Get in the Holiday Spirit by Visiting These Amazing Christmas Trees and Lights in the West
The tallest trees and most magical events in each Western state.
Sure, everyone talks about the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, but for those of us out West there are quite a few other tree lighting and holiday festivals that are worthy of our attention. To spread a little extra holiday cheer, we set out to find the biggest, brightest, and most magical celebrations in each Western state.
It’s likely that the Christmas tree you purchase for your home measures about 7 feet high—but one of these trees is a whopping 90 feet tall! Visit one of these spots during the season to see it for yourself.
Alaska: Holiday Lights in Downtown Anchorage in Anchorage, Alaska
While the tree lighting ceremony in downtown Anchorage already happened, you can still head to the area to take in all the twinkling lights. The Anchorage of City Lights project has light displays at multiple businesses, parks, and public places.
Arizona: Outlets North Phoenix in Phoenix, Arizona
Over the past 22 years, Outlets North Phoenix has been home to the tallest fresh-cut Christmas tree in the state. Another fun fact? Way back when, a rising star named Taylor Swift brought her guitar onto the stage during the 2006 tree lighting ceremony.
Northern California: Napa Tree Lighting in Napa, California
Visit downtown Napa for a look at its 30-foot Christmas tree and its other festive decorations. And there are so many other holiday events and activities at the various wineries, restaurants, and resorts nearby.
Southern California: Fashion Island in Newport Beach, California
Shop for gifts and then enjoy the holiday displays at Fashion Island. The shopping center’s 50 Nights of Coastal Lights brings a show every night where visitors can watch the 90-foot tree come to life with a snowfall, music, and light display.
Colorado: Ski Tree in Telluride, Colorado
Tucked away in a box canyon in the San Juan Mountains, Telluride is known as one of the world’s best ski resorts, and it has a very unusual Christmas tree that’s a must-see. True to the unique spirit of Telluride, the Ski Tree isn’t your classic fir or pine; it’s actually made from old, donated skis.
Hawaii: Honolulu City Lights in Honolulu, Hawaii
From now until December 29, you can marvel at the Honolulu City Lights display while enjoying eats from food vendors and visiting Santa (he’s there every night until December 24).
Idaho: Scentsy Commons Point of Lights Event in Meridian, Idaho
Since 2017, the Scentsy headquarters in Meridian, Idaho, have turned into a winter wonderland. Complete with 900,000 lights (including a light tunnel!) and a 75-foot-tall Christmas tree, it’s a can’t-miss experience. This year, the free event ran from December 11 to 13.
Montana: Christmas Stroll in Butte, Montana
While Uptown Butte’s Christmas Stroll and lighting ceremony has already happened, you can still visit the area and take in the lights and decorations this season.
Nevada: Holiday Cactus Garden Lights in Henderson, Nevada
While this isn’t technically a tree lighting ceremony, it’s an iconic representation of Christmas in Nevada. For the past 30 years, the state’s largest botanical cactus garden has been set aglow by more than a million holiday lights. It’s currently open to the public and will close down on New Year’s Eve.
New Mexico: Luminarias on the Plaza in Socorro, New Mexico
Say hello to Santa, take a hayride, and stroll through the luminaria-lined path in Socorro’s Historic Plaza to look at arts and crafts during this annual event. All of this, including the annual tree lighting ceremony, is scheduled for Saturday, December 9.
Oregon: The Grotto Christmas Festival of Lights in Portland, Oregon
More than two million lights are on display at The Grotto from Friday, November 24 to Friday, December 30.
Utah: Outlets of Traverse Mountain in Lehi, Utah
If you want to see the tallest fresh-cut Christmas tree in Utah and shop ‘til you drop, head over to the Outlets of Traverse Mountain. While there, you can also visit Santa and walk through the Grand Gingerbread Village, which is full of gingerbread-inspired houses and features a 30-foot-tall gingerbread tower.
Washington: Village of Lights in Leavenworth, Washington
You’ll find so much more than a Christmas tree in Leavenworth, a German mountain town that boasts the Nutcracker Museum. From Friday, November 24 to Sunday, December 24, it transforms into Christmastown. Also known as the Village of Lights, Leavenworth will host live entertainment, photos with Santa, a gingerbread expo, and much more during the holiday season.
Wyoming: Town Square in Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Visit the heart of Jackson Hole to view the holiday lights. From December 16-24 at 5-7 p.m., Santa will be there for meet-and-greets with seasonal treats.