Make your holiday season merry and bright, despite countless challenges, with our top 25+ Christmas events, attractions, and things to do for Christmas around Houston in 2020.

If you’re counting down the days until Christmas and are deep into your holiday playlists, you’ll probably want to mark your calendar for a few of these events—both live and virtual—and seasonal attractions in our picks for the top things to do for Christmas in Houston 2020.

With Christmas light displays to shopping markets, concerts and theatrical performances, socially distanced outdoor gatherings, skating rinks, and more, there’s something for everyone “for kids from 1 to 92”.

Of course, it’s also important for you to consider any health precautions before heading out. Our picks below may have certain requirements or restrictions at this moment and these things can change quickly, so be sure to contact your destination ahead of time to verify and with any questions or concerns. For those who aren’t venturing out, we’re also pleased to include a number of virtual holiday events this year to help keep your holidays bright and connected.

Note: Selections are not ranked, but are broken into two chronological lists—one featuring scheduled dated events and a second showcasing season-long attractions and activities. Events are listed in chronological order by start date and seasonal attractions by closing date.

Events & Things to Do for Christmas in Houston 2020

This holiday season, Houston is still hosting a number of festive events taking place on specific dates and weekends, along with virtual debuts that either livestream at specific times or drop and remain available for a set time. Scroll down below the photo to view season-long activities, attractions, and installations happening almost daily throughout the holiday season.

Zoo Lights | Photo courtesy of the Houston Zoo

Holiday Attractions, Activities & Things to Do for Christmas 2020 in Houston

Throughout this holiday season, Houstonians will flock to socially distanced light displays and other attractions and exhibits to fill their Christmas calendars. These attractions and activities run almost daily throughout the holiday season from mid November to early January, in most cases.

They are listed in chronological order of their final date of operation.

  • Home for the Holidays in Old Town Spring | Through Sunday, December 20 | No Cover – Pop into local businesses and restaurants around Old Town Spring every weekend leading up to Christmas for festive exhibits, holiday decor, visits to Santa’s house, unique gift ideas, and some Saturday live entertainment. The decor, shopping, and a general festive spirit can be enjoyed on the weekdays, as well. Hours vary
  • Hou-Ville at Bayou Place | Tuesday, December 1 through Wednesday, December 23, 2020 – Explore an immersive, Instagram-able experience that’s inspired in equal parts by Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Houston icons and landmarks, and the holidays themselves. Advance online reservations required. Tickets start at $30; $15 for ages 3 to 12; free for ages 2and under.
  • Holiday in the Gardens at Moody Gardens | Through Saturday, January 2, 2021 – Brighten up your holiday season at the Holiday in the Gardens including Festival of Lights, a mile-long trail of more than one million lights and illuminated scenes with views of Galveston Bay. For 2020, visitors can also embark on the Arctic Slide, take a holiday train ride, catch a 4-D theater presentation of the classic Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer television special, enjoy robust holiday meals, and more. Tickets start at $14. 6pm to 10pm.
  • Space Age Christmas Trees: World’s Biggest Mega-Show at the 1940 Air Terminal Museum | Through Sunday, January 3, 2021 – Boasting more than 100 vintage aluminum Christmas trees, 1940 Air Terminal Museum presents a special plus-sized 2020 offering of its annual display. This is likely the first time that trees from all of the major manufacturers have been seen together in one space. Also new this year is the interactive Mid-Century Modern Holiday Pad. $10; $4 for age 12 and under; free for ages 2 and under. Tickets include admission to the rest of the museum. Times vary.
  • Sugar Land Holiday Lights at Constellation Field | Through Sunday, January 3, 2021 – Head to the Sugar Land Skeeters’ home field for a stunning display of 2.5 million lights, with red and green lights lining the seating section, light tunnels, giant light displays, and more. Tickets are $16; $14 ages 12 and under, and for ages 65 and up. Most November and January nights are discounted slightly. Times vary
  • Galaxy Lights at Space Center Houston | Through Sunday, January 3, 2021 – The most interactive and technologically advanced light display in Texas returns to the Space Center Houston campus, with outdoor wonders, space-themed light installations, and a look at some real interstellar history that should captivate all ages. 6pm to 10pm.
  • City Lights at Avenida Houston | Through Sunday, January 3, 2021 | Some FREE – Take in the lighted sights along the plaza, scope out 28 elaborately decorated Christmas tree in Alley Theater’s Deck the Trees (appearing at the GRB this year only), and explore Discovery Green’s the sights and sounds for free (and The Ice at Discovery Green for a fee, see below). There’s also the option to spring $15 to experience Texas Winter Lights stretched across the rooftop Texas-shaped lazy river at Marriott Marquis Houston and take in its holiday treats and entertainment for an evening. 5pm to 10pm.
  • Holiday Light Sightseeing in Houston’s Most Decorated Neighborhoods | Through Sunday, January 3, 2021 (Approximately) – Pile in the car and cruise through River Oaks, Woodland Heights, Prestonwood Forest, Downtown, and Houston’s other ‘hoods known for extravagant, clever, and heartwarming holiday light displays. Dates will vary but most lights start coming down or going dark after New Year’s Eve weekend.
  • Zoo Lights at Houston Zoo | Through Sunday, January 10, 2021 – Stroll through the Houston Zoo with hot chocolate in hand while admiring glimmering displays made up of more than two million Christmas lights at this annual must-see holiday destination. Tickets range from $12.95 to $25.65; free for ages 1 and under. Tickets must be purchased online in advance. 5:30pm to 10:30pm daily; last entry 9:30pm.
  • The Ice at Discovery Green | Through Sunday, January 31, 2021 – Though it’s more wintery than Christmasy, Discovery Green’s beloved outdoor skating rink, The Ice at Discovery Green, returns as a defining staple of Houston’s holiday season. Check out the calendar for themed skate nights on select dates (including discounted $8 skating on select Monday evenings). Skating lasts throughout January. Advance online tickets required. $15. Times vary.
Sugar Land Holiday Lights at Constellation Field | Photo courtesy of Constellation Field

Social Distancing & COVID-19

Businesses in Houston have opened under modified protocols, following guidelines administered by local health officials, the State of Texas and CDC. At this time, guidance from experts urges people to continue wearing face masks when in public spaces, practice social distancing of at least six feet, limit your touching of surfaces and frequently use hand sanitizer or soap and water to keep your hands clean.

Before heading out, take time to familiarize with your destination’s requirements or restrictions at this moment, and be sure to contact them ahead of time with any questions or concerns.

Find More Things to Do in Houston All Year Long

You can find more fun in our interactive event calendar and 365 Weekend Guides.

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