Christmas in Austin is a special time.
The city comes alive with holiday lights and decorations, and there is a sense of excitement in the air.
Families come together to celebrate, and there are plenty of festive traditions to enjoy.
Also Read: 24 Best Places to enjoy Christmas in Texas
Best Things to do for Christmas in Austin
Austin is most well-known for its live music scene and bats, but did you know that the city also offers a wide range of festive activities during the holiday season?
From holiday markets to light shows and Santa sightings, here are some of the best things to do for Christmas in Austin.
Also Read: 31 Best Things to do in Austin, Texas
Be dazzled by the Peppermint Parkway in Austin
The Peppermint Parkway drive through lights are one of the best things to do for Christmas in Austin, Texas.
Located at Circuit of the Americas, the lights are a festive way to enjoy the holiday season.
To experience the lights, simply drive through them at a slow speed.
You’ll be treated to a dazzling display of holiday cheer, complete with dancing elves, snowflakes, and Santa Claus himself.
The multicolored lights are synchronized to holiday music, creating a festive and magical atmosphere.
Enjoy the charming Austin Trail of Lights
The Austin Trail of Lights is a beloved holiday tradition in the city of Austin, Texas.
Spanning over two miles, the trail winds through Zilker Park, home to a variety of Austin’s most iconic attractions.
The trail is illuminated with millions of lights, making it a truly magical experience.
Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities along the way, including live music, activities, and Santa meet-and-greets.
Or participate in the Austin Trail of Lights Fun Run to combine a workout with partying.
The Austin Trail of Lights is open to the public from December 8th through December 23rd 2022.
Be sure to bring your camera so you can capture the beauty of the lights.
Enjoy the Downtown Holiday Stroll
The Downtown Holiday Stroll is one of our favorite ways to get into the holiday spirit in Austin.
The event takes place on the first Saturday in December and features live music, dance performances, food trucks, and Santa Claus himself.
The highlight is the Christmas tree lightning in front of the Texas State Capitol in Downtown Austin.
The whole family can enjoy the festivities.
In addition, there will be a holiday market with local vendors selling unique gifts, and dozens of food trucks serving up delicious holiday treats.
Also Read: 13 Best Things to do in Texas in winter
Sip hot chocolate at Mozart’s Coffee Roasters
Mozart’s Coffee is the perfect place to enjoy some sweet treats and enjoy amazing views of Lake Austin.
The best part?
You can sit down with a delicious cup of hot chocolate while listening to holiday music and viewing their beautiful light show.
The show features choreographed lights that dance to popular Christmas music – very pretty and popular with all ages.
The show lasts for 15 mins and the highlight is seeing the Christmas lights reflected on the waters of Lake Austin.
Ride the North Pole Flyer at the Austin Steam Train
All aboard the North Pole Flyer!
The Austin Steam Train offers a holiday-themed train ride that takes you through the Texas Hill Country.
During the ride, you’ll enjoy festive music and treats, as well as a visit from Santa Claus himself.
This is a great activity for families with young children, as it’s a unique and fun way to get into the holiday spirit.
Enjoy holiday performances and shows in the city
If you’re looking for some holiday entertainment, there are plenty of options in Austin.
The city is home to a diverse range of holiday shows, from traditional to contemporary.
Watch ‘The Nutcracker’ by Ballet Austin, enjoy a festive holiday concert at the Long Center, or take in ‘A Christmas Carol’ at the Zach Theatre.
Enjoy a free movie in the parks
Austin has several holiday movie screenings during the season.
You can watch classic holiday movies like ‘Elf’ and ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ in parks across the city.
Be sure to bring a blanket or chair to sit on, and don’t forget the popcorn and hot cocoa!
Many theatres in the city also host screenings of other classics such as A Christmas Story, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and Home Alone.
Buy holiday gifts at the local Christmas markets
There are several Christmas markets in Austin where you can find unique gifts for your loved ones.
The Blue Genie Art Bazaar is a popular option, with over 200 local and regional artists selling their wares.
You can also find handmade gifts, jewelry, and more at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar held at Palmer Events Center.
Enjoy a Victorian Holiday tea at the Driskill
The Driskill Hotel is one of Austin’s most iconic landmarks, and during the holidays it is even more beautiful.
The hotel has a beautiful Christmas tree in the lobby that is covered in decorations and ornaments.
The hotel also hosts a Victorian Holiday Tea, where you can enjoy tea and holiday treats while listening to live music.
If you’re looking for a more unique experience, the Driskill also offers ghost tours during the holidays.
Visit a Christmas Tree farm
If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, take a drive out to one of Austin’s Christmas tree farms.
You can cut your own tree or simply enjoy the festive atmosphere.
Some of our favorite Christmas tree farms in Austin include Elgin Farms and Evergreen Farm.
Austin is a truly special holiday destination in the Lone Star State.
The city comes alive witha holiday cheer, and there are plenty of festive activities to enjoy.
What are you planning to do in Austin this holiday season? Let us know below!