10 of the Best Free Christmas Events in Orlando

Nov 25, 2020

10 of the Best Free Christmas Events in Orlando | Free Things to Do in Orlando Florida for Families
By Rachel La Pointe

10 Of The Best Free Christmas Events In Orlando

Who’s ready for a holly, jolly holiday season?! This was a year unlike any other in recent history. So much of how we live day to day has changed, but the joy and excitement we feel for the Christmas season remains the same! With major Orlando holiday events, like Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Walt Disney World, being put on hold this year as large crowds are discouraged, local organizations are getting creative with how they can carry on with the city’s favorite Christmas traditions. From socially distanced concerts in the park to immersive drive-thru experiences, there are still plenty of options for those looking to get their fix of holiday fun.

To help spread some joy, check out 10 of the Best Free Christmas Events in Orlando this year - or steal some fun holiday vacation ideas from our 51 Things to Do in Orlando Florida article in our Travel Blog!

1 | Disney Springs Christmas Tree Trail | An instant holiday classic in the Orlando area since its debut in 2015, the Trail of Trees is an elaborately-decorated collection of Christmas trees set up at Disney Springs for your viewing pleasure! Each tree is thoughtfully decorated according to its own theme, typically a beloved Disney ride or movie, which in past years has included Toy Story, the Haunted Mansion, Alice in Wonderland, Star Wars, Tangled and many more. While previously enclosed in a gated area, complete with lightly falling snow and pop-up stands to purchase hot cocoa and seasonal Disney souvenirs, the set up will be a little different this year. To comply with social distancing measures and keep everyone safe, the trees will be set up all throughout Disney Springs. Make it a family affair and watch your loved one’s eyes light up as they spot the tree adorned with décor from their favorite Disney classic. And don’t forget to inspect each tree for some hidden Mickey’s! The Trail of Trees runs November 6 – December 30, 2020.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Focus on what is important. With so many items on your “to do” list during the Holidays, don’t be afraid to say no or scrap something if it is just too much.

2 | Holiday Pops by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra | This free holiday concert under the stars is sure to put you in a festive mood. Pack a blanket, grab some takeout and fill your cup with your favorite “spirit” – then sit back and relax as the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra masterfully perform the sounds of the season. The Winter Park show is Sunday, December 6th at 5pm. Admission is free, but tickets must be reserved in advance. Tickets become available to reserve at 9am on Sunday, November 29th and 1 ticket is good for up to 6 people! While this event may fill up fast, fear not – there is another show on Saturday, December 12 in Apopka. If you manage to score a ticket for your group, you will have a “pod” reserved in the grass to ensure proper social distancing. Safe, fun, festive!

HOLIDAY TIPS | Don’t go too overboard spending on gifts, create a budget and stick with it, so you’re not stuck paying for the Holiday all year long.

3 | Eola Wonderland Christmas Tree Show | There’s nothing quite like a brisk, winter stroll through the park around Christmastime. While the air here is a bit warmer than it is up north and there won’t be any snow, Lake Eola does a great job of creating some holiday magic right in downtown Orlando. After a virtual tree lighting celebration streaming on December 5th, you can catch the tree show, with music synchronized with the lights at the Lake Eola Foundation, each night in the park starting at 5:45pm and running each hour until 9:45pm.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Give your Mom a hug, if you can’t, give her a call on the phone and tell her how much you appreciate her. This might seem obvious during the Holidays, but a simple reminder always helps.

4 | Memories of Christmas in the Park | A Winter Park holiday tradition with a 2020 twist, Memories of Christmas in the Park will be held outside in Central Park this year. As you walk through the park, you’ll be treated to sounds of the Bach Festival Choir. The main stage will also feature a 10-minute video loop of memories of past Christmas in the Park events. Start your evening with a meal at one of the many fantastic eateries that line Park Avenue – most offer outdoor seating for a night that’s as safe as it is seasonal. Memories of Christmas in the Park is happening Thursday, December 3rd from 6:00-8:30pm.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Give your Mom a hug, if you can’t, give her a call on the phone and tell her how much you appreciate her. This might seem obvious during the Holidays, but a simple reminder always helps.

