2023 Michigan Christmas 27 Things to Do - Ultimate Guide to Events! Magical Michigan Christmas Places To Visit and Holiday Events This Season | Santa, Holiday Parades, Reindeer, Frankenmuth Christmas Store, Steam Trains & Lights Galore!
27 Magical Michigan Christmas Places To Visit, Best Things to Do and Holiday Events This Season | See Santa, Reindeer, Frankenmuth Christmas Store, Steam Trains & Lights Galore! Updated + MAP!
By: Sherry Trautman | Travel-Mi.com | Last Updated: November 6, 2023
Are you wondering what there is to do for Christmas in Michigan? or "Where should I go for Christmas in Michigan?"
It's time to get in the holiday spirit! We've got tons of great Michigan Christmas experiences and fun Michigan Christmas things to do for couples and families! Chris and I are constantly traveling Michigan and have attended many of these events/Christmas activities ourselves so we highly recommend them to you and your family.
So, grab your mittens as we embark on sleigh rides, visits with Santa, rides on steam trains, visiting quaint Christmas villages, pet adorable reindeer, see Michigan Christmas lights and explore the World's Largest Christmas store!
Michigan Christmas: Best Holiday Events, Things to Do, Sleigh Rides, Drive Through Lights, Christmas Villages to Visit!
What is the most Christmassy town in Michigan?
Well, I'd have to say Frankenmuth Michigan! This lovely town, located on the east side of the state, has horse drawn carriages, lovely Cass river views and TONS of incredible shopping experiences! You can shop in the Bavarian Inn, along S. Main Street and of course, the River Place Shops.
You'll find buy fudge, popcorn, wine, cherries, cheese, pet gifts, apparel and so much more at lovely boutiques! Of course, you must visit Bronner's Christmas Wonderland, the largest Christmas store in the world! Frankenmuth is one of my favorite Michigan Christmas towns!
Map of Top Michigan Christmas Events and FUN Things to do!
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27 Magical Michigan Christmas Places To Visit, Michigan Holiday Events, and Fun Christmas Things to Do!
1. Visit Henry Ford's Greenfield Village: Holiday Nights is a Wonderful Michigan Christmas Event | Things To Do For Families | Dearborn Michigan
Henry Ford's Greenfield Village Holiday Nights
Where: Greenfield Village, 20900 Oakwood Blvd, Dearborn, Michigan
WOW! Chris and I absolutely love visiting Henry Ford's Greenfield Village during Holiday Nights each December! This Michigan holiday festival is a wonderful way to get into the Christmas mood! It's a great couples date night event and it's also a perfect family holiday event.
Watch Fresh Donuts Being Made, See Cute Reindeer, Horse Drawn Carriages and FUN at Henry Ford Greenfield Village During Holiday Nights
Visit with Santa, sip sweet hot chocolate or indulge in soft, freshly made donuts (see them freshly made before your eyes)!
Explore several buildings including a lovely church with stained glass windows, learn more about Webster's dictionary and see what you could have purchased in a general store in the 1900's!
Click the arrow above to hear the incredible live Christmas caroling at Greenfield Village Holiday Nights. Grab a ride in these quaint horse drawn carriages!
We were so surprised to see Santa's reindeer; This is mama and her 18 month old fuzzy reindeer daughter! What a lovely way to celebrate Michigan Christmas!
Learn More: Greenfield Village Holiday Nights
2. Visit Crossroads Village and Ride the Huckleberry Railroad Steam Train for a True Hallmark Town Michigan Christmas | Perfect for Couples and Families! | Flint Michigan
Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad is so festive this Michigan Christmas!
Where: Crossroads Village 6140 N Bray Rd, Flint, MI 48505
Crossroads Village is an incredible living history museum located in Genesee County, Michigan, near Flint. Ride the Huckleberry railroad steam train (perfect event and experience for kids!), pop into historic shops and explore the village.
We absolutely love visiting Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad each winter season. It's a fantastic way to get into the Christmas Spirit! The buildings are all decorated for Christmas, making it a lovely Hallmark Town to visit this Christmas.
You can wander Crossroads village while munching on warm crunch almonds, enjoy listening to the sounds of Christmas carols and peeking into historic buildings along the way.
Be sure to book your tickets ahead of time so you can ride the Huckleberry steam train and enjoy a yummy buffet dinner.
