Welcome to Philadelphia, where December brings a flurry of festive fun and exciting events. Whether you’re a local or visiting from out of town, there’s plenty to see, do, and explore in the City of Brotherly Love. From dazzling holiday lights to historical walking tours, this guide will help you make the most of your December visit to Philadelphia.

Key Takeaways:

  • December in Philadelphia offers a wide range of activities and events for everyone to enjoy.
  • Experience the holiday magic at Winterfest in Dilworth Park and marvel at the stunning ice rink.
  • Immerse yourself in the enchanting LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo and enjoy the illuminated wonderland.
  • Discover the rich African American history of Philadelphia’s 7th Ward on a historic walking tour.
  • Indulge in the holiday spirit at the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular in FDR Park and enjoy ice activities and a holiday market.
  • Embark on a festive journey at Longwood Gardens and admire the illuminated fountains.
  • Immerse yourself in the holiday spirit at Peddler’s Village with its twinkling lights and gingerbread competition.
  • Experience the charm of a European marketplace at Christmas Village in Philadelphia and enjoy holiday shopping.
  • Head to Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest for ice skating and winter activities on the waterfront.

Winterfest at Dilworth Park

Dive into the holiday spirit at Winterfest in Dilworth Park. Skate around the open-air ice rink, enjoy the festive lights and decorations, and indulge in seasonal treats from the on-site food stalls. Don’t forget to explore the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market for unique handmade gifts and crafts.

Winterfest at Dilworth Park is a popular attraction in Philadelphia during December. The ice skating rink provides a fun and festive activity for visitors of all ages. Glide across the ice as you take in the stunning views of City Hall and the surrounding holiday decor. Whether you’re an experienced skater or a beginner, this is a perfect opportunity to enjoy the winter atmosphere.

The holiday market at Winterfest is a great place to find one-of-a-kind gifts for your loved ones. Browse through the stalls and discover a wide variety of handmade crafts, artwork, and local products. From jewelry and clothing to candles and home decor, there’s something for everyone. Support local artisans and find unique treasures at the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market.

Winterfest Highlights:

  • Open-air ice skating rink
  • Festive lights and decorations
  • On-site food stalls with seasonal treats
  • Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market for unique gifts

Make Winterfest at Dilworth Park a must-visit destination during your trip to Philadelphia in December. Whether you’re looking to skate, shop, or simply soak up the holiday atmosphere, this event has something for everyone. Experience the joy and excitement of the season at Winterfest.

Table: Dilworth Park Winterfest Schedule

Date Activity Time
December 1st Grand Opening 6:00 PM
December 5th Live Music Performance 7:30 PM
December 10th Visits from Santa Claus 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
December 18th Ice Sculpture Demonstration 3:00 PM

LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo

Experience the magic of LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo, a mesmerizing holiday lights display that will delight visitors of all ages. As you enter this enchanting nighttime wonderland, you’ll be greeted by over 1 million dazzling holiday lights arranged in 16 different zones throughout the zoo. From towering illuminated sculptures to sparkling pathways, every corner of LumiNature is designed to evoke a sense of wonder and awe.

Not only can you bask in the beauty of the holiday lights, but you’ll also have the chance to enjoy a variety of family-friendly activities. Immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere as you savor delicious seasonal snacks and beverages. Be entertained by live performances and special appearances by your favorite zoo animals. LumiNature truly offers a unique and memorable experience that combines the magic of the holiday season with the wonders of wildlife.

Whether you’re visiting with friends, family, or a loved one, LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo is sure to create lasting memories. Bundle up and stroll through this illuminated wonderland, taking in the breathtaking sights and sounds of the holiday season. Don’t miss this opportunity to embark on a magical journey that brings together the beauty of nature and the joy of the holidays.

LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo

Familiarize yourself with the main attractions of LumiNature:

  • The Aviary: Step into an illuminated aviary where you can marvel at the stunning colors and graceful movements of various bird species.
  • The Arctic Oasis: Encounter majestic sculptures of polar bears and other Arctic animals surrounded by shimmering lights, transporting you to a frozen wonderland.
  • The Enchanted Tree: Stand in awe of a towering tree adorned with sparkling lights and ornaments, creating a magical centerpiece for the entire display.
  • The Rainforest Canopy: Venture into a lush rainforest, illuminated by vibrant lights and featuring the sounds of exotic creatures.
  • The Watering Hole: Discover a mesmerizing oasis of cascading waterfalls and shimmering lights, providing a serene and tranquil escape.

