By Andrea Kjaer
When Frosty the Snowman comes south, he doesn’t stay long. Lucky for Atlanta, there is still plenty of Christmas joy to be found. With holiday temperatures expected in the high 50s, you and your loved ones have many options for enjoying the season without having to bundle up too much.
The Holiday Nights in the Botanical Gardens in downtown Atlanta includes even more breathtaking exhibitions this year. Visitors can now explore the synchronized dancing lights hanging over the Storza Woods, in addition to the Walk of Flames, the Tunnel of Light, Orchestral Orbs, Glittering Galaxy, Radiant Rainforest, and the sweet nostalgia of the model train town.
See the gifts from the 12 Days of Christmas illuminated as you drive the seven miles of seasonal decorations on your way through Lake Lanier Lights. Visitors end up in the Holiday Village, where children can see Santa in his workshop and have professional photos taken with him. Afterward, they cans stuff their little faces with melted marshmallows roasted over the well-maintained bonfire and run through the snowy bubbles falling from the holiday lanterns. There’s also a modest carnival to make for a perfect evening of fun.
For those wanting to save their spending for holiday gifts, plenty of lights are displayed for free in local neighborhoods all around the city. Duluth’s Christmas House has something for everybody, as does Christmas in the Cove.
An enterprising frugalista has also compiled a map of other decorated houses in the Atlanta area that are worth seeing so you can make some hot chocolate to go and never leave the comfort of your climate-controlled vehicle.
However you might plan to entertain guests, it seems like there is someone in every family who just can’t deal with all the holiday cheer. Take your grumpiest uncle to see the Grinch in Residence at Ponce City Market, and don’t miss the new cookie dough bar.
Holiday bustle is fun, but everyone knows the greatest magic happens at home, sometimes surrounded by family and sometimes during quiet moments of reflection on the past year.
While it is nice to gather around the fire, the temperatures of Hotlanta are never too far away, and these days most people prefer a more active form of entertainment. Some of the best holiday traditions, after all, include watching old cinematic favorites and finding new ones.
With easy access to Netflix, YouTube, Pandora and more, Xfinity’s X1 Platform allows you to skip between your favorite seasonal movies, shows and tunes with ease. Plus, you can even use the X1 Voice Remote to search for everyone’s requests so you don’t spend half the evening browsing manually.
Whether your holiday celebrations take you outside or keep you curled up on the couch with your favorite people, there’s plenty to do in Atlanta and in your own home that will make new memories.
Lead photo by Flickr user Counse Broders