3. Visit Bronner's CHRISTmas Wonderland - The Best Michigan Christmas Store | Christmas Shopping | Frankenmuth Michigan!
Bronner's Christmas Wonderland - Frankenmuth Michigan. Michigan's Christmas Village
Did you know that Bronner's, Frankenmuth Michigan's Christmas Store, is the largest Christmas store in the world?
- The retail space is 2.2 acres which is 1.7 football fields!
- Their average daily electricity bill is $1,250.00!!!
- Bronner's Christmas Wonderland sells so much lights that if you spread them all out, end to end, the lights would span about 530 miles! That's a lot of twinkle power!
Bronner's Christmas Wonderland - Frankenmuth Michigan. Michigan's Christmas Village
Where: 25 Christmas Ln, Frankenmuth, MI 48734
Bronners (the Frankenmuth Christmas Store) is open year round! We recommend spending at least two hours to explore the vast store as Bronners Christmas Wonderland has every ornament, decoration and lights you could ever wish for!
Downtown Frankenmuth Michigan is all decked out at Christmas, earning it's place in our list of favorite Michigan Christmas towns to visit. There are so many things to do!
4. Visit Downtown Market in Grand Rapids | Shopping, Classes, Grocery Items, Gifts | Southwest Michigan
Grand Rapids Downtown Market offers a massive selection of food and gifts
Where: 435 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
What is it? Downtown Market in Grand Rapids is bustling market with a collective of butchers, bakers, fishmongers, fantastic cuisines, grocery items, and specialty food products.
Keep an eye out for Christmas workshops (example: learn how to create "wow factor" Christmas cocktails!), classes and fun at the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids! Explore food stalls, grab great gift ideas and feel the cheer at every turn!
Grand Rapids Downtown Market: Could you pass up these cupcakes? Me Neither!
You'll find spices, oils, treats, seafood, vegetables, meats and fun galore! It's a breathtaking place to purchase gifts, meals or grab gift cards!
Pets are not permitted.
5. Frederik Meijer Gardens | See the Magical Christmas Trees and Handmade City Replicas | Family Friendly Christmas & Holiday Traditions | Grand Rapids Michigan | Southwest Michigan
Frederik Meijer Gardens - Michigan Christmas. I love the festive atmosphere with these decorated trees!
Where: Frederik Meijer Gardens, 1000 E Beltline Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525. Located in Southwest Michigan
When: November 21, 2023 through January 7, 2024
- Enjoy over 350,000 colorful lights, visit with Santa, see the rooftop reindeer and check out dozens of beautifully decorated international trees and displays at Frederik Meijer Gardens by University of Michigan Health-West this Christmas!
Plus, explore the glassed in area near the Christmas trees to see dozens of handmade replicas of buildings in Grand Rapids.
And the best part?
All of the structures are made from materials found in nature, so take plenty of time to try and spot acorns, leaves, roots and bark used to make the incredibly intricate buildings!
Sherry and Chris at Frederik Meijer Gardens - Michigan Christmas
As you can see by our cheesy grins, we are pretty happy here! Humm, OR maybe Chris is grimacing from me squishing him....no, definitely grins, he loves me! lol!
6. Best Places to See Michigan Christmas Lights, Light Displays and Michigan Drive Through Christmas Lights!
If you are wondering, "Where Can I Go See Christmas Lights in Michigan?" Well...
7. See The Big Bright Light Show in Rochester Michigan | Drive Through Christmas Lights Event | Southeast Michigan | Metro Detroit
Michigan Christmas Lights! See the lights in Downtown Rochester
Where: Main Street, Rochester Michigan
When: November 20 - January 21, 2024. Lights are on 5 pm - Midnight.
Speaking of Christmas Lights, you've got to see the incredible Rochester Michigan Christmas Lights this year!
What is the Rochester Light Show? The buildings in Downtown Rochester Michigan are draped with thousands of twinkling lights! You can drive your car down Main Street to enjoy the lights from the warmth of your vehicle or park, walk, and see the lights up close!
Where is the Rochester light show? Right in downtown Rochester along S. Main Street! The Big Bright Light Show is absolutely incredible!
And the Best Part?
It's free! Either drive or walk though the downtown area!
What time do the Christmas lights come on in Rochester Mi? November through the end of January!