Historic Walking Tours at 7th Ward

If you’re looking to uncover the rich African American history of Philadelphia, a guided walking tour of the 7th Ward is a must. This historic neighborhood played a vital role in the Underground Railroad and the Great Migration, and it’s filled with significant sites that tell the story of African American resilience and triumph.

On these walking tours, knowledgeable guides will take you on a journey through time, sharing stories and insights about the neighborhood’s past. You’ll visit landmarks such as the Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, the oldest African American church property in the country, and the Octavius V. Catto Memorial, honoring an influential civil rights activist.

As you explore the streets of the 7th Ward, you’ll learn about notable figures like Octavius V. Catto and W. E. B. Du Bois, who made significant contributions to the African American heritage of Philadelphia. Delve into the stories of resilience, activism, and cultural richness that have shaped this vibrant community.

Table: Famous Landmarks in the 7th Ward

Landmark Description
Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church The oldest African American church property in the country, founded in 1794.
Octavius V. Catto Memorial A monument honoring Octavius V. Catto, a prominent civil rights activist.
W. E. B. Du Bois House The former residence of W. E. B. Du Bois, a celebrated African American scholar and activist.
Underground Railroad Museum A museum dedicated to preserving the history of the Underground Railroad and its impact on Philadelphia.

These guided tours offer a unique opportunity to connect with Philadelphia’s African American heritage and gain a deeper understanding of the city’s historical significance. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, exploring the 7th Ward will undoubtedly leave you with a newfound appreciation for the contributions of African Americans to Philadelphia’s cultural tapestry.

Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park

Immerse yourself in the festive ambiance of the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park. This annual event is a winter wonderland that offers a variety of exciting ice activities in Philadelphia. Strap on your ice skates and take a spin on the winding ice trail, where you can glide under the twinkling lights and experience the joy of gliding on ice. If you’re feeling adventurous, challenge yourself on the 160-foot-long ice slide, providing a thrilling descent that is sure to get your adrenaline pumping.

As you explore the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular, make sure to visit the Mistletoe Marketplace. This charming holiday market in South Philly showcases a wide range of unique gifts and crafts created by local artisans. From handmade jewelry to festive home decor, you’ll find that perfect something for everyone on your holiday shopping list. And after all the excitement and shopping, head over to the Union Forge Lodge to indulge in delicious food and beverages, warming you up from the inside out.

With its enchanting ice activities and delightful holiday market, the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park is a must-visit destination in Philadelphia during the month of December. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a fun-filled family outing or a romantic winter date, this event offers something for everyone. Bundle up, grab your loved ones, and immerse yourself in the magic of the holiday season at the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular.

Table: Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular Highlights

Event Highlights Date Time
Ice Skating on the Winding Ice Trail December 1 – December 31 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Ice Slide Adventure December 1 – December 31 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Mistletoe Marketplace December 1 – December 31 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM
Food and Beverages at Union Forge Lodge December 1 – December 31 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration

Experience the magic of the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration, a dazzling display of lights and festive cheer. Located in Kennett Square, just outside of Philadelphia, this annual event transforms the gardens into a winter wonderland. As you stroll through the meticulously manicured grounds, you’ll be surrounded by the beauty of hundreds of trees adorned with classic baubles, tinsel, and childhood toys. The vibrant colors and twinkling lights create a mesmerizing atmosphere that is sure to ignite your holiday spirit.

One of the highlights of the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration is the illuminated fountains. These magnificent water features dance to the sounds of the season, creating a captivating spectacle that is truly breathtaking. As you watch the fountains come alive with light and motion, you’ll be transported to a world of enchantment.

To ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all guests, timed tickets are required for entry to the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration. This allows for crowd control and allows you to plan your visit at a time that suits you best. Whether you’re visiting with family, friends, or on your own, this holiday display is a must-see attraction that will leave you with lasting memories.

Immerse yourself in the wonder and beauty of the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration. Marvel at the illuminated fountains, admire the festive displays, and embrace the joyous atmosphere of the holiday season. Plan your visit today and experience the magic of this beloved Philadelphia tradition.

Peddler’s Village Festivities

Immerse yourself in the holiday spirit at Peddler’s Village in Bucks County, just a short drive from Philadelphia. Known for its charming atmosphere and picturesque setting, Peddler’s Village offers a festive escape for holiday shoppers and enthusiasts. With over 60 specialty shops, you’ll find unique gifts, decorations, and one-of-a-kind treasures for everyone on your list.

