‘Tis the season, and while the temps are dropping, the lights, events, and holiday cheer is bubbling up in Salt Lake. Whether you’re looking for family fun, holiday treats, unique gift shopping, or just beautiful holiday lights and displays, Salt Lake has something in store.
For Gift Shoppers & Holiday Market Fans
This is the Place Heritage Park
2601 Sunnyside Ave., Salt Lake
Nov. 29-Dec. 2, 11 am-8 pm
Admission is free to this annual Christmas market at This Is the Place Heritage Park. The historic park transforms for the season with costumes, decorations, treats, sweets, and arts and crafts of all kinds available for purchase. The market is open from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. for one weekend only as locals and visitors alike get into the spirit of the holiday season. Kid-friendly activities include daily parades, a live nativity, meeting St. Nikolaus, and more.
Draper Holiday Market 2023
Draper Park North Pavilion
12501 S 1300 E, Draper
Dec. 8, 5-8 pm
Dec. 9, 12-8 pm
Looking for a unique holiday shopping experience paired with some free hot chocolate and marshmallow roasting? Look no further than the Draper Holiday Market taking place the second weekend in December on Friday and Saturday. Prepare to bundle up and get festive, checking out Santa and Mrs. Claus alongside getting those one-of-a-kind holiday gifts. The market is free to attend and will have a variety of food trucks offering food for purchase. An experience great for the whole family!
UMFA Holiday Market 2023
Utah Museum of Fine Arts
410 Campus Center Dr., Salt Lake
Dec. 2 and 3, 9 am-5 pm
Come support local artists and the Utah Museum of Fine Arts at this festive shopping event. Take in the merry atmosphere, enjoy some live music, and shop for handmade creations. Everything from ceramics, paintings, jewelry, candles, prints, artisan chocolates, woodworking, soaps, and more. Admission and parking are both free exclusively for this holiday market on December 2nd and 3rd. While you're there, go stroll some of the museums galleries and current exhibits (separate entrance fee required).
50 South Main Street
Nov. 21-Dec. 31
If your spouse is too nosy and online shopping isn’t a viable option, City Creek Center in downtown Salt Lake City is open for holiday shopping. The indoor/outdoor mall will feature beautiful holiday décor throughout the space November 21-December 31, an oversized Christmas tree, live music performances, spots for festive selfies, and the beloved annual Macy’s candy window displays. The candied displays carry on as a tradition dating back to 1970, when ZCMI occupied the space that is now Macy’s City Creek. The annual tradition continues at the west exterior windows of Macy’s this year. The Giving Machines, large vending machines that instead of giving out food or treats allow you to purchase important items to donate to charities, are located in front of the Food Court.
For the Twinkle Light Fanatics
Lightwalk at the Tracy Aviary
589 E 1300 S Salt Lake
Nov. 24-Dec. 23, 5 pm-9 pm
Back for its second year, stroll through eight acres of gleaming light displays at Tracy Aviary’s Lightwalk. Enjoy lighted tunnels, a colorful holiday maze, and even a life-size gingerbread house with Santa. Sip some holiday beverages, savor some tasty treats, and meander through the dazzling displays. Although you won’t spot any birds (they’ll be sleeping), you may get lucky and spot a festive Ollie the Owl Mascot wandering the grounds. Tickets available for purchase on their website.
Christmas Lights at Temple Square
50 N West Temple
After Thanksgiving - New Year’s Day
3:30 pm-10 pm
Despite the ongoing renovation on Temple Square, the renowned Christmas lights display is open to the public with some modifications due to the construction areas. From the day after Thanksgiving to New Year's Day, the grounds are decorated beautifully and are open to the public for free every night until 10 pm. In addition, a nativity will be projected on the ceiling of the Salt Lake Tabernacle every 10 minutes from 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm. There will also be daily Christmas concerts on Temple Square and at nearby locations, as well as a free concert with the world-renowned Tabernacle Choir. Combine a visit with a trip to City Creek across the street, and enjoy a full evening of holiday festivity.
Utah's Hogle Zoo
2600 Sunnyside Ave. (840 S)
Dec. 6-30, 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Hogle Zoo continues to put on their 17th annual lighting display with hundreds of illuminated displays and a 135-foot tunnel of lights. From Dec. 6-30 from 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm (excluding holidays), you can roam the zoo at night while listening for a possible lion roar in the distance. You can also check out review nights on Nov. 24-26 for cheaper admission ($8). Or try a sensory-friendly evening with adjustments to sounds and flashing lights at their Neurodiversity Celebration on Dec. 27th. Treats and drinks are available, including specialty hot chocolate and s'mores. This event does require tickets, which you can purchase online.
This is the Place Heritage Park
2601 Sunnyside Ave., Salt Lake
Dec. 7-23 (Monday-Saturday), 5 pm-9 pm
Step back in time at This Is the Place Heritage Park. Candlelight, glowing fires, and old-timey pioneer cabins and cottages—it’s a different kind of Christmas light experience, and a nice break from the hectic pace of the holidays. You can make crafts, hear carolers, see a live nativity, and meet Father Christmas while you explore the village. Tickets are available for purchase on their website from $7.95 - $9.95.
3900 N. Garden Dr., Lehi
Nov. 16-Jan. 6 (Mon.-Sat.)
4:30 pm-9 pm
One of the most unique and fun displays in this list is Luminaria. Set at the incredible Ashton Gardens at Thanksgiving Point, Luminaria incorporates music, a walk through the garden, a nativity scene, a 120-foot Christmas tree on top of a 40-foot hill, and 6,500 programmable "luminaries" which each act as a pixel to create moving images for a holiday-oriented show. Purchase tickets through their website at ThanksgivingPoint.org. Also, new this year, Luminaria will have exchangeable tickets available for purchase to offer more flexibility to change your dates for whatever reason!
1500 E 1735 S, Salt Lake
5400 S 3200 W, Taylorsville
There are two “Christmas Streets” in Salt Lake, one in Sugar House and one in Taylorsville. Both streets are neighborly cooperatives of folks who apparently really love Christmas: each house on each respective Christmas Street is fully decked out in lights and decorations for a cumulatively dazzling display—and in Taylorsville, each house recreates a part of the poem Twas the Night Before Christmas. You can either drive (recommendation to turn off your headlights) or walk through the neighborhoods.
Tree of Life
Draper City Park
12500 S 1300 E, Draper
(tree lighting ceremony Nov. 27)
Every year, the trees and bridges in Draper City Park come to life with holiday light—over 65,000 lights, to be specific. Don’t miss the huge, glowing willow tree in the middle of the park (though, honestly, it would be hard to miss). The lights come on at dusk and turn off at midnight. If you’d like to attend the tree lighting ceremony, you can do so at 6 pm on Nov. 27th. They’ll have pony rides, marshmallow roasting, hot chocolate, cookies, and Santa!