8. The Fifth Third Ball Park | Fantastic Drive Thru Christmas Lite Show | Family Friendly Christmas Event | Grand Rapids Michigan | Southwest Michigan
Where: 4500 W River Dr NE, Comstock Park, MI 49321
When: November 22, 2023–December 31, 2023
If you really want to get into the Christmas spirit, you will love driving through Fifth Third Ball Park's fantastic lighted display! Bring along travel mugs of hot cocoa for a lovely Christmas feel! There is a fee.
9. Wayne County Lightfest in Hines Park | Best Drive Thru Christmas Lights in Southeast Michigan | Metro Detroit
Where: 7651 N Merriman Rd, Westland, MI 48185. The Lightfest entrance is on Merriman Road between Ann Arbor Trail and Warren Avenue, 2 1/2 miles south of I-96.
Are you ready to be wowed by incredible light displays? Southeast Michigan Wayne County Lightfest in Hines Park is magical four-mile stretch with 50 animated themed displays and more than 100,000 lights to impress even the biggest Scrooge!
What time is the Hines Park light show? The Wayne County Lightfest will be open Wednesday - Sunday from Thursday, November 16, 2023 until Sunday, December 24, 2023 from 6:00 PM - 10:00 PM. The Lightfest will be closed Monday and Tuesday evenings.
How much does it cost to see the lights at Hines Park? The fee is $5 cash per car.
How long does it take to drive through Wayne County Lightfest? It takes about 25 minutes to drive through these lovely Christmas lights.
10. Blake's Holiday Extravaganza | Family Friendly Event with Shopping and Photos with Santa | Southeast Michigan
Where: Blake's Holiday Extravaganza: Blake’s Orchard & Cider Mill located at 17985 Armada Center Road, Armada MI.
When: November 18, 2023 & November 19, 2023 + November 24, 2023 - November 26, 2023 | 10AM – 5PM.
🎅 Tis the season to be jolly at Blake’s Holiday Extravaganza! 🎅 Start your Christmas season off right with holiday magic! Enjoy shopping, festive cheer, and twinkling lights. Shop from local artisans, pick out the perfect Christmas tree, pick put fresh evergreen wreaths, porch pots, and Christmas decor for your home.
Visit the original farmhouse for a photo with Santa, warm igloo dining, and hot drinks.
Enjoy Blake’s annual tree lighting in Orchard Square on November 18, 2023 at 6:00 pm, with the sounds of carolers and live music. There will be free children’s crafts and face painting. Fun for the whole family!
11. Tour Meadow Brook Hall- Holiday Walk and Winter Wonder Lights | Christmas Mansion Tour | Perfect Date Night or Girl's Night Out | Rochester Michigan
Where: 350 Estate Drive, Rochester, Michigan
Chris and I LOVE LOVE touring Meadow Brook Hall during the day AND night! We highly recommend it!!
What to Expect:
- During the afternoon, embark on an indoor one hour "Holiday Walk" to see Santa (and maybe his elves?). Tour the inside of the historic mansion that is all decked out with incredible Christmas decor! Meadow Brook hall boasts 50 sparkling Christmas trees, several roaring fireplaces, a 10-foot tall Poinsettia tree created by 150 live plants, dazzling trimmings, and lights galore!
- Then at night, return for their "Winter Wonder Lights" which is an outdoor walk with Christmas music, seasonal treats and holiday magic in celebration of Christmas. AND I hear you can buy glow-in-the-dark cotton candy and hot cocoa?! How fun is that?
12. Be WOWED By Michigan's Official Christmas Tree | Lansing Michigan State Capitol
Birdeye view of the HUGE Lansing Capitol Christmas Tree!
Get a head start on your holiday cheer! The Lansing State Capitol tree is placed on the front lawn about two months before Christmas! It's absolutely magical at night so be sure to check it out! We took this photo during a tour of the Lansing State Capitol.
The 2023 Christmas tree is a 60-foot Christmas tree donated by Victor Ruppert of Onaway in memory of his late wife.
While you are there, tour the Lansing State Capitol, it's absolutely magical! Here are more things to do in Lansing, too!
13. Silver Bells in the City | Lansing State Capitol | Shopping, Christmas Lighted Parade, Drone Light Show, Fireworks | Event Schedule
Where: Downtown Lansing Michigan State Capitol
When: Friday, November 17, 2023 from 5:00 pm -9:00 pm
If you want to get into the holiday spirit, be sure to visit Lansing for the super popular Silver Bells in the City holiday event!