As you explore the village, be captivated by the sight of 1 million twinkling lights adorning the buildings and trees. The enchanting display creates a magical ambiance that is sure to put you in the holiday mood. Take a leisurely stroll through the village’s beautifully decorated streets, soaking in the festive atmosphere and enjoying the joyous sounds of the season.

One of the highlights of the Peddler’s Village Festivities is the annual Gingerbread Competition & Display. Showcasing over 100 handcrafted gingerbread creations, this competition is a feast for the eyes. Marvel at the creativity and skill of the participants as you admire their intricate designs and delicious creations. From whimsical houses to intricate landmarks, each gingerbread masterpiece tells its own unique story.

Event Date Time
Gingerbread Competition & Display December 4 – January 8 All day
Holiday Shopping November 18 – January 8 Store hours
Twinkling Lights Display November 19 – January 8 Evenings

Don’t miss out on the holiday shopping experience of a lifetime. Visit Peddler’s Village Festivities and discover the perfect gifts for your loved ones while immersing yourself in the magic of the season.

Christmas Village in Philadelphia

Experience the charm of a European marketplace at Christmas Village in Philadelphia. Nestled in LOVE Park, this annual holiday attraction brings the festive spirit to the heart of the city. With over 100 vendors offering a wide array of local and international gifts, ornaments, and delectable treats, Christmas Village is a shopper’s paradise. Whether you’re searching for unique holiday decorations or looking to indulge in traditional German snacks like bratwurst and mulled wine, this magical marketplace has something for everyone.

The atmosphere at Christmas Village is truly enchanting. As you stroll through the twinkling lights and beautifully decorated stalls, you’ll be transported to a winter wonderland. Feel the warmth of the holiday spirit as you browse the handcrafted goods and chat with the friendly vendors. The aroma of freshly baked cookies and roasted nuts fills the air, creating a truly immersive experience.

In addition to shopping, Christmas Village offers fun activities for all ages. Take a ride on the Christmas Village Carousel or Ferris Wheel for a breathtaking view of the surrounding cityscape. Enjoy live music and entertainment on the main stage, adding to the festive ambiance. And don’t forget to capture the magic of the moment with a photo in front of the iconic LOVE sculpture, adorned with holiday decorations.

Table: Must-Visit Highlights at Christmas Village in Philadelphia

Attractions Highlights
Vendor Stalls Browse through a wide selection of gifts, crafts, and holiday decorations.
Food and Drinks Indulge in traditional German snacks, sweets, and warm drinks.
Christmas Village Carousel Take a ride on the beautifully decorated carousel.
Christmas Village Ferris Wheel Enjoy breathtaking views of the city from the Ferris Wheel.
Main Stage Entertainment Experience live music and performances throughout the day.
LOVE Sculpture Take a memorable photo in front of the iconic LOVE sculpture.

Don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in the holiday magic at Christmas Village in Philadelphia. Whether you’re searching for unique gifts, savoring festive treats, or simply enjoying the joyful atmosphere, this European-style marketplace is a must-visit destination for holiday shopping in Philly. Make sure to mark your calendars and experience the enchantment for yourself!

Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest

One of the must-visit winter attractions in Philadelphia is the Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest. Located on the waterfront, this festival offers a delightful winter wonderland experience for visitors of all ages.

The highlight of the Winterfest is the enormous ice skating rink that allows guests to glide and twirl on the ice while taking in the scenic views of the Delaware River. Whether you’re a seasoned skater or a beginner, the rink provides a fun-filled activity for everyone to enjoy. Skating rentals are available on-site, making it convenient for those who don’t have their own skates.

Aside from ice skating, the Winterfest offers various activities to keep you entertained throughout your visit. Take a leisurely stroll along the boardwalk and engage in friendly games such as shuffleboard or connect four. Warm up by the cozy fire pits while sipping on hot cocoa or indulge in delicious food from the cabin-style concessions. The festival also hosts a star-studded tree lighting ceremony, adding a touch of magic to the atmosphere.

