The holidays can be super busy with family, work events, get togethers, errands, and so much more. While the last thing you may want to do in your free time is add another event to your weekends, you may want to reconsider. There are a number of holiday events and activities happening around he DMV, and you don’t want to miss out!
The National Tree
Enjoy the sights of the city and spend the evening admiring the National Christmas Tree. A staple to the season, this family friendly outing is a MUST DO for all. If you are feeling festive now, consider heading down on Thursday, November 30th for the official lighting ceremony. Make it a special night, and walk over to the famous Old Ebbitt Grill for a delicious meal. For the adults looking for some old-DC charm, walk around the corner and grab a drink at the historic Round Robin Bar ($$) in the Willard InterContinental hotel. Looking for a place to enjoy an adult beverage while taking in breathtaking views of the city? Then head over to the P.O.V. Lounge on top of the W hotel ($$).
Free – $$
National Harbor has a great number of events going on throughout the entire holiday season. From free screenings of holiday movies on the plaza, gazing at the Christmas tree, taking a ride on The Capital Wheel, and more – there is bound to be something for everyone!
Winter Walk at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
Bundle up and take a walk through the spacious Meadowlark Botanical Gardens while admiring a winter wonderland of holiday lights. Now through January 7th from 5:30 – 10pm, you can take part in the holiday cheer. Ticket prices range from $8-13, and advance purchase is recommended.
Christmas in Middleburg
$ – $$
Want to celebrate the holiday season in true Virginia fashion? Then take a drive out to Middleburg, VA. While the town is cute year round, the weekend of December 1st will be their Christmas celebration. Parking passes are $20 and can be purchased in advance. Events of the weekend include a tree lighting, parade, Foxcroft pageant, and more. If Middleburg is a bit of a drive for you, make it a day and enjoy one of the local wineries, distillery, or restaurants while you are there.
Lucketts store + Vanish brewery
$ – $$
One of our favorite things to do around the holidays is to take a drive out to Lucketts, VA. Albeit small, this town is a wonderful escape from urban life. Visit the Lucketts store, stocked full of unique finds and priceless antique wares. Take a picture outside their design house studio or around the property – there are countless photo ops on site! Afterwards, warm up with some food and beer at local brewery Vanish (pups and kids are welcome!).
ICE! at the Gaylord National
Growing to be a holiday tradition for many in the area, the Gaylord at National Harbor is hosting their annual ICE! event from November 18th – January 1st. This year’s theme is “Ruldolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”. If you have never been before, this is a MUST DO! Not only are there amazing ice sculptures that will delight all ages, but also ice slides, holiday store, snacks, and more. Make it an outing, by shopping at the nearby Tanger Outlet mall, other shops at National Harbor, admiring the indoor village at The Gaylord, and eating at one of the many restaurants. While regular admission is $24 for kids and $32 for adults, Groupon is currently running a special on tickets.
Winter Wonderland at Burke Lake Park
Interested in something for the little ones? Take a ride on the holiday train at Burke Lake Park. Enjoy the park, carousel, Snowmen’s Wagon Ride, Gingerbread Man’s golf, and roast s’mores by the fire. The holiday celebration will be held on the weekends of December 2nd and 10th. Winter Wonderland admission is $20 on the day of the event.
Santa Paws at Fair Oaks Mall
Want to capture a priceless moment for your family INCLUDING your fur babies? Head over to Fair Oaks Mall and take your picture with Santa Paws! Dates, times, and prices vary. This event has been part of our family tradition for the past few years, and I highly recommend getting in line early.
Lights at Bull Run
If the cold temps have you wanting to stay in, try driving through the Bull Run Festival of Lights. Ticket prices ($25) are for cars, so invite your friends and spread your holiday cheer. Drive through the 2.5 miles of holiday lights, and finish with a visit to the Holiday Village and Carnival.
These are just a few of the many holiday happenings around the DMV this season. There are so many great choices, that you really can’t go wrong. No matter which way you choose to celebrate, I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating with your family and friends!