Here is the calendar of events:
Silver Bells Village: Shop from 5:00 pm until 9:00 pm from vendors across Michigan. The Silver Bells Village is located at the 100 block of E. Allegan Street between S. Washington
Square and Grand Ave. See our map at the top of this page.
26th Annual Electric Light Parade: Beginning at 6 PM, wave to Santa and enjoy brilliantly lit floats and high stepping marching bands as they begin at the
corner of Lenawee Street and South Washington Square. See our map at the top of this page.
Tree Lighting and Community Sing with Grace West: Gather by the 60 foot Michigan State Capitol Christmas
Tree after the parade for the
tree lighting and community sing.
Firefly Drone Light Show: After Grace West’s performance, cast your eyes to the sky as 200 drones perform
a breathtaking Firefly Drone Light Show that is in time to lively Christmas music. Drones will be in the Capitol area.
Fireworks: Get ready to be wowed by splashes of colorful fireworks over the Capitol. Don't forget to ooohhh and ahhh!
Where to Park: The Allegan Parking Ramp is the closest parking lot to the action
14. 8 Best Michigan Christmas Towns and Hallmark Towns to Visit This Holiday Season!
Every Christmas, Chris and I love visiting as many Michigan Christmas Towns as we can to immerse in the holiday spirit! There's nothing like the sight of sparkling lights, storefronts decorated for Christmas, and shops filled with colorful gifts to get into the Christmas spirit!
15. Ride the 9 Most Festive Michigan Christmas Trains This Holiday Season! (The Polar Express Is a Must-Do!)
Chris and I absolutely love embarking on Michigan Christmas train adventures each holiday season! It's so fun singing Christmas carols as the powerful steam train chugs along the tracks!
Grab our guide to the 9 Best Michigan Christmas Trains!
- Oh, and one of our favorite Michigan Christmas trains is the North Pole Express Train! The Polar Express stops at the Village of Ashley's Country Christmas! Beginning in November, the village is transformed into an old fashioned Country Christmas. It is so fun to wander the streets while seeing 1940's Christmas decorations. Enjoy a horse drawn wagon ride, see street entertainment and grab a meal at their several food stops along the way. Plus you can shop to find the perfect handmade gifts, home decor and Christmas souvenirs!
Best Michigan Christmas Trains
16. HUGE LIST of Michigan Christmas Events, Christmas Lights, Things To Do!
Need Awesome Michigan Themed Christmas Gifts?
Best Michigan Cutting Boards!
Best Michigan Gift Baskets
Everyone loves Michigan Made Gifts!!
17. Try Michigan Dog Sledding! What a Great Michigan Winter Activity and Christmas Gift!
If you are looking for an extreme Michigan winter activity, you need to try dog sledding! Depending on the company, you can either drive the team or go for a ride. Makes a great Christmas gift!
Check out our detailed map and places to experience exhilarating dog sledding in Michigan!
18. Go on a Michigan Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride! (Makes a Great Christmas Gift, too) | Perfect Date Night or Family Friendly Outdoor Activity This Winter!
Michigan horse-drawn carriage rides are great things to do in winter! Generally available December through March (depending on the weather), gather your family and loved ones for horse-drawn sleigh rides across beautiful snowy terrain!
See our map and details of the best horse drawn sleigh rides in Michigan!
19. Holiday Magic Spectacular | A Walk Through Holiday Experience with 1,100 Christmas Trees, Nutcrackers, SANTA! | Kids Christmas Event
Where: Holiday Magic Spectacular | Lakeside Mall, 14000 Lakeside Circle, Sterling Heights, MI 48313
When: Select days beginning December 9, 2023-December 23, 2023! Buy your Holiday Magic Spectacular tickets early!
You Can See:
- Over 1,100 Christmas Trees
- Giant Candy Canes
- Thousands of sparkling lights
- Hundreds of Nutcrackers
- A Walk In Snow Globe
- Santa’s Workshop and of course, SANTA!
20. See Live Reindeer in Michigan! | Reindeer Farms are a Great Michigan Christmas Activity! | Family Friendly
So guys, you absolutely MUST visit at least one Michigan reindeer farm this Christmas season! Many farms offer events where you can go on a sleigh ride, meet Santa and enjoy hot chocolate!
