Top 10 Must-See Holiday Light Festivals in Michigan

**Updated dates for the 2023-2024 season!**

Nothing screams Christmas like a festival of lights! We are fortunate enough in the great state of Michigan to have more than a handful of towns that display their Christmas thrill with thousands and sometimes millions of lights. We have narrowed down our list to 10 towns in Michigan that have must-see light festivals during the holiday season. (Cities shown in no particular order)

FRANKENMUTH

Well, not to toot our own horn, 😉 but Frankenmuth, home to the World’s Largest Christmas Store, does know a thing or two about holiday light decorations!

📷 Photo Credit: Frankenmuth Convention & Visitors Bureau

Not only do we have Christmas Lane, which shines bright 361 days a year with over 100,000 sparkling lights, but we also have the entire town of Frankenmuth filled with Christmas magic from mid-November through the first week of January. After all, the Frankenmuth Christmas Experience includes the spectacular 40-ft. musical, lighted tree; the Frankenmuth Ice Rink; the Stop & Snap Challenge; Little Bavaria’s ‘Little’ Driving Lights Tour; the Frankenmuth Farmers Market Christkindlmarkt; and more! 


ROCHESTER

The Big Bright Light Show – Downtown Rochester

If you were flying over Michigan and looking down, it would be very hard to miss Rochester’s Big Bright light Show on their main streets. Each building is brightly lit with 1 million points of lights in every color of the rainbow.

Photo Credit: Big Bright Light Show Facebook | Featured: Hammer With Christmas Lights Glass Ornament

This extraordinary light display begins November 20, 2023, and continues through January 21, 2024 (5 p.m. – midnight). No purchase necessary, just bundle up and enjoy the downtown Rochester area.


ROYAL OAK

Wild Lights – Detroit Zoo

Nothing can be more unique than seeing Christmas lights at the Detroit Zoo! Each year the zoo hosts the Wild Lights event that has over 5 million LED lights! Trees and buildings are illuminated along with 265 sculptures throughout the front half of the zoo. The spectacular event goes on between 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. select weeknights and all weekends November 24, 2023, through January 7, 2024. You do need a ticket for this event so make sure you buy a ticket online.


BROOKLYN

Nite Light Show – Michigan International Speedway

If you thought the Michigan International Speedway was just for NASCAR, then you are mistaken, my friend!

The speedway’s 5-mile track is transformed into the Nite Lite Show during the holiday season with over 500,000 lights, six Christmas trees (made completely of lights) and a “12 Days of Christmas” themed display. Plus, Pit Road will have four tunnels that guests can drive through. Stay warm and toasty in your car as you drive through the Nite Lite Show November 17, 2023, through January 7, 2024, listening to Christmas music and enjoying the wonderful Christmas scenery. There is a charge per vehicle so check online to see costs and hours.


 

LANSING

Silver Bells in the City – Downtown Lansing

Photo Credit: (Left Image) MichiganFun.com | (Top Right Image) Silverbellsinthecity.org | Featured Product: Cream Bell With Flower Design

Join over 80,000 people for the annual Silver Bells in the City tradition in Downtown Lansing! The capital city glows with thousands of lights and an Electric Light Parade. The Electric Light Parade features lighted floats, two illuminated marching bands and the grand arrival of Santa!

The town is filled with village vendors that can help kick-start your holiday shopping. PLUS, the town lights the official state Christmas tree and celebrates with a community sing. Make sure to check out this attraction that happens one night each year – this year it’s Friday , November 22, 2023!


WESTLAND

Wayne County Lightfest – Hines Park

Photo credit: (Bottom) JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images | (Top Left and Right ) Wayne County Parks

Want to experience living in a winter wonderland that’s lit up with more than one million lights? Then you must take a drive through Hines Park and see the Wayne County Lightfest. This Lightfest runs Thursday, November 16, through Sunday, December 24, 2023, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. To be sure, it features an infinite tunnel of colored lights with more than 47 giant animated displays. It is the Midwest’s LARGEST and LONGEST drive-through holiday light display – approximately 4.5 miles long! Best part is once you reach the end of this wonderful drive, you can visit Santa’s workshop and grab a keepsake photo with Santa. So … grab some hot-cocoa, crank up the heat in the car and enjoy the Christmas spirit of Wayne County.


Photo Credit: (Top and Bottom) Mandy Schram Photography | Featured Product: Polar Bear Skating Glass Ornament

MANISTEE

 Sparkle in the Park – Hopkins Park, Bear Lake

Enjoy the holiday season with thousands of lights showcased throughout Hopkins Park, Bear Lake November 25, 2023, through January 1, 2024. Sparkle in the Park has around 50 holiday displays including angels, Christmas trees, Santa, snowmen, a salute to troops and various Christmas scenes! Sparkle in the Park is open nightly from 5 p.m. -10 p.m.


MARSHALL

The Merry Mile – Calhoun County Fairgrounds

Come and enjoy this mile-long light display at the Calhoun County Fairgrounds featuring special lights and animated displays! The Merry Mile begins November 30 and goes through December 30, 2023, Thursday through Sunday, from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. The Merry Mile costs $10 per car and $20 per van/bus with all proceeds going to the Calhoun County Fairgrounds. 

Photo Credit: (Left) ChooseMarshall.com | (Right) Circle Michigan | Featured Product: Joy And Peace Lighted Christmas Tree Window Ornamental

DAVISON

Holiday Trail of Lights – Williams Nature Center

Photo Credit: Davison Holiday Trail of Lights

Start the Christmas Season off right with a walk through the Holiday Trail of Lights at Davison Township’s Williams Nature Center December 8-10, 15-17 and 21-23, 2023, from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Enjoy seeing 100,000 lights over a quarter of a mile while listening to Christmas music! Dates and hours and ticket prices for either walking the trail or taking a tractor ride are available at https://davisontwp-mi.gov/parks-rec/?month=12&yr=2023  .


How about trying to re-create your own mini light festival?! Check out our HUGE light selection online to find the perfect sets of lights to give your home an unforgettable holiday look.

* Products listed on this page may link to similar products on bronners.com if pictured product is no longer available.

3 thoughts on “Top 10 Must-See Holiday Light Festivals in Michigan

  • December 28, 2020 at 6:55 pm
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    <3 B e a u t i f u l ! ! !

    Reply
    • March 5, 2021 at 12:34 pm
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      Thanks, Lore! Aileen is working on an article about community Christmas trees in Michigan. We’re excited to be discovering some real treasures and even a great Christmas river walk we never knew about.

      Reply
  • November 3, 2020 at 6:19 am
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    thanks for your information

    Reply

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