If you're looking for pandemic friendly way to enjoy the holidays, then check out some holiday lights in and around Maryland -- whether drive through or walk through, holiday lights displays are practically the definition of pandemic safe holiday activity!
Whether drive thru or on foot, this is a safe way to get some holiday cheer while letting your inner child -- or your actual one -- enjoy the magic of the season!
Accept the holiday challenge -- can you do them all? (Cause you know I'm going to!) Also, I know there are usually a lot more light displays, but I left out the ones closed or cancelled due to the pandemic.
Howard County's Symphony of Lights
Symphony of Lights is a dazzling display of more than 100 larger-than-life animated and stationary holiday light creations, made up of more than 300,000 bulbs that you enjoy as you drive through the grounds of Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD.
Getting there: Merriweather Post Pavilion, 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, MD; entrance is on Broken Land Pkwy / Hickory Ridge Rd
Dates and times: Through Jan 2, 2021; walk-thru nights Nov 29, Dec 7, Dec 31.
Winter Festival of Lights
Bring a little twinkle to your holidays at the Winter Festival of Lights is Prince George’s County’s spectacular drive-through Christmas light display featuring more than a 2.5 million twinkling lights in Watkins Regional Park, with a grand finale of a giant, 54-foot LED musical tree.
Dates and times: Daily through Jan 1, 2021, 5 to 9:30 p.m.; free Dec 25.
Annmarie Garden in Lights
The walking tour takes visitors on a spectacular stroll beside handmade one-of-a-kind Christmas light sculptures featuring mythical beasts, wild animals, pirates, illuminated works of art, and more. The event includes nightly entertainment.
Getting there: Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center, 13480 Dowell Road, Dowell (Solomons), MD.
Dates and times: Through Jan 1, 2021; reserve tickets in advance through the website below.
Winter Lights at Seneca Creek
See more than 450 illuminated displays at Winter Lights at Seneca Creek along a 3.5-mile drive through the park. Driving through the enchanted forest setting, you will experience an array of displays that light up the night. Check out the frog prince display, nestled among traditional festival favorites that include a Fantasy Castle and magical unicorn fountain, Winter Woods, Teddy Bear Land, Victorian Village, and the North Pole.
Favorite activities from previous years, such as S’more Lights, Wine Under the Lights, Run Under the Lights, Leashes n’ Lights, will not be held due to the pandemic.
Getting there: Seneca Creek State Park, 11950 Clopper Road Gaithersburg, MD.
Dates and times: Through Dec. 31, 2020; Sunday - Thursday: 6 - 9 p.m., Friday & Saturday: 6 - 9:30 p.m. Closed Dec. 25
The fleet -- most of which floats serenely in Carroll Creek -- includes gaff-rigged ketches, yawls, three-masted schooners and pirate ships, moored with their sail outlines, rigging and decks lit up from dusk till dawn. Over the years, the regatta has grown from one boat to 25 boats. Sailing through the Solstice will remain in place through the first weekend in February 2021. You can "vote" on your favorite by purchasing votes for charity.
Getting there: Carroll Creek Linear Park, Market Street, Frederick MD
Dates and times: Dusk through dawn, daily, through first weekend in February 2021
Lights on the Bay
Unleash your inner child during the drive through the Lights on the Bay display's 2-mile scenic drive along the shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Sandy Point State Park. With approximately 70 animated and stationary displays illuminating the roadway reflecting both the holiday season and traditional Annapolis symbols such as crabs, blue herons, and even U.S. Naval Academy cadets throwing their hats into the sky.
Getting there: Sandy Point State Park, 100 E College Pkwy, Annapolis, MD 21409
Dates and times: Through Jan 2 2021, 5 - 10 p.m.
Winter Walk of Lights at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
Let yourself be dazzled by the magical Winter Walk of Lights at Meadowlark's 95 acres and half-mile long walk of lights. My favorite is the Fountains of Lights -- unique light fountains animated with all types of cool colors and patterns.
Getting there: 9750 Meadowlark Gardens Ct, Vienna, VA
Dates and times: Open nightly through Sunday, January 3, 2021; all tickets must be purchased in advance through the website below.
Bull Run Festival of Lights
Brighten your holiday season with the magical 2.5 miles of illuminated light displays. In addition, the carnival and holiday village are back with COVID-19 safety changes in place.