5 | Celebrate the Season at Reiter Park | This Longwood Christmas celebration is jam packed with fun for the entire family. Celebrate the Season at Reiter Park is taking place this year on Friday, December 4th from 6:30-9:00pm. The event features live entertainment, food trucks and Santa’s Workshop, a holiday shopping experience for kids. Kids can shop for Christmas gifts for their friends, siblings and parents, with all items ranging in price from $1-$15. Make sure you stick around until the end – a firework show at 8:30pm concludes the festive evening!

HOLIDAY TIPS | Don’t drink too much! It can be easy to overindulge in the Holiday “Spirit,” so try your best not to - it'll work out better for everyone.

6 | The Lights on Jeater Bend | Holiday cheer at your own pace, on your own time. Venture out to the town of Celebration to visit the spectacular lights and Christmas decorations of 11 private homes on Jeater Bend Drive. This annual production features synchronized lights and music among the homes, as well as inflatables and projections. For best viewing, street park on Celebration Avenue and walk. There is so much to see you won’t be able to take it all in from your car! The Lights on Jeater Bend will be dazzling continuously from 6:00-9:30pm, November 26th to December 31st.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Keep your workout routine. If you have a workout routine, keep it going strong to help you stay healthy during the Holidays.

7 | 8th Annual Violectric Holiday Show | O’ come all ye rock lovers! The Violectric Holiday Show is a one of a kind strings concert, combining traditional Christmas carols with classic and modern rock hits. The show is free, and donations are accepted but not required. This year, the talented musicians of Violectric have teamed up with the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando. Attendees are encouraged to bring their pets or donate some supplies or cash. After all – this is the season of giving! Taking place Saturday, December 12th at the Lake Eola Walt Disney Amphitheater, this one is a can’t miss! Pro Tip: Show up early or risk missing out on a seat. Seating capacity will be limited to 50 percent.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Dress to impress! Wear that Ugly Sweater with pride and enjoy every moment of the Holidays!

8 | Santa’s Winter Wonderland Village at Waterford Lakes Town Center | Running December 4th through January 3rd, Santa’s Winter Wonderland Village at Waterford Lakes Town Center is a unique festival experience celebrating the joy of the Christmas season. In addition to special holiday treats and amusement rides, the village will provide the opportunity to take photos with Santa, the Grinch, a snowman, and more. Bonus – Waterford Lakes Town Center is an official Toys for Tots collection center. Bring a toy to do some good while having a good time!

HOLIDAY TIPS | Don’t just give presents, be present! Put down that smartphone!

9 | TwELF Days of Christmas | Drive-thru holiday experiences are the perfect alternative to the crowded gatherings of Christmases past. Keep your family safe this season by reserving a ticket to TwELF Days of Christmas at St. Luke’s Methodist Church! Happening for two weekends only, December 11-13 and December 18-20, this experience allows you to drive alongside North Pole Elves while enjoying stories brought to life by local actors, live music, and bright holiday lights!

HOLIDAY TIPS | Don’t feel guilty indulging in those delicious Holiday treats, it’s only once a year!

10 | 60th Annual Mount Dora Christmas Parade | Absolutely nothing rings in a holiday like a parade! Thankfully, with some careful consideration, the 60th Annual Mount Dora Christmas Parade is still a go. Venture on over to charming downtown Mount Dora on the morning of December 5th to check out the floats, enjoy some holiday music and really fill your heart with the holiday spirit. With tons of unique, local shops and eateries, Mount Dora is the perfect place to pick-up a last-minute gift for that special someone.

HOLIDAY TIPS | Give, give, give! Remember in the Season of Giving, it is always better to give than to receive.

It’s clear that there is no shortage of Christmas cheer in the City Beautiful this holiday season. There is so much to be grateful for, and no better way to show your gratitude then by spending quality time with those you love most this time of year. So, throw on a Santa hat and festive face mask, keep 6-feet apart and hit the town! We wish you a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy holiday season!

Craving Christmas In Orlando?

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