The holiday season is upon us, and Christmas will be here before you know it! This year especially, we could all use an extra dose of holiday cheer. Whether you go for a familiar favorite or want to try something new, get your family in the spirit with these festive activities around town.
Water Wonderland with scuba Santa-Newport Aquarium
Deck the halls underwater this season at The Newport Aquarium. The aquarium is decorated with holiday lights and festive music plays throughout your visit. Elves will also be walking around for the kids to meet, and of course, scuba Santa will be swimming with sharks and ready to hear Christmas wish lists.
Nov. 27-Dec. 24. General Admission for adults is $25.99 for children $17.99
Coney Island-Christmas Nights of Lights
This Christmas light display is the perfect event to visit during this time of social distancing. Brought to you from the comfort of your car, this is an ideal event to safely celebrate the holidays with the people in your household. The light show synchronizes to a radio station that plays Christmas music as you drive by over a million lights on display.
Nov. 6-Jan. 9, 2021. Free admission.
Santa’s Workshop at Washington Park
Santa and his elves will make an appearance at Washington Park this year, tinkering away in their workshop on ornaments and other gifts. Have your kids make their Christmas lists with the elves so they can tell Santa when they take a photo with him. You can even bring your dog to join this family holiday adventure!
Nov. 28-Dec. 19. Free admission, you must bring your own camera for photos.
PNC Festival of Lights at the Cincinnati Zoo
The PNC Festival of Lights is a classic Cincinnati event for the holidays, and you don’t want to miss it this year! Rated the best zoo-lights festival in the country, this family-friendly event is back with four million lights, the North Polar Express train ride, Santa visits, and more.
Nov. 21-Jan. 3, 2021. Reservations are required. Ticket prices vary day-to-day: children $7-$15.50, adults $12-$21.50, seniors $7-$15.50.
Ice Rink at Fountain Square
Tis the season for ice skating! Fountain Square’s ice rink is back with a twist this year with full- and split-ice sessions where half of the rink is reserved for skating and the other half is dedicated to bumper cars! Each rink session includes 60 minutes on the ice.
Nov. 7-Feb. 15, 2021. Reservations are required. Tickets are $15 per person for split-ice sessions, which includes unlimited bumper car rides for 60 minutes. $10 per person for full-ice skating sessions.
The Nutcracker at the Cincinnati Ballet
The Nutcracker goes virtual this year. Music Hall presents the holiday classic reimagined by Artistic Director Victoria Morgan. The hour-long performance follows the familiar tale of Clara and her Nutcracker Prince that you can enjoy from the comfort of your home.
This event is free. Details about viewing times are to be announced on the Cincinnati Ballet website.
Christmas Town at the Creation Museum
Celebrate the holidays with a live nativity and petting zoo at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky. Enjoy a synthetic ice rink, festive goodies, shopping, and botanical gardens decked out in thousands of lights to walk through.
Wed-Sun from Nov. 27 through Dec. 20 and every evening from Dec. 21-30. Admission is free, and skating is $7.99 a person.
Christmas Journey at EnterTRAINment Junction
Choo! Choo! Home to the world’s largest indoor model railroad display, EnterTRAINment Junction’s popular holiday train displays are back in season. You and your family can venture through a winter wonderland that leads to the reindeer stables and elf workshop. Finish your trip by visiting Mrs. Claus, hard at work in her kitchen, and enjoy a private video chat with Santa.
Nov. 21-Dec. 31. General admission is free. Train Journey tickets: child $11.95, adult $14.95, senior $11.95