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Christmas Events around the Seattle and Tacoma Areas

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Affordable Christmas Fun in Puget Sound

The holiday season is in full swing here in the Puget Sound area and we are blessed with a wide variety of family fun to be found all around Western Washington.  Whether it be a day in Seattle enjoying the holiday festivities or heading out for an adventure in the mountains to pick out your Christmas tree, there are plenty of options for families to choose from and make special memories with your family this Christmas season.

Find a big list of Christmas Festivals and events, Holiday bazaars and Christmas tree farms to provide some inspiration as you plan your holiday festivities and we’d love for you to share some of your favorite Christmas events, too.

Here are  some of our favorite affordable holiday fun ideas for families!

Family Christmas Activities Around the Puget Sound:

Free Activities:

If you’re wanting to make a visit to Santa, but don’t want to pay the higher prices at many of the malls & other locations, we have compiled a list of Free Santa Pictures , where these free opportunities are often just as nice or even nicer than some of the paid opportunities (such as free cookies & drinks, etc)!

Visit Santa’s reindeer at the Reindeer Festival at Swanson’s Nursery in Seattle plus check out Curly the Camel at the same time. Weekends feature photos with Santa, holiday music & more! If you’re in the South Sound, Watson’s Nursery in Puyallup and Carpinitos Brothers Farm in Kent also have  reindeer on display and open daily through the Christmas season.

If you’re spending the day Christmas shopping, take a break at Snowflake Lane, which happens on the sidewalks outside Bellevue Square Mall at 7pm nightly from Black Friday – Christmas Eve. It’s high-energy fun for the whole family with live toy soldier drummers, fun characters to meet & snow falling nightly.

Head out with friends or family to watch the Argosy Christmas Ship Festival during one of its scheduled spots in numerous waterfront communities. A choir on board the Argosy ship will sing Christmas carols at each of the stops, while you sing along & stay warm with large bonfires on shore. {If you want to ride on the Argosy ship during this festival, you can get discount tickets for select days.}

One of the Argosy ship locations you could head to and see the Christmas ship festival if you time it right, while also seeing christmas lights, are the “Clam Lights” Christmas display at Gene Coulon park. This is totally free for you to walk thru & a beautiful display of Christmas lights right on the shores of Lake Washington in Renton. It’s about a one -mile paved pathway & very pretty with the sparkling lights near the water. You can also stop for a bite to eat at Ivar’s Fish & Chips or Kidd Valley, both located in the park.

Affordable Fun:

Spend a day in Seattle enjoying a variety of holiday festivities and fun on a budget at Christmastime. Start off with a ride on the carousel at Westlake Center, head over to the Seattle Sheraton for their annual Gingerbread Village filled with the most amazing creations, then head to the Teddy Bear suite at the Fairmont Olympic hotel.

For a new twist on selecting your Christmas tree this year, why not head to the mountains for a family adventure? You won’t have the crowds that you might at popular Christmas tree farms, it’s frugal (only $10 for a tree 12 ft & under; $20 for a taller tree) & you’ll have quite a memory of heading into the mountains to find the perfect tree. Just make sure to pick up your tree permit first at REI or a Ranger station.  {And don’t forget that if you have a 4th grader, you can get a Christmas tree for FREE!}

Other Christmas Festivities to Check Out:

Bellevue Botanical Gardens offers a dazzling display of lights with their yearly Garden D’lights, open nightly during the Christmas season. Tickets are affordable at $5/person (free for kids 10 & under) and they also offer 8 free nights to attend the Christmas light display.

Fantasy Lights at Spanaway Park is as 2 mile magical drive through the park filled with beautiful light displays. This is a favorite among parents with young children especially since you can enjoy the lights from the warmth & comfort of your car. Head out with friends and pay just $7 for a car full on one of their half price days.

The Lights of Christmas in Stanwood is one of the most popular places to visit in the Northwest during the Christmas season, thanks to the amazing light displays with over 1 million lights, nightly entertainment, little train rides & more. If admission prices are too steep for your family to attend, they offer 4 “Pay What You Can” nights as another option.

If you have a tradition of watching a favorite holiday musical, play or concert (or want to start one), Goldstar.com offers discount entertainment tickets for events all around the Northwest. They have discounts available for anything from the Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Nutcracker to A Christmas Carol & more. Check out our roundup of all the best discounts for Nutcracker events around the Puget Sound.

Mark your calendars  for next year::

A great way to start the season & focus on the meaning of Christmas is by visiting a  Living Nativity or Nativity tour. With the Living Nativity in Gig Harbor, you’ll walk through a setting filled with over 200 characters & animals depicting the Christmas story in December. Journey to Bethlehem in Auburn is a similar living nativity, which charges $6/person, available for four nights in December. We’ve been to both & our personal favorite is the Journey to Bethlehem as it is more of a tour, with narrators who guide the tour, while the Living Nativity is more of a journey on your own, but they are both wonderful.  {These take place the first & second week of December.}

 What are your favorite holiday events around  the Puget Sound area? 

 

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