‘Tis the season: Your ultimate guide to family-friendly holiday events and activities

Take a tour through one of Miami's unique Christmas stops - Santa's Enchanted Forest. Photo: Tomas Loewy

The holidays are different in Miami. There’s no doubt about that. While it seems like God himself will hear everyone else’s prayers for a White Christmas, in Miami, our holidays are marked by more sun.

But what we lack in winter weather during the holidays, we make up for in a great number of festivities for the entire family. Miami’s holidays include festivals, concerts, theater productions, faux snow and boat parades.

Not feeling touched with the holiday spirit just yet? Don’t be a scrooge, make plans to attend any of these upcoming holiday events.

For other holiday guides, check out these useful links:

READ: Ultimate Guide to New Year’s Eve 2018 Parties in Miami

READ: These are the best Chanukah events, parties and festivals to attend this year

Santa’s Enchanted Forest

An institution of Miami’s holiday cheer for 35 years,  the carnival boasts more than 100 rides, shows, games, attractions, and Christmas trees.

What: Santa’s Enchanted Forest
When: Nov. 2, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018
Where: Tropical Park, 7900 SW 40th St. in Miami
Tickets: $33.64 and up for adults
Website: www.santasenchantedforest.com

7900 SW 40th St, Miami, FL 33155

Magical Snowfall at Dolphin Mall

A family admires a Snow Globe display at Dolphin Mall in Doral.

The annual tradition returns to Dolphin Mall: snow in South Florida! Children receive magical wands to make the snow appear every evening in the Ramblas Plaza.

What: Magic Snowfall at Dolphin Mall
When: Nov. 22, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018, except on Nov. 23, Dec. 24, Dec. 25, Dec. 31 and Jan. 1
Time: 7 p.m. daily, with an additional 9 p.m. snowfall on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays
Where: Ramblas Plaza at the Dolphin Mall, 11401 N.W. 12th St. Miami, FL 33172
Cost: Free
Website: www.shopdolphinmall.com/

11401 N.W. 12th St. Miami, FL 33172

The Symphony of Lights

Visit the park’s holiday village with a 50-foot Christmas tree, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, a DJ, stilt jumpers, jugglers, tattoo artists, train rides, and thousands of lights coordinated to music every day at 5 p.m.

What: The Symphony of Lights
When: Nov. 24 – Dec. 31 from
Time: 6 – 11 p.m.
Where: Gulfstream Park, 901 S. Federal Highway in Hallandale Beach
Cost: Free
Website: www.gulfstreampark.com

901 S Federal Hwy, Hallandale Beach, FL 33009

Zoo Lights

The animals of Zoo Miami are aglow for the holidays! Wander through the property on Fridays and Saturdays in December to experience different themed evenings, and every night from Dec. 26 to 30.

Families can enjoy lit up trees and animal shapes, hot chocolate and cookies, photos with Santa, and holiday music at Zoo Lights.

What: Zoo Lights
When: Fridays and Saturdays, Dec. 1-23; Everyday Dec. 26-30
Time: 7-10 p.m.
Where: Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152nd St. in Miami
Tickets: $7.95 members, $9.95 non-mmembers
Website: http://www.zoomiami.org/Zoo_Lights_2017

12400 SW 152nd St, Miami, FL 33177

Winter Shorts: America’s Short Play Winter Festival

Short plays no more than 10 minutes long get a dash of holiday cheer. The actors of City Theatre perform naughty and nice pieces by the country’s best playwrights.

What: America’s Short Play Winter Festival
When: Dec. 7-23
Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd. in Miami
Tickets: $39
Website: www.arshtcenter.org

1300 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132

Miami City Ballet Presents George Balanchine's The Nutcracker

The Miami City Ballet presents its new production of “The Nutcracker” with mesmerizing choreography by George Balanchine and the classic score by Tchaikovsky.

What: George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker
When: Dec. 15 to 24
Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd. in Miami
Tickets: $40 and up
Website: www.arshtcenter.org

1300 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132

Victorian Christmas at Stranahan House

Travel back in time to the Victorian Era with Frank and Ivy Stranahan, the founders of Fort Lauderdale, in their decadent home with guides in period clothing, live music, photos, and other classic fun.

What: Victorian Christmas
When: Dec. 18 to 23
Time: 7 p.m.
Where: Stranahan House, 335 SE Sixth Ave. in Fort Lauderdale.
Tickets: $30
Website: www.stranahanhouse.org

335 SE 6th Ave, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

The Ten Tenors: Home for the Holidays

Three tenors? Try 10. The group from Australia performs both traditional and contemporary holiday songs, including “Joy to the World,” “White Christmas,” Amazing Grace,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Feliz Navidad” and more.

What: The Ten Tenors: Home for the Holidays
When: Dec. 22 at 8 p.m.
Time: 8 p.m.
Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd. in Miami
Tickets: $30 and up
Website: www.arshtcenter.org

1300 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132


Didn’t find exactly what you’re looking for? Maybe you’re interested in partying away 2017 in stylish fashion. Or you want to celebrate Chanukah in South Florida. Either way, Miami.com’s got you!

BROWSE: Miami.com Guide – Holidays

1300 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132