Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Fun Christmas Attractions in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

The holiday season is upon us, and if you're anything like me, you're itching to do some 'holiday stuff' with your family.  And I'm not talking crafts or baking- I mean, cool trips that you can take for some holiday themed fun! So here are 5 of my favorite must-visit holiday locations in the tri-state area.  And would you believe some of them cost less than $5 per person (and some are FREE)?

Jersey Momma Disclaimer:  I know there are hundreds of amazing Christmas and holiday-themed places to visit in and around New Jersey, but I picked some of my favorite, and even some lesser-known attractions. I mentioned a few more at the end of the post, but feel free to leave some more suggestions in the comment boxes below!

1. Christmas Ice Caverns - Fairfield, NJ

If you grew up in Northern New Jersey during the 1970's, then chances are you've been to the Christmas Ice Caverns in Fairfield.  Now part of Jody's Silk Florist (it was formerly known as Fairfield Home and Garden), the Christmas Ice Caverns feature a walk-through animated Christmas display that has been a family classic for decades.  Click here to see photos and read all about one of our favorite family spots during the holidays. You can also see Santa at the ice caverns on certain days of the week!

The Christmas Ice Caverns from The Jersey Momma  - Fairfield, NJ
Making wishes in the fountains at Christmas Ice Caverns - Fairfield, NJ

2.  Gingerbread Wonderland (Frelinghuysen Arboretum) - Morristown, NJ

Gingerbread Wonderland is always fun to see (and fun to participate in, if you're creative!) at the Frelinghuysen Arboretum. View dozens of hand-made, decorated gingerbread houses and displays while supporting the arboretum with your small admission fee.  Certain weekends there is even a craft fair to accompany the display.  Click here for photos and a walk-through of past events.

Gingerbread Wonderland - Frelinghuysen Arboretum:  artist unknown (sorry!)

3.  Santa's Fly-In at Solberg Airport - Readington, NJ

This event is completely free (but there are added fees for food and other activities if you wish to participate in them).  You'll feel just like Buddy the Elf as you watch Santa fly in at the Solberg Airport (where the NJ Festival of Ballooning is held).  Even adults get giddy at the sight of Santa in his little yellow plane (It's Santa!  I know him!).  Visit their Facebook page for more information, dates and photos of Santa's Fly-In.

Santa's Fly-In Solberg Airport, Readington (photo property of Solberg Airport website)

4.  Moostletoe at the Mayo Center for Performing Arts - Morristown, NJ

I am a huge supporter of the Mayo Center.  It's such a nice little theater for New Jersey residents, and they have some wonderful shows throughout the year.  I particularly love their shows for kids, and we have seen many!  Moostletoe is a fun Christmas show for kids, all about a moose who wants to fly.  It's a great diversion from the typical Nutcracker shows around this time of year, or if your child is not quite ready for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular.  Click here to read a review of the show and see if it's right for your child.

Moostletoe at the Mayo Arts Center - Morristown, NJ

5.  Hershey Sweet Lights and Christmas Candy Lane - Hershey, PA

If you're willing to take a ride or even spend the night, Hershey's Christmas events are truly memorable and fun. Hershey Sweet Lights is a fantastic drive-through, animated light display (one of the best I've ever seen) and Christmas Candy Lane is what Hershey Park offers during the holiday season.  You'd be surprised how many rides you can still go on in the winter time!  Click here to read about Hershey Sweet Lights and Chocolate World during the holidays.  Click here to read about Christmas Candy Lane at Hershey Park.

Hershey Sweet Lights - Hershey, PA
Christmas Candy Lane at Hershey Park - Hershey, PA
Life-size candy house at Hershey's Chocolate World - Hershey, PA

For more fun Christmas attractions in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, scroll down!

For more ideas on local travel, or other holiday related day trips, check out my travel links page (located in the tabs on my home site).

Other fun travel places to note for the holiday season:

Clinton's Dickens Days

Hugs for Brady Holiday Light Show

The Candy Lane Holiday Game at Oasis Family Farm

4-H Festival of Trees in Somerset County

Christmas Festival at the Morristown Green

The Alien Who Stole Christmas - Planetarium Show at RVCC in Branchburg

The Polar Express Train Ride in Phillipsburg 

The Santa Claus Special (train ride) in Whippany

Turtle Back Zoo Holiday Light Spectacular

Lehigh Valley Zoo Winter Light Spectacular

Christmas at Storybook Land

Elf the Musical at State Theater, New Brunswick

Peddler's Village Christmas Festival (PA) 

A Very Furry Christmas at Sesame Place (PA)

A Longwood Gardens Christmas (PA)

Koziar's Christmas Village (PA)

Dutch Wonderland Christmas (PA)

Do you have a fun holiday attraction that you like to visit in or around New Jersey?  Let me know in the comments below!

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