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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?