Holiday Events in Salt Lake

Travel and See Holiday Events

October has officially come and gone. Now the holiday season continues with Thanksgiving and Christmas. We at Salt Lake Express know our travelers are itching to get home for the holidays. While we want to get you home quickly and safely, it’d be a shame if you missed out on some of the wonderful opportunities this season has to offer. Which is why we’re breaking down the best holiday events in Salt lake this season. If you are planning on visiting Salt Lake, check out some of these great events and performances. Consider this our gift to you.

For more info on our routes and stops, check out Salt Lake Express

Dickens Christmas Festival – Nov 18 – 20

Charles Dickens practically made Christmas the powerhouse holiday it is. The popularity of Christmas celebrations and traditions was greatly influenced by his book A Christmas Carol. This November, you have the chance to celebrate Christmas the way they did in Dickens’ day. The festival includes traditional performances, old English shops, entertainment, music and much more. Kids visiting the festival can meet a surprise visitor from the north. Travel with Salt Lake Express and get into the holiday spirit the old fashioned way.

Festival of Trees – Nov 22 – Dec 4

The Festival of Trees is an annual charity event held by Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake. At the Festival, local artists and designers have 24 hours to decorate and present their original Christmas tree artwork side by side. The presentation is like walking through a forest of Christmas trees. And the proceeds go to treatment and research at Primary Children’s Hospital. If you are looking for a way to get involved with a great cause, travel to the Mountain America Expo Center in Salt Lake and stop by the Festival of Trees.

A Christmas with David Archuleta – Nov 26

Were you ever a fan of American Idol? Over a decade ago David Archuleta competed on Idol and became a Utah celebrity. Archuleta is an incredibly talented singer and performer, and this concert marks his first Utah performance since the pandemic. The concert is a great opportunity to hear a ballad of your favorite Christmas song or carol. He’ll be performing at the Orpheum Theatre the day after Thanksgiving 2021. If you are traveling with us this Thanksgiving, consider getting tickets. You won’t want to miss this!

Visit Orpheum Theatre to get tickets now.

Temple Square Christmas Lights – November 26 – Jan 1

Take a shuttle to St George for the holidays.

We have talked before about the Christmas lights, but we’ll keep talking about them as long as we can. Nobody celebrates Christmas quite like Salt Lake City. Throughout the valley, homes put up Christmas lights and displays up and down the street. Salt Lake is beautiful in December. But the crown jewel has to be Temple Square. The Salt Lake Temple is the pride and joy of the city during Christmas time. You can see the light display all across the grounds. They light their tree the day after Thanksgiving every year. Travel to Salt Lake anytime in December to see it.

Holiday Concerts with the Utah Symphony – Multiple dates in December

The Utah Symphony presents a plethora of performances this winter. If you’re in the mood for great music and a powerful performance, this is the stop for you. The Symphony plans to perform a wide range of pieces such as; traditional pieces like Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos 3 & 4 or modern music from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Overall its a great holiday event for music lovers. If you travel with us to Salt Lake this December, stop by Abravanel Concert Hal to check out a performance.

Check out Utah Symphony for dates and performances.

Reasons To Visit Cedar City

Cedar City

If you’ve ever traveled from Salt Lake to Las Vegas, you’ve most likely passed through Cedar City. Residents of Utah will tell you it’s a great stop. But, if you’ve never stopped there, you’re missing out on some of the great things Cedar City has to offer. Cedar City has access to the outdoors, entertainment, and views you can’t find anywhere else. Whether you’ve been there before or not, Salt Lake Express is here to show all the great reasons to visit Cedar City!

Bryce Canyon

Bryce Canyon is one of the five National Parks in Utah. The Canyon has more than fourteen hiking opportunities. Each with their own unique views and access to the park. Visitors to Bryce can find a hike for them no matter how much experience they have. The park also offers opportunities for horseback riding, bird watching, camping, and much more. If you’re traveling with Salt Lake Express, you should definitely add Bryce Canyon to your travel plans.

Zion National Park

Like Bryce Canyon, Zion National Park provides hiking, camping, and other activities for visitors. However, Zion is known as one of the premier national parks in the country. In addition to the activities we’ve already mentioned, Zion provides opportunities for rock climbing, cycling, canyoneering, and more. Visitors with an interest in adventure can go to the extreme in this park. For travelers with a more laid-back approach, there are several tours, small hikes, rivers, and picnic opportunities to enjoy. If you travel to Cedar City, know there is something for everyone in nearby Zion National Park.

