m.