Lancaster County offers a host of family-friendly things to do throughout the year, but during the holiday season, we love to celebrate! Here is a list of the top 10 things we love to do during the holiday season.
Visit the Garden Spot Train Room. The Garden Spot Village Train Room offers a series of holiday open houses stretching from the Saturday after Thanksgiving through the New Year. These popular open houses delight visitors of all ages. The HO-gauge train layout includes Thomasville and the ever-popular “Talk with Thomas” event. The O-gauge layout includes an elevated track. Both layouts provide plenty of train action complemented with heavily detailed scenery. Free and open to the public.
Refreshing Mountain Retreat’s Christmas Light Adventures. Refreshing Mountain combines a festive atmosphere and amazing winter activities to inspire you to get into the spirit of Christmas. The adventure center’s property is adorned with beautiful Christmas-time light displays that are sure to be a magical place for you and your family. Adventures range from donation-only strolls to zipline and obstacle course adventures. Book your adventure today!
Yuletide at Wheatland. Discover what the holiday season was like during the lifetime of President James Buchanan. In a guided tour, a historically costumed guide takes visitors through both floors of the decorated mansion, exploring the history of the Christmas holiday as James Buchanan and others in the mid-Victorian era celebrated or experienced it. Reserve your tickets online.
Amish Christmas Cookie Tour. Everyone loves Christmas cookies! This relaxing and festive journey includes visits to three authentic Amish homes to sample homemade Christmas cookies. You’ll leave with an appreciation of another culture along with recipes and cookies to take home and enjoy. Tours run on Fridays and Saturdays, mid-November through Christmas. Reserve your tour here.
Visit a “Christmas Village.” An abundance of Christmas Villages can be found in and around Lancaster County—from Koziar’s Christmas Village to Kitchen Kettle Village at Christmas, the Christmas Village at Ironstone Ranch and the Bird-in-Hand Christmas Village. Each “village” offers a unique take on the holiday season.
Select a fresh cut tree. Christmas tree farms scattered throughout the county offer fresh cut trees with the bonus of a family tradition. Heritage Tree Farm, Country Barn Market, Miller’s Christmas Tree Farm and Texter Mountain Pines offer quality, locally grown trees with adventure.
Strasburg Railroad Christmas Tree Train. Looking for a family tradition they will never forget? Board the Strasburg Railroad Christmas Tree Train and ride to Leaman Place Grove where you can choose and purchase a fresh-cut Christmas tree. Already have a tree? Choose Santa’s Paradise Express or Night Before Christmas trains for a holiday ride to remember.
Take in a Christmas Production. Local music theaters offer holiday-inspired productions. From American Music Theatre to Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre and Sight & Sound, local theaters offer quality entertainment for all ages.
Gather Yuletide Goodies. Lancaster’s Central Market, the nation’s oldest, continuously running farmers’ market, offers seasonal treats, from meats and produce to holiday pies and cookies. Open Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays fro 6am to 3pm.
Catch a glimpse of Santa. Throughout the holiday season, Santa appears in various places throughout the county. In 2022, Santa will be escorted by the Lancaster City Bureaus of Fire and Police on December 8, 10 and 17 as he visits downtown and the neighborhoods.