Utah Shakespeare Festival

Crowd at the Shakespeare Festival

If you’re looking for something closer to the city, you can always stop by the Utah Shakespeare Festival while they’re in season. We’ve mentioned this festival before. But, no matter how long its been, we always have to mention it again. Because the Utah Shakespeare Festival is amazing. The Festival runs from June through September, and provides entertainment and opportunities for both theatre enthusiasts and thespians. Southern Utah University has hosted the Shakespeare Festival for over fifty years. Each season, actors perform three classic Shakespeare plays. While volunteers help run activities, competitions, seminars, and tours. The festival has also won several awards. Including a Tony, Emmy, and an award from Utah’s governor. If you travel to Cedar City next summer, be sure to stop by the Utah Shakespeare Festival.

Kanarra Falls

Visitors willing to go a short distance outside of Cedar City can visit the beautiful Kanarra Falls. The falls lie in a slot canyon. Hikers have to traverse the narrow canyon floor and climb a short ladder in order to get to the falls. The hike is relatively difficult, so inexperienced hikers had better travel in a group. As always in these situations, bring a first aid kit and let someone know where you are going just in case. The hike requires visitors to wade through water at some point so be willing to get a little wet. The view is definitely worth the trip.

Skiing Opportunities

Cedar City is a short distance from Brian Head Resort. One of the best skiing resorts in Utah. The resort opens ski runs Nov 19, 2021 and will close at the end of ski season. Anyone who loves skiing knows that Utah has the best snow on earth. Professionals love the light, soft, powdery snow that you find in the Rocky Mountains. What better place to enjoy winter weather than a resort with over 71 runs and skiing opportunities. Even if you have no desire to ski, the resort offers plenty of activities, hot and cold, to keep you entertained. If you’re a Salt Lake Express traveler looking for a vacation in the winter, this is the place.

Take a shuttle to St George for the holidays.

Take a Shuttle to St George for the Holidays

We would love to highlight the many great things to do in St. George all in one place. How nice would it be to have a one-stop blog for everything St. George? Of course, anyone who has been here knows that there is simply way too much to do in St. George to cover everything in one blog or even one trip. Even around the holidays, this city comes to life. And even though many of the holiday events have passed, there is still plenty to do to justifying taking a shuttle to St George for the holidays.

Here are a few of the things you still have yet to do in St. George this holiday season.

Take a shuttle to St George to see the many events happening at Tuacahn.

Fairy Tale Christmas

Head on over to Tuacahn Canyon for a new holiday musical, written by M. Scott and Michael Mclean. “Fairy Tale Christmas” is a humorous, enjoyable play for the whole family and involves familiar fairy tale villains kidnapping Santa Claus. Why? You’ll have to go check it out at the Indoor Hafen Theater to know their nefarious purposes. This play runs Mondays through Saturdays at 7:30 pm with matinee shows at 4 pm on Friday and Saturday, through December 23rd. Be sure to head over soon! Once Christmas ends, so will this new and fun fairy tale. You can purchase tickets here.

Christmas in the Canyon

When you’re not enjoying the thrill of a fairy tale on stage, you’ll feel like you’re in one anyway as you walk through Tuacahn. Every year, St. George puts on their Christmas in the Canyon every Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. This free event includes a holiday train ride and music, a live Nativity at 7 and 8 pm, visits with Santa Claus from 6:30 to 9 pm, and, of course, tons of holiday lights. Truly, you haven’t seen the canyon at its most beautiful until you see it all lit up with twinkling holiday lights. This is definitely something to check out while in town.

Plaid Tidings

This special holiday edition of Forever Plaid comes to Brigham’s Playhouse and like the appearance of Santa Claus is a treat to the region of St George. Enjoy classic holiday tunes in four-part harmony, the group’s hilarious backstory, and, of course, their impeccable taste in plaid. Swing by Washington City for to catch a performance, which will happen Thursdays through Saturdays (7 pm each night with a 2 pm Saturday matinee) through December 30th.

Take a shuttle to St George to be with family and friends for the holidays.

Visit Family & Friends

Holidays are about loved ones, and perhaps there is no better reason to take a shuttle to St George than to spend time with yours. If they’re locals, they’ll know all the fun things to do, including what we have already listed. But no matter what you do, we are happy to have brought you this far. These are the holiday memories that you will cherish forever, and we are honored to be part of that.

