If your Christmas includes traveling to a warmer destination this year, consider the Lone Star State. Texas has many fun and interesting locales that celebrate the holiday in their own way. Spend Christmas in Austin this year for a Texas-size dose of holiday cheer, featuring plenty of holiday and year-round activities to keep you busy.
Austin Trail of Lights
The annual Austin Trail of Lights returns for its 59th season in 2023. Starting December 8, the city’s iconic Zilker Park will begin hosting its traditional, in-person format display. The display features over two million lights around the park in 90 lighted holiday trees and over 70 holiday displays and lighted tunnels. The display runs until December 23 and is closed on Mondays. Tickets are available online here.
Field of Light
The event premiered in September at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin. British artist Bruce Munro created the 28,000-light display that spans 16 acres in the Texas Arboretum. The thousands of lights are solar-powered, fiber-optic pods that form a unique reflection of how art, technology, and nature have come together. The Austin, Texas Christmas display runs through December 31, 2023. Tickets are available online here, and a portion of the proceeds benefit the Wildflower Center.
Make a night at the ballet a park of your Christmas plans. Ballet Austin presents “The Nutcracker” at the Long Center for the Performing Arts. The performance is in its 60th year in 2023, and includes music performed by the Austin Symphony Orchestra. Performances run through December 23, and tickets are available on the Ballet Austin website.
Blue Genie Art Bazaar
This Christmas in Austin tradition returns for another year starting November 18, 2023. Come finish your holiday shopping by shopping multiple vendors in one place! Exhibitors will be offering creations like body care products, ceramics, handmade clothing, art, jewelry, and more. You’re bound to find something for just about everyone on your shopping list! You can shop in-store at 6100 Airport Blvd in Austin or online and pick it up or have it shipped. Store hours are November 17 to December 24, 2023, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. daily.
Austin is the capital city of Texas and houses all the government buildings needed for maintaining everything that keeps the state running. Visit the hub of it all this Christmas. The capitol building standing today was completed and dedicated in May of 1888. If you’ve been to the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, you may feel like the Texas capitol building is bigger. In fact, the Texas capitol building is 14.64 feet taller than the U.S. Capitol, as measured from the ground to the top of the Statue of Freedom atop the U.S. Capitol and from ground to the tip of the Goddess of Liberty on the Texas Capitol.
Texas Military Forces Museum
Not your usual Christmas activity, add some interest and education to your trip. The 45,000-square-foot facility lets you wander and explore the history of the Texas militia and volunteer forces dating back to 1823. There are several permanent exhibits that include samples of uniforms, weapons, equipment, personal items, film, music, and much more that reflect life in the Texas military. Check the schedule to see if the museum is hosting any of its many living history programs, battle reenactments, or other special events. The museum is open Tuesday-Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Get wild this Christmas! Spend some time outdoors, wandering the zoo and getting to know its residents. You’ll meet lions, tigers, cougars, and other cats. Marvel at mammals including North American black bears, wolf hybrids, or the interesting coatimundi – a member of the raccoon family that lives 7-15 years and can weigh up to 17 pounds! Primates include the ring-tailed lemur and a variety of monkeys. The zoo showcases native Texas wildlife too, from the Texas leaf-cutting ant to the eastern fox squirrel. Wrap up a visit with domesticated animals like longhorns, miniature donkeys, pot-bellied pigs, and even llamas!
Austin’s New Year
If your Christmas vacation lasts up to the New Year, make sure to celebrate in style. Auditorium Shores is hosting an alcohol-free, family-friendly event. Celebrate the new year, as well as the city’s diversity and creativity with art installations, jugglers, storytellers, fire dancers, and more. Tickets are available at austintexas.gov. If you’re planning to come back again in 2024, you’re in for a treat! Reserve our 2024 vacation rentals in Austin today!
Celebrate Christmas in Austin
When you stay in a vacation rental in Austin provided by Renter’s Club this Christmas, you’ll enjoy easy access to the many area attractions, shopping, dining, and more to make a weekend getaway to remember. We offer one-bedroom units for a more intimate stay, all the way up to a 10-bedroom unit for your large group to enjoy Christmas together in one place. Prepare a meal in the fully equipped kitchen and enjoy it in a spacious dining area. Afterward, spread out in an open living space. Enjoy a private balcony or patio or spend some time near the pool. For a premium experience, choose a unit with bonuses like multiple flat-screen TVs, table tennis, a putting green, stainless steel appliances, and more.