There’s something magical about a city around the holidays. The crisp air, twinkling lights, buzz of the traffic – Philadelphia comes alive over the holiday season. There’s plenty of family-friendly activities for all ages – these are some of my favorite that are little-kid friendly. We’ve done most of these and make it a tradition to return every year.
It might be a crazy day, but you can pair up a few (or all!) of these to really get your city parking dollar’s worth. A few of my favorite nearby restaurants are: Reading Terminal Market, Bru, and El Vez. All of these are stroller friendly, but Macy’s will require the use of an elevator to get up to Dickens Village.
Comcast Holiday Spectacular
Nov 24 – Jan 1 | 1701 JFK Blvd
FREE daily light show – runs about 15 minutes. Sing along with the largest display of LED HD lights in the world. This is a quick stop, so would be great to pair with the Christmas Village or Macy’s! Read more here.
Nov 25 – Dec 24 | City Hall
My absolute favorite for the holiday season. It’s previously been held in LOVE park, but since the park is under construction, has moved across the street to City Hall. A German Christmas Market inspired setup – small pop-up shops of the city’s best vendors. Food, Gifts, Clothes, and more – you can’t go wrong! Plus, browse while sipping mulled hot cider or wine. *NEW* this year – a carousel, train rides, and garden maze for little kids! Read more here.
Macy’s Light Show + Dickens Village
Nov 25 – Dec 31 | 1300 Market St.
Great for little kids – the light show is FREE and about a half hour. Over 100,000 lights and music displayed at the center of the Center City Macy’s store. Coordinate to visit Dickens village (FREE) either before or after – you can even get a picture with Santa (picture packages starting at $18). The line is really long on the weekends, but well worth the wait. If you can get to it during the work week, even better. Read more here.
Franklin Square Holiday Festival
Nov 10 – Dec 31 | 200 6th St.
With tons of holiday activities all in one place, this is a GREAT option for little ones. Enjoy the light show, train rides around the square, music, food, and beer garden. There’s also an awesome playground with sections for toddler through big kid. You can easily spend an entire afternoon enjoying this one. Read more here.
Artic Ave + Holiday Second Saturday
Dec 10 | East Passyunk Crossing
East Passyunk Ave, home to a mix of over 25 shops and businesses, will host live ice sculpture demonstrations starting at 11am with complimentary refreshments. Look for deals and discounts at the shops, pictures with Santa, live music, and more! Last ice sculpture demonstration starts at 7:30pm. Added bonus – free meter street parking! Full details here.
Greater Philadelphia Area
Starts November 25 | 133 Church Road, Medford NJ
Light Show Hayrides, pictures with Santa, crafts and activities for the entire family. You can even pick up your freshly cut Christmas tree!
Linvilla Orchards Christmasland
Nov 19 – Dec 23 | 137 W Knowlton Rd, Media PA
Shop for Christmas decor and more in their garden center. Hayrides to cut down Christmas trees, and Santa on the weekends. More info here.
A Longwood Christmas at Longwood Gardens
Nov 24 – Jan 8 | 1001 Longwood Rd, Kennett Square PA
Stunning display of Christmas lights and foliage. Holiday music, fire pits, and more. Great for the whole family! Tickets $23 for adults, $12 for kids, and FREE for 4 and under. More info here.
Holiday Light Show at Shady Brook Farms
Nov 19 – Jan 8 | 931 Stony Hill Rd, Yardley PA
Drive through in your own car, or take a wagon ride to see over 3 million Christmas lights. Their farmers market is open and offering hot chocolate, pictures with Santa, and more. $25 per car, more info here.
A Very Furry Christmas
Nov 19 – Jan 1 | Sesame Place, Langhorne PA
We loved this last year! Perfect for little kids, Sesame Place decorates and even has some rides open. There’s a main street parade with Santa and all of the Sesame Street characters. $27, kids under 2 FREE. More info here.
Do you have any great holiday must-sees near Philly? Be sure to share below!