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Things to Do in Houston for the Holidays

Don’t just sit there twiddling your thumbs like a broken record player this holiday season, Houston has a cornucopia of festivities waiting for you.

From the magical performances of ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘The Nutcracker’ to the twinkling outdoor splendor of the Moody Gardens Festival of Lights, the city is a winter wonderland that’ll make any Scrooge smile.

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Add in some family-friendly events like the annual Christmas Tree Lighting at Wortham Theater Center, and you’ve got the perfect recipe for holiday cheer.

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg, Houston has so much more to offer.

So, why not explore what else the city has in store this holiday season?

Key Takeaways

  • Magical Candlelight Concerts featuring treasured wintertime classics by master composers like Tchaikovsky and Vivaldi
  • Festive Markets including traditional holiday shopping experiences and quirky shopping experiences
  • Family-Friendly Holiday Events such as interstellar displays, Christmas tree lighting, and enchanting zoo lights
  • Unique Holiday Dining Experiences including mysterious culinary adventures and hidden bars and lounges

Magical Holiday Concerts

enchanting holiday music extravaganza

Immerse yourself in the enchanting world of Magical Candlelight Concerts, where you can enjoy treasured wintertime classics from master composers like Tchaikovsky and Vivaldi in a beautifully romantic candlelit setting. This event is one of the standout events near Houston this weekend.

You don’t need to be a classical music aficionado to appreciate the magic that fills Jones Hall during these performances. The live orchestra, featuring the Houston Symphony Chorus, weaves a spell of holiday music that’s hard to resist.

This holiday season, make sure to also catch the Houston Ballet and the Mayor’s Holiday Spectacular, with special guest Mandy Gonzalez. These concerts, combined with the Magical Candlelight Concerts, make for a delightful holiday experience, providing a unique way to usher in the holiday season.

Houston’s Festive Markets

holiday shopping in houston

After soaking up the magical melodies of Houston’s holiday concerts, you’ll find that the city’s festive markets add an extra layer of charm to your holiday experience.

For a traditional holiday shopping experience, head to ‘Home for the Holidays’ in Old Town Spring. This annual holiday event runs from November 11 to Christmas Eve.

If you want something quirky, don’t miss the ‘Merry Creepmas Market’ at the National Museum of Funeral History.

Downtown Houston also hosts family-friendly activities at the City Place Giant Gingerbread Village, while POST Houston stages exciting events.

Wrap up the holiday festivities at Moody Gardens Festival of Lights, a must-visit Christmas spectacle in Houston.

These vibrant markets are guaranteed to make your holidays in Houston unforgettable.

Family-Friendly Holiday Events

fun filled holiday activities for families

Diving into the heart of Houston’s holiday events, you’ll find a plethora of family-friendly performances, festivals, and outdoor activities that can turn your holiday season into a memorable adventure. Whether it’s the twinkling Winter Lights at Space Center Houston or the lively Strand in downtown Galveston, there’s no shortage of family fun.

  1. Kick off the holiday season at Galaxy Lights at Space Center Houston. This interstellar display is sure to mesmerize the entire family.
  2. Don’t miss the annual Christmas Tree Lighting at Discovery Green, where you can also ice skate under the stars.
  3. Venture to the Houston Zoo for their enchanting Zoo Lights event.

Lastly, immerse yourself in a tropical holiday experience at Moody Gardens, where you can marvel at beautiful lights, ice sculptures, and more.

Staycation Ideas in Houston

explore houston s staycation options

Looking for an unforgettable holiday staycation right in Houston? You’re in luck! Your city is brimming with festive activities.

Staycation Ideas Location
Houston Ballets: ‘The Nutcracker’ Wortham Theater Center
‘A Christmas Carol’ Alley Theatre
Merry Pops Jones Hall
Lights Downtown Holiday City Hall
Gingerbread Village City Place

Start with a performance of ‘A Christmas Carol’ or ‘The Nutcracker’. Then, head to City Hall to see the holiday tree and enjoy ‘Lights Downtown Holiday’. Don’t miss the Gingerbread Village at City Place in Old Town. And, if you’re up for outdoor ice activities, visit the skating rink at Discovery Green. Also, consider spending a day at ‘Dickens on The Strand’ for a unique holiday experience.

Unique Holiday Dining Experiences

unconventional holiday dining options

Once you’ve immersed yourself in the merry ambiance of Houston’s holiday events, you’ll certainly want to explore the city’s unique holiday dining experiences that promise to add a dash of culinary excitement to your festivities.

Houston’s food scene showcases a blend of fun and festive activities for a memorable holiday experience.

Here are three distinctive options to consider:

  1. Dining in Darkness: Transform your holiday tradition by enhancing your senses in a mysterious, Texas-style culinary adventure.
  2. Magical Candlelight Concerts: Get lost in a winter wonderland with music from Broadway leading ladies while dining.
  3. Hidden Bars and Retro Lounges: The Strand hosts hidden gems like Mijos Mezcal Bar, where you can hear a heartwarming story, sip glamorous drinks, and feel the holiday spirit.

Don’t forget to visit a gingerbread house for a sweet ending to your holiday dining.


So, you see, there’s no shortage of holiday cheer in Houston. From magical concerts to festive markets, family events, and unique dining experiences, the city is buzzing with excitement.

Whether you’re a local planning a staycation or a visitor exploring the city, Houston offers a plethora of activities to make your holidays memorable.

So slip on your warmest coat, lace up your skates, and dive into the holiday spirit, Houston-style!

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