The United States capital is full of winter whimsy during the holiday season! Visitors can marvel at the National Christmas Tree, wander through spectacular light displays at the National Zoo, ice skate by the waterfront and shop at local holiday markets. You can also travel back in time to George Washington’s Mount Vernon where Christmas past meets Christmas present at the first president’s estate. The ultimate Christmas adventure awaits in this winter wonderland in the district.
Virtual content due to COVID:
- Ford’s Theatre is partnering with WAMU 88.5 FM to present a one-hour radio play adaptation of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, featuring acclaimed Washington actor Craig Wallace as Ebenezer Scrooge. WAMU 88.5 FM will broadcast the play on December 25, 2020, at noon ET.
- The Washington Ballet is doing The Nutcracker Tea Party @Home. Join us for a 40-minute Nutcracker experience featuring guest performances, interactive activities, the story of The Washington Ballet’s unique production of The Nutcracker, and behind the scenes interviews, all from the comfort of your home.
In person activities:
The National Christmas Tree Lighting – Dec. 3This year, the National Christmas Tree Lighting will take place online, with holiday performances accompanying the ceremony. The site can be visited for free from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily throughout the holiday season; the tree itself is lit from 4:30-10 p.m. each day. The National Christmas Tree is DC’s claim to fame during the holidays, and for good reason. The gorgeous conifer lives in President’s Park on the White House Ellipse, where it’s surrounded by trees decorated with handmade ornaments from 56 U.S. states and territories.
CityCenterDC is completely decorated in lights for holiday shopping magic, including a Christmas tree centrepiece lit on November 28.
Tudor Place Historic House and Garden will be illuminated with an array of lights and is titled Merry & Bright: Tudor Place Garden at Night. Explore sparkling garden rooms, twinkling lawns and shimmering tunnels of light while enjoying hot chocolate or hot cider. Stroll through the 5 ½ acre garden and celebrate the season at Tudor Place.
Museum of the Bible is offering their Christmas Light Spectacular starting November 15, 2020. Intricate light sculptures, digital displays, music, and live performers come together in the Grand Hall in a one-of-a-kind retelling of the Christmas story. Crafted by the same New York-based creative team who brings the Macy’s windows to life every year, this unique, modern depiction of the Star of Bethlehem is sure to brighten the holiday season.
The 16th Annual Downtown Holiday Market, Washington, DC’s outdoor shopping village, kicked off the holiday season Friday, November 20. As the tradition continues, the beloved outdoor market will support small businesses, local artisans and entrepreneurs from across the region. Shoppers can enjoy the enhanced open-air street market in the heart of the District through December 23.