21. Visit Detroit Zoo's Wild Lights! | Twinkling Lights at the Zoo! | Detroit Michigan | Southeast Michigan Christmas Event
Detroit Zoo: Walk along the wild side at Detroit Zoo's Wild Lights!
When: November 24-26, 2023; December 1-3, 2023; December 8-10, 2023;
December 13-23, 2023; December 26-31, January 2-7, 2023.
The Zoo is even more magical during the winter with sparkly sights and Christmas entertainment!
There is fun and activities for zoo goers of all ages. See millions of LED lights twinkling in the trees, buildings, lighted tunnel, and animal figures throughout the Zoo.
Stroll through the Enchanted Trail, an immersive forest of lights and be wowed by the Polar Express 4D Theater!
22. Make Your Christmas Sparkle with These Holiday Parades (Christmas Parade and Parade of Lights!)
- Christmas In Ida Festival and Parade of Lights - Located in the Downtown District in Ida, MI, (Southeast Michigan) come out for the 41st Annual Christmas in Ida Festival and Parade of Lights on December 1 - 2, 2023. The Granddaddy of light parades features two hours of illuminated and animated floats! Enjoy hearing stories read by Ms. Claus and see Santa's Zoo! Check out ice sculpting, holiday art, concerts, fireworks and more! Address: 2953 Lewis Avenue, Ida, MI 48140
- Manistee's Victorian Sleighbell Parade & Old Christmas Weekend in Southwest Michigan. November 30-December 3, 2023. Enjoy a Victorian Sleighbell Parade with horse-drawn entries, bagpipers, reindeer and carolers elegantly dressed in Victorian attire! See the draft horses pulling a 30-foot Christmas tree down River Street followed by luminaries, caroling and the lighting of the tree! The 34th annual Victorian Sleighbell Parade is at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 2, 2023.
23. Shop, Sip Hot Chocolate at Incredible Michigan Christmas Markets!
Each Christmas, Chris and I look forward to bundling up warm and shopping at festive Michigan Christmas Markets all across the state. It's a great way to shop local while finding unique handmade treats, ornaments, gifts, chocolates while having so much fun!
Grab our Guide to the Top 20+ Michigan Christmas Markets!
24. Holiday Stroll at Olde World Canterbury Village | Lake Orion Michigan | Christmas Lights, Caroling | Family Christmas Event-Kid Friendly! | Southeast Michigan
What to get outside and move this holiday season? Walk through the Christmas lights during the Holiday Stroll at Olde World Canterbury Village. I had a blast at Canterbury Village, the lights are magical and you can meet several famous characters along the way!
When (Event Calendar): Open 5 pm each day: November 22, 2023 (Jay Jr Charity Night), November 24-25-26, 2023, December 1-2-3, 2023, December 8-9-10, 2023. December 15-16-17, 2023 and December 21-22-23, 2023.
Make the Holiday Stroll one of your most memorable experience of the holiday season!
25. Kerrytown District KindleFest | Ann Arbor Farmers Market | Outdoor Holiday Market | Ann Arbor Michigan | Southeast Michigan Christmas Event
When: An Outdoor Holiday Market, December 1, 2023; 5:00- 10:00 pm.
Where: Kerrytown District KindleFest, Ann Arbor Farmers Market, 315 Detroit St, Ann Arbor, MI.
Kerrytown District KindleFest is an Outdoor Holiday Market with several artisans and vendors selling holiday goods in a festival holiday outdoor setting. In Ann Arbor, Kerrytown District retail businesses and restaurants will remain open later into the evening.
Best Things to Do at Christmas in Michigan!
26. Brunch with Santa and Reindeer! | St. Joseph, MI (Southwest Michigan Christmas Event For Kids)
Where: The Inn at Harbor Shores, 800 Whitwam Drive. St. Joseph, MI 49085
Two events: Book your tickets early!
- Sunday, December 10, 2023 is Brunch with Santa from 9AM-3PM! This brunch with Santa will be al carte from Plank’s Brunch Menu.
- Sunday, December 17, 2023 is Brunch with Santa and his Reindeer from 9 AM-3 PM! Brunch buffet will be in the Harborview Ballroom on the 2nd floor of the Inn.
Stay in the Loop!
Michigan December Events, Festivals and Things to Do
Michigan January Events, Festivals and Things to Do
See what's going on in Michigan in December!
January has tons of activities too! Lots of events, festivals and FUN!
Isn't Christmas in Michigan Wonderful? What are your favorite things to do?
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