Chattanooga’s Holiday Trail of Lights

The Holiday Trail of Lights features 12 major points of interest showcasing millions of twinkling lights at Chattanooga’s top holiday attractions. Visitors will also get to enjoy a varied array of festivals, holiday events, delicious holiday meals, Santa sightings, shopping, and live music and entertainment scattered throughout the city.

Twinkling Snowflakes along the Scenic Walnut Street Bridge in Downtown Chattanooga
Nov. 2020-Feb. 2021, lights turn on daily at dusk
View the thousands of twinkling lights in snowflake form along the Walnut Street Bridge, one of the longest pedestrian-only bridges in the world at 2,370 feet. The bridge connects downtown Chattanooga with the historic North Shore District and offers incredible views of the Tennessee River. Both ends of the bridge offer a variety of shopping, green spaces, dining, attractions, galleries and more.

EPB’s 2020 Holiday Windows
End of November 2020-Jan. 1, 2021
Explore EPB’s 2020 Holiday Windows, depicting the sights and sounds of the season. The displays feature unique and known holiday characters as well as Chattanooga scenes and landmarks. The Holiday Windows celebration continues a tradition that dates back to the World War II era. View the displays in the windows on the Broad and Market Street sides of EPB’s downtown headquarters building at 10 W. M.L. King Blvd. The EPB Holiday Windows are open through New Year’s Day.

Rock City’s Enchanted Garden of Lights
Nov. 20, 2020-Jan. 2, 2021, nightly (closed Christmas Eve night) 
Guests can decorate a gingerbread cookie in downtown Yule Town, experience the icy borealis lights of the Arctic Kingdom and explore the digital enchantment of the Magic Forest’s dancing trees. Visit Santa in his North Pole workshop and enjoy plenty of holiday treats including hot cocoa, kettle corn, homemade fudge and beer from Chattanooga Brewing. Tickets are sold ONLINE ONLY, and admission begins at 5 p.m. Leashed pets are welcome! As in years past, a portion of ticket proceeds from this event benefits the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Chattanooga. Enchanted Realms Map

Ruby Falls: Discover Wonder and Adventure
Discover wonder and adventure this holiday season at Ruby Falls! The splendor of Christmas comes alive with magical views of the Cumberland Plateau, holiday decorations on the Village Plaza, and nighttime twinkling city lights. See intricate cave formations created over millions of years along the cavern trail on a Cave Walk to the thundering waterfall or explore the beauty underground with hand-held lanterns illuminating the trail and waterfall on an after-hours Lantern Tour. Find perfect one of a kind gifts and delightful Christmas ornaments at the charming Village Gift Shop. Make Ruby Falls your holiday tradition.

Tennessee Aquarium’s Holidays Under the Peaks & Polar Express 3D in IMAX
Nov.-Dec., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Head inside under the Tennessee Aquarium’s lighted candy cane peaks for some underwater holiday fun. Whether watching for snowflakes or listening for sleigh bells, plenty of attention is paid to the sky during the holidays, but even underwater, there’s yuletide cheer aplenty waiting at the Tennessee Aquarium. In keeping with holiday tradition, The Polar Express 3D returns to the Tennessee Aquarium IMAX 3D Theater (check website for dates/times). 

Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum’s North Pole Limited & Holiday Excursions
Nov. 21-Dec. 27, 2020
Hop on board the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum’s North Pole Limited for an imaginary journey to the North Pole where a special guest will join the group. Along the way, you’ll be treated to lighted displays just outside the train car windows, refreshments, keepsakes, storytelling and occasional sing-a-longs. The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum’s other special holiday excursions offer even more fun for children and adults: Christmas Special Dinner TrainHiwassee Holiday Train, and New Year’s Eve Dinner Train.

Chattanooga Riverboat Company’s Holiday Season of Cheer
Nov. 26-Dec. 31
Float down the Tennessee River aboard the Chattanooga Riverboat Company’s Southern Belle for a truly unique holiday experience! View the Chattanooga skyline from the water and revel in the winter wonderland of holiday lights. Board a lunch or dinner cruise and have fun listening to live music, dancing, learning more about river navigation on a Pilot House tour, and indulging in holiday meals. 

