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When it comes to celebrating the holiday season in a fun, safe, and family friendly way, there’s nothing quite like a huge, dazzling light display to enjoy with your younger or older counterparts.  Here in the Tampa Bay area, there are a handful of holiday and Christmas light displays one can head out and enjoy for a fun (and often affordable) holiday experience.  Here are some of our favorites.

Wild Wonderland at Lowry Park Zoo – Wild Wonderland is a nightly wintertime event at Tampa’s famous Lowry Park Zoo that transforms the park into a lighted winter wonderland live you’ve probably never seen before.  Open nightly starting December 8, then running from December 14-23 and 26-30, Wild Wonderland will play host to over a million lights strewn throughout the park as well as real snow falling over the park, children’s attractions, rides, winter wildlife and more.

Christmas Town at Busch Gardens – Busch Gardens will follow suite with their nightly wintertime event series Christmas Town, taking place from November 23 through December 30.  Christmas Town will open after regular park hours at Busch Gardens with tons of lights, decorations, real snow, and nightly performances from legendary Christian rock outfit Jars of Clay.

Symphony in Lights at the Shops at Wiregrass – The Shops at Wiregrass in North Tampa will host their annual holiday celebration Symphony in Lights from November 17 to December 31.  This annual event series will feature an enchanted tree lighting ceremony on Tuesday, November 27 as well as an amazing light show choreographed to the epic Christmas music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra taking place on the hour every night from 6 to 9 p.m.

River of Lights Christmas Cruises – Yacht Starship is hosting their annual holiday cruise taking place every Sunday in December (2nd, 9th, 16th, and 23rd) and Wednesday, December 19 aboard the Yacht Starship on the Hillsborough River.  Departing at 6:30 p.m. each night, the River of Lights Christmas Cruise will take guests on an elegant cruise on the river where dozens of buildings and bridges will light up the holiday night sky.  There will also be a chorus of carolers on board as well as a traditional holiday buffet, appearances from Santa, hot chocolate, and more.

Holiday Lights in the Gardens – Taking place across the Bay at the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo, Holiday Lights in the Garden will feature over 500,000 holiday lights strewn throughout the beautiful gardens as well as nightly performances from dancers, musicians, carolers, and more.  Holiday Lights in the Gardens runs from November 23 through January 1.

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