With its picturesque waterfront location, engaging activities, and festive ambiance, the Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest is a must-see attraction for those looking to embrace the winter season in Philadelphia.

ice skating in Philadelphia

Winter Activities on the Waterfront

If you’re visiting Philadelphia in December, don’t miss out on the exciting winter activities available on the waterfront. From ice skating to holiday markets, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

  • Ice Skating: Glide across the ice at the Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest or Winterfest at Dilworth Park for a fun-filled skating experience.
  • Holiday Markets: Explore the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market or Christmas Village in Philadelphia for unique gifts and delicious treats.
  • Holiday Lights: Marvel at the enchanting LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo or the illuminated fountains at Longwood Gardens.
  • Cozy Cabins: Warm up by the fire pits and enjoy tasty food and drinks at the Winterfest cabins or the Union Forge Lodge at Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor, these winter activities on the Philadelphia waterfront are sure to make your December memorable.

Conclusion

December in Philadelphia is a month filled with excitement and festive cheer. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, there are plenty of things to do in Philadelphia in December 2024. From ice skating and holiday lights to cultural celebrations and historic tours, the city offers something for everyone.

Explore Winterfest at Dilworth Park and enjoy the open-air ice rink, festive lights, and delicious seasonal treats. Immerse yourself in the magic of LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo, where over 1 million holiday lights create a mesmerizing display. Take a guided walking tour of Philadelphia’s 7th Ward and uncover the hidden history of the neighborhood.

Don’t miss the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park, where you can skate on the ice trail and browse the Mistletoe Marketplace for unique gifts. Experience the enchanting Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration with its illuminated fountains and beautifully decorated trees. Visit Peddler’s Village for its twinkling lights and the Gingerbread Competition & Display.

Indulge in the charm of a European marketplace at Christmas Village in Philadelphia, and explore the array of vendors and delightful treats. Head to Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest for ice skating, games, and cozy cabins serving delicious food and drinks. Plan your visit to Philadelphia in December 2024 and create lasting memories during this magical time of year.

FAQ

What are the best things to do in Philadelphia in December 2024?

In December 2024, you can enjoy Winterfest at Dilworth Park, LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo, historic walking tours at 7th Ward, Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park, Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration, Peddler’s Village festivities, Christmas Village in Philadelphia, and Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest.

What can I expect at Winterfest at Dilworth Park?

Winterfest at Dilworth Park offers open-air ice skating, festive lights and decorations, seasonal treats from food stalls, and the Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market for unique handmade gifts and crafts.

What is LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo?

LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo is an enchanting nighttime display featuring over 1 million holiday lights arranged in 16 different zones. You can enjoy festive snacks, live performances, and the company of your favorite animals as you explore the illuminated wonderland.

What can I learn on the historic walking tours at 7th Ward?

On the historic walking tours at 7th Ward, you can explore the significant sites that played a vital role in the Underground Railroad and the Great Migration. You’ll learn about notable figures like Octavius V. Catto and W. E. B. Du Bois who contributed to the rich African American heritage of the neighborhood.

What is the Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park?

The Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park offers a winding ice trail, a 160-foot-long ice slide, the Mistletoe Marketplace for unique gifts, and delicious food and beverages at the Union Forge Lodge.

What can I experience at the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration?

At the Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration, you can admire hundreds of trees adorned with classic baubles, tinsel, and childhood toys. You’ll be captivated by the illuminated fountains that dance to the sounds of the season. Timed tickets are required for this holiday extravaganza.

What can I enjoy at Peddler’s Village Festivities?

At Peddler’s Village, you can explore over 60 specialty shops offering unique gifts and decorations. Marvel at the 1 million twinkling lights that adorn buildings and trees throughout the village. Don’t miss the Gingerbread Competition & Display, featuring over 100 handcrafted gingerbread creations.

What is Christmas Village in Philadelphia?

Christmas Village in Philadelphia is a European marketplace in LOVE Park. You can browse through more than 100 vendors selling local and international gifts, ornaments, and delectable treats. Enjoy the festive atmosphere, indulge in delicious snacks, and take a spin on the Christmas Village Carousel and Ferris Wheel.

What can I do at Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest?

At Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest, you can glide across the enormous ice skating rink, enjoy games on the boardwalk, and warm up by the fire pits. Don’t miss the star-studded tree lighting ceremony and explore the cozy cabins for delicious food and drinks.

What are the best things to do in Philadelphia in December 2024?

In December 2024, you can enjoy Winterfest at Dilworth Park, LumiNature at the Philadelphia Zoo, historic walking tours at 7th Ward, Tinseltown Holiday Spectacular at FDR Park, Longwood Gardens Holiday Celebration, Peddler’s Village festivities, Christmas Village in Philadelphia, and Independence Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest.

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