Holiday Activities + Christmas Lights in Tampa, Clearwater, and St. Pete

Christmas Lights Tampa Florida

Are you looking for holiday activities and Christmas Lights in the Tampa Bay Area? Celebrating Christmas in Tampa? We can help you plan a day trip to Tampa or St. Petersburg to see a Christmas light display, visit a Christmas maze, or enjoy a holiday lights show.

Some of these activities in Tampa are FREE – including the outdoor Christmas lights at the Tampa Riverwalk, Curtis Hixon Park, and the Waterfront in St. Pete. Others have a reasonable admission charge, and we’ve also included special activities for a Christmas splurge.

Many attraction closures and event postponements have been announced beginning September 27 due to Hurricane Ian. We are editing our calendar and articles if we receive notice of event changes, but please be sure to check directly with organizers to confirm any events or activities from September 27 - October 2. A link is provided at the bottom of every event on our calendar and in all articles.

We’ve also got details on Christmas Events in Orlando, and plenty of information on Christmas in Lakeland, Florida.

Please keep in mind most of these activities are outdoors and weather dependent. Links are provided so you can check directly with event organizers for any last minute changes or closures.

Don’t miss our Ultimate Guide to Christmas Events + Holiday Activities for a full list of things to do this holiday season in Lakeland and Polk County including Christmas Light Displays, Santa Photos, Christmas Tree Lots, Christmas Parades, Holidays Concerts, Live Performances, Holiday Markets, Ice Skating, Toy Donation Needs, and more.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means we will receive a small commission if you make a purchase by clicking through our links. Thank you for supporting Lakeland Mom!

Christmas Lights in Tampa Florida

Glorious Night at First Baptist Church of Plant City

Join First Baptist Church of Plant City this Christmas season for something new and unique. Glorious Night is a 30-minute drive-in light show featuring Christmas songs old and new, a story of hope, and thousands of programmed Christmas lights. Come and experience Glorious Night. {Show restarts every 40 minutes from 6-10pm but it is designed so that no matter when you arrive you can enjoy the show}. This show was called The Light of Christmas at First Baptist Plant City in 2020.

  • Friday, November 6, 2021 – Sunday, January 2, 2022 | Nightly, 6 PM – 10 PM
  • FREE
  • First Baptist Church of Plant City – 3309 James L Redman Pkwy, Plant City, FL 33566
  • Website (see a short preview from 2020 on Facebook)

The Christmas Trail in Plant City

The Christmas Trail is an outdoor Christmas event located in Plant City, Florida. Featuring over a 1/4 mile Christmas Light walking trail filled with over 100,000 Christmas lights. Displays and activities include Jack Frost Ice Show with live snow, Pictures with Santa, Walk to Bethlehem – Nativity Light Maze, Christmas Tree Light Show, Dancing Christmas Trees, & more. Wheelchairs and strollers are allowed, proceed with caution in some areas because this is an outdoor event. 

  • The Christmas Trail will not be open in 2021.
  • $15 per vehicle up to 8 people. ($25 for passenger van up to 15 ppl, and $50 for buses) Advance tickets required.
  • 2837 South Frontage Road Plant City, FL 33566 (MAP IT)
  • Christmas Trail Website or Facebook page

Christmas Lane at the Florida Strawberry Festival Grounds in Plant City 

Christmas Lane is an interactive walk through Christmas event held at the fairgrounds in Plant City, FL. Various Christmas themed displays, live entertainment, food, and rides (additional cost for food & rides). Plus, you can meet and take pictures with Santa & Mrs. Claus, Frosty the Snowman, and Rudolph!

  • 2021 Hours – Open select nights from November 26 – December 24, 2021 (Nov 26-28, Dec 2-5, 9-12, and 16-24) from 6-10pm
  • Florida Strawberry Festival grounds – 2508 W Oak Ave, Plant City, FL 33563
  • Christmas Lane Website or Facebook Page

Nights of Shimmering Lights in Dover 

Sunkissed Acres Farm in Dover presents Shimmering Lights – a winter event featuring a ¼-mile outdoor walking trail through the shimmering lights dancing to music. Walk at your own pace and stop as often as you like. Santa will be on hand for pictures and wishes. Get in the holiday mood with seasonal music and themed areas. Shimmering Lights is a one-way wide walking trail, you can repeat the 1/4 mile trail as many times as you would like. Free parking. Restrooms on site. Light concessions include fresh hot mini donuts and hot cocoa.