Ice on the Landing at the Chattanooga Choo Choo
Nov. 13, 2020-Jan. 25, 2021, daily
Make memories on skates under twinkling lights and a crisp winter sky at Ice on the Landing. The outdoor ice skating rink in the historic Chattanooga Choo Choo’s Glenn Miller Gardens is surrounded by lanterns, fountains and the holiday grandeur of the Southside’s iconic landmark. The open air, warm drinks, magical lights and laughs with friends and family will create a fun holiday evening. The Ice on the Landing experience includes general skating time, special themes, holiday music, a rotating schedule to benefit local not-for-profits, sweet and savory crepes from Adelle’s, hot chocolate, cider and other toasty drinks. Step Outside named Ice on the Landing a Best Outdoor Rink in Tennessee. 

Holiday Magic at the Chattanooga Choo Choo
Nov. 13, 2020-Jan. 25, 2021 
As if the famous free-standing dome of the Chattanooga Choo Choo isn’t impressive enough, enter the festive lobby to see one of the city’s tallest Christmas trees at 28 feet. The lights and cheer throughout the property create a magical wonderland complete with ice skating at Ice on the Landing, holiday music, Station Street activities, special holiday treats at restaurants, shopping specials at retail shops like the Chattanooga Jewelry Store and pop up shops. While on site, enjoy comedic fun at the Comedy Catch or a Runaway Train Escape Experience. The grounds of the Chattanooga Choo Choo provide endless opportunities for holiday photos, including the soaring Christmas tree, the colorful caboose in Glen Miller Gardens and the dozens of light bulbs that make up the Chattanooga marquee sign.

Christmas Experience on the Bluff
Nov. 27, 2020 –Jan. 2, 2021
The historic Bluff View Art District, nestled on the bluff overlooking the beautiful Tennessee River, has transformed into a storybook holiday experience with thousands of twinkling lights for you and your family to enjoy. The magic takes you along stone-paved walkways throughout the district, into the Enchanted Forest, around nooks and crannies decked out in red and white seasonal delights, down Candy Cane Lane into the courtyard, on adventures with the little elves Rosemary, Basil, Cocoa, and Cookie, and to the Mezzo to see the grand Christmas tree.

Create Your Own Lights at the Creative Discovery Museum
Nov. 21, 2020-Feb. 21, 2021
Holiday lights come in all forms, and at the hands-on Creative Discovery Museum, kids can explore several kinds! Discover the twinkling lights on the RiverPlay boat. Visit the Barsamian Sculpture, a one-of-a-kind exhibit made especially for CDM. See how the use of light and science trick the eye into seeing the sculpture in animation. Learn how electricity enters your home to power on lights in Make It. Have your kids try their hand at a gingerbread house in one of multiple workshops throughout the holidays. Experience the wonderment of winter without the cold with the return of Creative Discovery Museum’s popular exhibit, Winter Wonders! From Nov. 21, 2020 to Feb. 21, 2021, children and families can explore a cozy cottage, “ice skate,” brave the blizzard pool noodle maze and more.

Holiday Lights at the Chattanooga Zoo
Dec. 11-12 & 18-19, 2020 5-8 p.m.
Come see the Chattanooga Zoo transformed into a magical winter wonderland where you can view hundreds of lights that weave through the habitats. Holiday Lights at the zoo offers guests the opportunity to see the Zoo transformed with lights for the season, visit the animals and watch them open their presents, and enjoy walking around in our winter wonderland! 

Wonder Wall at High Point Climbing & Fitness/Downtown
Nov. 15-Dec. 31, 2020
During the holidays, you typically view the beautiful lights while walking or driving. At High Point Climbing and Fitness downtown, experience the lights of Chattanooga in a whole new way by scaling an architectural wonder glowing with holiday colors – the transparent exterior climbing wall that hangs over Broad Street! Named “the country’s coolest gym” by Climbing Magazine, High Point is one of the nation’s most unique climbing facilities with 30,000 square feet of climbing inside and outside. BONUS: While you’re climbing the exterior wall, you can see the magical lights throughout the city!