Our Favorite Family-Friendly Phoenix Holiday Traditions

Photo courtesy of City of Phoenix

‘Tis the season for bright and merry family memories. Here’s where you can find us celebrating December and January in all their splendor.

APS Electric Light Parade
Dec. 1 & 2, 2017

The 2017 parade already passed, but definitely mark your calendars for next year if you haven’t already done so. Being that this is in our neighborhood of North Central Phoenix, it’s a local holiday tradition that we love to experience time and again. The APS Electric Light Parade is a cheerful community event that is perfect for kickstarting the holiday season with friends and loved ones.

Las Noches de las Luminarias at Desert Botanical Garden
Now through Dec. 30, 2017

With more than 8,000 hand-lit luminarias and thousands of white twinkling lights, the Desert Botanical Garden is truly magical this time of year. What’s even more special about the event this year is that DBG is hosting the bold, monumental sculptures of Japanese American artist Jun Kaneko throughout its trails, which makes the entire evening all the merrier.

Christmas at The Princess
Now through Dec. 31, 2017

An absolute must-see! The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess turns its grounds into a live-action holiday celebration that rivals those you’ll find at Disneyland and other major theme parks. There’s an ice skating rink, Build-a-Bear Workshop, enchanting shows, s’mores station and – of course – Santa’s Secret Headquarters for a meeting with the main elf himself.

CitySkate Holiday Ice Rink
Now through Jan. 7, 2018

The Travel Channel recently named CitySkate one of the best ice rinks in North America. And is it any wonder why? With a 36-foot tree as your backdrop, you’ll celebrate the season with Santa photo sessions plus art installations, performances and light-up jewelry for sale courtesy of this year’s partnership with the Phoenix Art Museum. Don’t miss it!

ZooLights – Let It Glow at The Phoenix Zoo
Now through Jan. 14, 2018

You haven’t lived until you’ve taken in the sights of the Phoenix Zoo’s three-story Christmas tree! Our kids absolutely love this Valley holiday tradition and how could they not? It’s a complete winter wonderland of lights, music-in-motion shows and special happenings, including photos with Santa, carousel rides and a nightly snowfall at 7:30 p.m.