As a native Houstonian, and current resident, I am proud of the progress my city has made over the course of the past couple of months. We have shown strength, unity, and resilience since the horrific hurricane known as Hurricane Harvey. The Astros have led the charge in bringing additional joy and spirits back to the city. Now, we’re approaching the Holiday season. Let the Christmas lights, great cocktails, seasonal scents, and (possibly) cooler weather begin!
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Houston Winter Festivity Option 1: Zoo Lights (Houston Zoo)
I am ashamed to make this next statement… I, AmberLynn, have never been to Zoo Lights at the Houston Zoo. This event takes place from mid-November until mid-January. There are two types of tickets that can be bought, on Value and Prime nights. Either way, the tickets are less than $20. (The picture will lead you to the website.) What a deal. At zoo lights, individuals have the opportunity to explore the zoo while checking out their spectacular light shows and decoration. Though I have never been (formally) to the zoo lights, I have explored the zoo while they were decorating/setting up, and I can say their decor is nothing short of spectacular.
The scenery provides the perfect backdrops for spectacular pictures. Social media is so second nature to a lot of people. We’re all photographers in our own right. Though we are not professional, most people understand the importance of good lighting, great backdrops, and a good camera (mostly on the phone). I mean look at this shot above… how can you not love the lighting. If Christmas lights are something that excites your holiday spirit, then I would definitely recommend going. I’m even following my own advice and will be going this year. (Plus, I just love going to the zoo.)
Houston Winter Festivity Option 2: Kemah Boardwalk
Most native Houstonians have been to Kemah Boardwalk at some point. Before the thought comes to mind… yes, I have been. On SEVERAL occasions, even during different holidays. I enjoy Kemah so much because of the variety of activities and food that it provides. You have beautiful coastal views, it’s relatively close to Houston, and it’s far enough to be considered a quick getaway. PLUS… it has a super catchy theme song. I know it by heart… it’s kind of sad actually.
Additionally, Kemah will be open on Christmas Day. A lot of places will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but they will be going strong. This helps if you are looking for a holiday getaway. You can always stay onsite at the Boardwalk Inn. If you happen to be in town on December 9, they are having a Christmas Lights Boat Parade. It is for one day only, unfortunately. Either way, I think Kemah is a fun place to visit whether you are a couple, solo traveler, or are being accompanied by children. The fun never stops…come and get it! (I couldn’t help it LOL) There’s fun for people of ALL ages.
Houston Winter Festivity Option 3: The Nutcracker Ballet
Yes, I have added a ballet on here. There is even a great show production put on by the Houston Symphony. (Just thought I’d plug the symphony here.) As a child, when I would go see the Nutcracker Ballet, (yes, I’ve been several times. Yes, I enjoy it every time) I did not understand why there were no words. As I got older, I learned to appreciate the story being told through the music and the dancing. It’s definitely a show that can appeal and draw audiences of varying ages and diversities.
As far as the Houston Symphony, I’ve never been that fortunate to make it there. At least, if I did, I don’t remember going. I’ve seen the commercials and read the reviews, and it seems like a good time. If you’re musically inclined, this will appeal to you. Sometimes it’s nice to get away from the larger crowds in a theme park and enjoy a beautiful show. You may be thinking… how can you recommend somewhere you’ve never been? The answer is simple. Easy! Reviews, commercials, previews, and word of mouth go a long way. What may appeal to me may not appeal to you, and vice versa, so my job is to provide a variety of options.
Houston Winter Festivity Option 4: Moody Garden’s Festival of Lights
Moody Gardens is one of my favorite places in Texas to visit. Sadly enough, my first few times going were not until adulthood. As recently as a year or two ago. (Yes, I’ve been multiple times recently, and I’m not ashamed of it.) Anyway, Moody Gardens is another venue that appeals to multiple audiences. Like Kemah Boardwalk, they have their own hotel on the premises. They are blocks away from Galveston Beach, and it is surrounded by amazing food. (It’s sad that I’m thinking about food when I should be talking about winter festivities. However, I think that food plays a great role in all of this fun. We have to eat, right? Of course!)
Moody Gardens have everything you could want or need. They have a natural plant/animal exhibit in the rainforest pyramid, an aquarium pyramid, 3D and 4D theatres (including Spongebob Squarepants), and so much more. It may get a little windy and cool because it’s a beach, but the weather won’t be that bad. I can’t find a reason for someone NOT to visit Moody. Honestly, how can I sell it more than I already have? It’s the best of all worlds.
Other Various Houston Winter Festivities
A lot of events take place in Houston during the month of December. The Margarita Festival is coming up in a couple of weeks. Santa will take over all of the malls of Houston for photos. Some of the Houston neighborhood will become Christmas light trails and exhibits. There will be parades around the surrounding suburbs of Houston. There is no shortage of things to do around the holidays in Houston. If you are looking for a more intense theme park, driving for a couple of hours will get you to Six Flags Fiesta Texas, or Six Flags Over Texas. Take your pick.
What are some of your favorite things to do during the holidays? Where are your favorite places to go? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you haven’t already, you should check out my last post: The Gift of Travel: The Gift That Keeps on Giving. Happy Holidays!