Twinkling Nights and Tacky Lights
From festive decorations of long ago to the twinkle of modern lights, the Richmond Region is the perfect place to get away for the holidays. Let this itinerary be your guide to planning a holiday tour today!
This 15th-century Tudor home, originally built in Lancashire, England, was rebuilt on the banks of the James River in 1926. Set amid gardens, this country manor house is lovingly decorated for the holiday season and features an extensive collection of Tudor- and early Stuart-period art and furniture pieces.
Just next door is the 16th-century Virginia House, also originally built in England. Here you can make a gingerbread house before enjoying an afternoon tea service and house tour.
Known for its variety of one-of-a-kind shops, boutiques and food stores, Carytown is the perfect place to find those unique gifts you’ve been looking for.
Virginia State Capitol
Designed by Thomas Jefferson in 1788, the Commonwealth’s Capitol gets into the holiday spirit when the Governor, First Lady, Santa and Virginia Military representatives join together for the lighting of the official state tree. The tree lighting is followed by an open house at the Executive Mansion, where the public can tour the Governor’s home in all its holiday splendor.
Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
On display from late November to early January, the Dominion GardenFest of Lights features more than a half-million holiday lights arranged in botanical themes throughout the garden.
Before returning to your hotel, enjoy a drive through the Region’s neighborhoods and take in all the ornate decorations. Stop for a stroll through the James Center with its thousands of white lights and hundreds of lighted reindeer.
Enjoy dazzling tours of the Maymont Mansion, lavishly decorated with Victorian Christmas décor, and experience old-fashioned Christmas festivities.
The Jefferson Hotel
The Jefferson’s beautiful decorations, giant gingerbread house and magnificent tree will put anybody in a holiday spirit.
Richmond Region Tacky Lights Tour
For your evening entertainment, take the beloved Richmond Tacky Lights Tour. Mapped routes are available each year that feature the most outlandishly decorated houses in the Region. This is one ride that won’t soon be forgotten!
SPECIAL ANNUAL EVENTS
Swift Creek Mill Theatre
Enjoy dinner and theatre in this restored 1630s gristmill, believed to be the oldest gristmill in the nation.
Historic Christmas at Hanover Tavern
One of only a few surviving colonial-era taverns in the United States, Hanover Tavern comes alive for the holidays with visits from colonial Santa and Mrs. Claus, a community bake sale and holiday crafts. Join in with carolers and enjoy refreshments on the porch before the official Hanover Tavern tree lighting.
James River Parade of Lights
Decorated boats parade the waterway on the James River every year.
Court End Christmas
The Valentine Richmond History Center, Museum & White House of the Confederacy, John Marshall House & Gardens and St. John’s Church host musical performances, carriage rides and more.
Capital City Kwanzaa Festival
The festival features performances, children’s activities and an African market.
The Nutcracker Ballet
The Richmond Ballet invites families to join Clara on her journey through a holiday dream at The Carpenter Center at Richmond CenterStage.