  • Open select nights from Friday, November 26 – Sunday, December 26, 2021
  • 6:30-9:30 pm on Sundays and Select Weeknights, 6:30-10:30 on Fridays & Saturdays (lines are shorter after 8:30pm)
  • $7 per person, ages 3 and under are free. Tickets can be purchased in advanced on the website or or at the gate. 
  • Sun Kissed Acres Farm – 2302 N. Dover Road, Dover, FL 33527
  • WebsiteFacebook

Festival of Lights + Santa’s Village at the Hillsborough Fairgrounds

The Hillsborough County Fairgrounds is hosting an ALL-NEW Holiday Light Spectacular this year that features nearly two-miles of drive-thru of continuous light features followed by a festive walking visit to Santa’s Village.

Designed to appeal to all ages and backgrounds, the elaborate light displays themed to Florida and traditional winter holidays representing Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and more. From hilarious elves wrestling alligators to a giant gingerbread house with candy and cakes. Santa’s Village includes Santa’s barnyard, holiday movies, visits with Santa and plenty of photo spots. (This is a new event produced by a new lighting design company, it is not the same event coordinator as in previous years in this location).

  • November 25 – December 26, 2021 from 6pm-10pm
  • $25 Per Carload (up to 8 persons) – advance tickets highly recommended to skip the line. Admission includes light displays and entrance to Santa’s Village, other activities may cost extra.
  • 215 Sydney Washer Road Dover, FL 33527 (On Hwy 60)
  • WebsiteFacebook

Holiday Spectacular on the Tampa Riverwalk

Friends of the Riverwalk invites you to enjoy a Holiday Spectacular light display in Tampa. Displays include a 35′ tall LED lighted Christmas tree that floats in the harbor, several other lighted displays floating on barges in the Hillsborough River, and the lighted garland and red bows on the Riverwalk light poles. Enjoy the lights at your leisure. The 2.6 miles of the Tampa Riverwalk runs from Armature Works to Curtis Hixon Park to Sparkman Wharf.

The Riverwalk Holiday Hunt will also be available Dec 17 – Jan 2. Check the website for details on this mobile based scavenger hunt.

  • FREE
  • November 20, 2021 through January 2, 2022
  • Website

Tampa Boat Parade – Holiday Lighted Boat Parade

Tampa’s largest lighted boat parade for Christmas runs along the Tampa Riverwalk on the Hillsborough River in Downtown Tampa. The parade begins in the Convention Center basin, travels to the Heights, and ends at Sparkman Wharf.

  • Saturday, December 18, 2021 at 6pm
  • Along the Riverwalk in Tampa
  • WebsiteFacebook

Winter Village at Curtis Hixon Park in Downtown Tampa

Winter Village Tampa is back in 2021 with outdoor ice skating, vendors, Christmas lights, and more. Advance reservations for ice skating are highly recommended. Stroll through Curtis Hixon Park and enjoy a beautiful view of the Hillsborough River and Tampa’s Christmas Lights. TIP – walk north or south and check out the decorations along the Tampa Riverwalk and on the river.

A free choo choo train ride is also available for the kids. Climb aboard for a 10-minute Christmas train ride through the park to enjoy the lights and sounds of Winter Village.

  • FREE to explore, ice skating is $15/person
  • November 19, 2021 – January 2, 2022 – check website for hours and special events
  • Curtis Hixon Park in Downtown Tampa
  • Website

River of Lights Holiday Boat Cruise – Pirate Water Taxi in Tampa

Hop on a water taxi tour of Tampa Christmas lights and decorations along the river including Holiday Island. As you cruise, you will get up-close views of Downtown Tampa’s spectacular seasonal decorations and holiday lights. This family-friendly event will include a visit by a jolly pirate elf, Christmas song sing-a-longs, and a chance to see snow flurries in Florida! Every child will have an opportunity to write a letter to Santa and drop it off in Tampa’s only floating mailbox. 

  • Adults $25, Children $20
  • Select nights in November and December
  • Boarding at the Tampa Convention Center
  • Website

Wonderland of Lights and Santa’s Village at the Hillsborough County Fairgrounds in Brandon

Tampa Christmas Events

Christmas In The Wild at ZooTampa at Lowry Park

It’s the most wonderful time of the year at ZooTampa with the return of Christmas in the Wild, featuring one of Tampa Bay’s largest light displays, delectable holiday treats, amazing wildlife and new festive adventures. This year is BIGGER, better, and brighter than ever, with six new illuminated zones of lights, festive entertainment that the whole family will enjoy.

Christmas in the Wild is a limited capacity event. Advanced purchase tickets and timed reservations are strongly encouraged and the only way to guarantee admission.