Jump on a shuttle to St George with St George Express, and have a very Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

The Luminaria at Thanksgiving Point has some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.

Best Christmas Lights in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City and its neighboring cities really come to life around Christmastime. This is perhaps most evident in the lights. From Temple Square to South Jordan, the city is alight with Christmas splendor.

Whether you are just an awestruck passerby or you stand amazed with your camera, there is so much to see this time of year. We at Salt Lake Express highly recommend you take time and make a point of visiting some of these places. It won’t be the holiday season forever and the pictures you take and memories you make now are good all year.

If you are looking for opportunities to enrich that Christmas spirit, you have come to the right place. Here are our picks for the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.


City Creek

If you haven’t made it out to City Creek to do some shopping yet, you probably will before The Big Day. Even if you have, or if you had originally planned to stay far away from the crowds, take it from us, make a trip down purely for the lights. Take a walk and take it in. And see if you can’t block out the hubbub and find peace and serenity in the thousands of twinkling Christmas lights.

Temple Square has some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.

Temple Square

Just across the street from City Creek is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Temple Square. World-renowned by LDS and non-LDS alike for its historical and religious significance, Temple Square is also quite the sight around Christmas. Light displays and nativities dot the landscape, and combined with the enormous, lit-up temple makes for a glowing Salt Lake gem.

Christmas Street in Taylorsville

Why walk around to look at lights when you can stay in the warm car? The good folks on Royalwood Drive in Taylorsville go all out with the Christmas decorations, all for your viewing pleasure. A little more centrally-located than the Sugar House lights and still amazing, swing by Taylorsville for some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.

Christmas In Color

At the Salt Lake County Equestrian Park in South Jordan, you don’t have to get out of your car to take in the Christmas in Color display. The real draw here is the music synchronized light show; tune in your radio to hear the music, throw on some 3D glasses, and prepare to be wowed! Also, be sure to get your tickets before you go.

The Luminaria at Thanksgiving Point has some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.

Luminaria at Thanksgiving Point

Apart from the fantastic Christmas light displays, the truly unique gem here is the Luminaria. Take the mile-long walk through breathtaking, glowing luminaries, culminating in a 120-ft illuminated Christmas tree. There is also a nativity scene on site that includes 35 bronze sculptures of Jesus Christ. Whether you’re looking for reflection or simply spectacle, Thanksgiving Point is the place to be this time of year.

Christmas Street in Sugar House

Another option to view fantastic Christmas lights from the comfort of your car is Glen Arbor Drive in Sugar House. “Christmas Street” has offered some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City for over 70 years, and they show no signs of stopping. This makes for a quick and delightful way to get into the holiday spirit.

Winder Lane Holiday Lights

You don’t always have to go into neighborhoods for a Christmas show. Take a country drive down Winder Lane (4400 West 4100 South) and enjoy not just the lights but the journey. Of course, you have to stop in at Winder Farm Country store for some hot chocolate and freshly baked bread. If you imagine a cozy little Hallmark Christmas town at the end, you wouldn’t be the first.

Gardner Village

Here, the Christmas lights act as a fun prop for the holiday displays and kid-friendly Elf Scavenger Hunt, but they are still incredible. If you are looking for an interactive experience when seeing Christmas lights, The Gardner Village in Midvale is it.

Check out the ZooLights at Hogle Zoo for some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City.Hogle Zoo

According to tradition (and general “manger” trivia), the manger in Bethlehem was full of animals. So why should 2017 stray from such a winning formula? All December long, the Hogle Zoo adds beautiful festive lights to the experience. The kids will love watching the animals as well as the lights, and will likely beg you to take them back throughout the month. The display is inside the zoo, so there is a cost associated — $6.95 for children and $8.95 for adults.

 

Trees of Diversity at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center

We all love the nostalgia and tradition of Christmas as we know it. But if you want to see how Christmas looks to various ethnic groups, check out the Trees of Diversity exhibit at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center. See decorated trees, nativity scenes, gingerbread houses, and more all through the lens of different cultures.


Full disclosure: there are probably close to a hundred great places to see Christmas lights in Utah. A great time to tell you, right? We do believe, however, that this list will definitely get you started on some of the best Christmas lights in Salt Lake City. So bundle up, grab some hot cocoa, and take your loved ones to see some lights!

What are some of your favorite places to see Christmas lights?