Whether you’re a local or just visiting Central Florida’s Polk County this holiday season, the sweet options for enjoying Christmas light displays around the area will shed new light (????) on Florida’s Sweetest Spot.
The Best Holiday Light Displays in Central Florida
From professional holiday light displays at famous attractions to neighborhoods that go all-out to compete like Clark Griswold from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation lived there, you are in for a treat. Below is just a taste of what you might discover while out and about, including a winning display that appeared on network television.
Santa’s House by the Bigda’s
4314 Shadow Wood Trail, Winter Haven
The Bigda Family of Winter Haven was featured on, and won their episode of, ABC’s “The Great Christmas Light Fight” in 2020. Experience Santa’s House by the Bigda’s nightly, from Dec. 2 until New Year’s Eve. This year’s display is set to feature Toy Story characters and Alvin and the Chipmunks, along with more than 100,000 Christmas lights pulsating to your favorite Christmas songs. Tune your car radio to 87.9 to sync up with the music and keep your eyes peeled for Santa, who makes an appearance between 7 and 8 PM.
The Wonderland of Lights & Santa’s Village
The International Market World, 1052 US-92, Auburndale
This holiday light show is returning December 1-30, 2023 from 6 to 9 p.m. This event is hosted at International Market World in Auburndale, with more space to have more days, more entertainment, more vendors, more visitors, and more room to roam.
Not only will you enjoy a mile of holiday lights, but there will be entertainment, vendors, and food options!
Curtis Family Lights
Yarborough Lane, 1/4 mile south of 540-A, Lakeland
The Curtis Family Christmas Light display has been thrilling holiday viewers for a decade. Their labor of love returns at the beginning of December.
Central Park, on Central Ave. in Downtown Winter Haven
Winter Haven’s Starlight Nights will light up Central Park on Dec. 1 and run through Jan. 6. Special events, including the tree-lighting ceremony on Nov. 30, Carols In the Park on Dec. 2 and SantaCon on Dec. 15 will span the six-week period. Some storefronts will even extend their store hours Thursday-Saturday.
Christmas Lane in Bartow
E. George Street & Spring Court in Bartow
You’ll find quite a few streets in this area decorated with amazing light displays! Make sure you explore Spring Court, and then go across to E. George Street and down all of the side streets (Helen St. & Lila Circle) from there. You know it has to be good when it is known as “Christmas Tree Lane” to the locals!
From December 17 – 24, nightly from 6 to 10 pm you can ride through the decorated neighborhoods of Bartow in horse-drawn carriage. Prices range from $15-25 for kids and $20-50 for adults. You can also enjoy pony rides, train rides, food trucks, hot chocolate, games and other fun activities before your carriage ride. Visit the Bartow Christmas Light Tours Website to book your carriage tour.
Downtown Lakeland’s Christmas Lights
Downtown Lakeland & Munn Park
The Christmas Lights in downtown Lakeland are a tradition dating back more than 50 years. There isn’t an event or lighting ceremony to commemorate but locals know the lights are lit after sunset on Thanksgiving. Santa and his reindeer fly high atop the Lakeland Electric office building and a tree floating on Lake Mirror plays Christmas music. Visitors to Munn Park are greeted by large toy soldiers who stand guard over the walkways and other displays.
Holidays at LEGOLAND
One LEGOLAND Way, Winter Haven
LEGOLAND Florida Resort is lighting up the season with their Holidays at LEGOLAND presented by Hallmark Channel on Nov. 24-26 and Dec. 2-3, 9-10, 16-17, 22-31, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The park’s new LEGO City Holiday Light Spectacular will bring LEGO City to life with sparkling lights, holiday music and a spectacular light show on the giant 30-foot LEGO Christmas tree. Guests can enjoy this interactive spectacle in full 360-degrees, as dazzling lights dance along to holiday tunes. And Kids’ New Year’s Eve Fireworks make their return in 2022, illuminating the night sky with colorful bursts of LEGO bricks at the kid-friendly time of 8 p.m. every night from Dec. 26 to Dec. 31. Guests can enjoy all these things, and so much more, with regular theme park admission.
Insider Tip: Save your 3-D glasses after watching the Kids’ New Year’s Eve Fireworks at LEGOLAND Florida Resort and wear them as you tour neighborhoods for more Christmas light viewing. The lights will have an added flare, looking like LEGO Bricks.
Tera Lane & King Road
King Road SW & Tera Lane, Winter Haven
The competitive neighbors living along the Tera Lane cul-de-sac, off King Road, have been delighting Christmas light fans for decades. Santa and Mrs. Claus have even been spotted handing out candy canes to passersby on select evenings.