  • November 26 – December 30, 2021 – Select Nights from 4-10pm (video below is from a previous year with old dates)
  • Tickets are $29.95/person or included with annual pass (reservation required)
  • ZooTampa at Lowry Park – 1101 W Sligh Ave, Tampa, FL 33604
  • ZooTampa Website

Christmas Town at Busch Gardens

Unwrap a beautiful family tradition at Christmas Town, where Busch Gardens Tampa transforms into a holiday wonderland of Christmastime entertainment and attractions, holiday shopping, visits with Santa, festive treats and more than a million twinkling lights.

Saturdays with Santa at the Florida Aquarium

Santa is coming! Guests of all ages can share Holiday wishes and take pictures with Santa Claus during this special holiday adventure. This festive, unique photo opportunity will provide a wonderful Holiday keepsake as you capture Santa inside his “snow globe”. Bring your family and friends to celebrate the Holidays at The Florida Aquarium. Santa will be at the Aquarium for photos* starting the Friday after Thanksgiving. (*Professional pictures will be available for purchase.)

  • Every Saturday and Sunday from November 27 – December 19 from 11am – 3pm
  • Included in Aquarium admission
  • The Florida Aquarium – 701 Channelside Dr, Tampa, FL 33602
  • Website

Snow Days at the Florida Aquarium

Snow is in the forecast at The Florida Aquarium! Join in on all the frosty festivities of Snow Days free with membership or general admission. From an epic battle where you’ll throw snowballs at the pollution monsters plaguing our oceans to a Winter Wonderland dance party and many more gloved hands-on interactive experiences, it’s fun for the whole family!

  • December 26, 2021 – January 2, 2022
  • Included in Aquarium admission
  • The Florida Aquarium – 701 Channelside Dr, Tampa, FL 33602
  • Website

Christmas Lights in St. Pete + Clearwater

The Lights of Lake Park Estates in Seminole

Drive through over 3 miles of Christmas Lights in the neighborhoods of Lake Park Estates, Wieker, Lakeside Estates, and Lake Seminole Village (between Clearwater and St. Pete). Follow the arrows through the neighborhood. Donations are accepted along the route – 100% of the donations are provided to Suncoast Hospice to support their community activities. (The event has raised over $907,000 since its inception in 1993 – wow!!)

  • FREE – Donations encouraged
  • December 1 – 31, 2021 – 6:00 – 9:30pm
  • 102nd Ave & 97th St, Seminole FL 33777
  • Website

Largo Central Park Holiday Lights & Rides

Stroll through Largo Central Park and escape into a show stopping light display, featuring over two million twinkling LED lights. This is a walking display, not a drive through. Rides and food also available. Ride the ferris wheel to see the 70 acre park from up high. The rides and light display are open nightly from 6-11pm.

  • FREE to park and walk through the light displays. Rides are $5 each.
  • November 25, 2021 – January 1, 2022 nightly from 6pm – 11pm
  • 101 Central Park Dr, Largo, FL 33771
  • Website

Waterfront Lights in St. Pete

Take a stroll along the waterfront to see thousands of holiday lights and decorations in North Straub ParkSouth Straub ParkPioneer ParkVinoy Park, and the St. Pete Pier. Don’t miss the giant greeting card display along Bayshore Dr. at Vinoy Park made by local teens and participants from St. Petersburg’s recreation centers.

Oakdale Christmas House in St. Petersburg

If you’re in the area, you’ve got to check out this amazing Christmas light display in St. Petersburg, Florida. Oakdale Christmas House in St. Pete has been putting up a display for over 40 years. They’ve been HGTV’s #1 display and NBC’s Today Show Top 3. This mega Christmas display is FREE for the public to enjoy.

  • FREE
  • Friday November 26, 2021 to January 3, 2022
  • 2719 Oakdale Street South, St. Petersburg, FL 33705
  • Website 

Enchant Christmas St. Pete

Enchanted Christmas in St. Petersburg is a Christmas Light maze in Tampa Bay returning in 2021! This event fills Tropicana Field with the lights and sights of Christmas. This Tampa Enchanted Christmas event includes a themed maze where you can search and help find the missing toys, vendors selling food and drinks, music and dancing, an ice skating trail, kids play area, and Santa pictures.

  • Admission starts at $25/person for ages 3+
  • Tropicana Field – 1 Tropicana Dr., St. Petersburg, FL 33705
  • Website

Map – Christmas Lights in Tampa

Christmas Events + Holiday Activities

Check out our Ultimate Guide to Christmas Events + Holiday Activities to find more things to do including Neighborhood Christmas Light Displays, FREE Christmas Events, Santa Photos, Christmas Parades, and more.