YAHglobal Best & Worst Lists for Attractions Around the World
Best Christmas Celebrations in America
1. New York City Holiday Festivities - NY
It's hard to deny New York's appeal during the holiday season. For many it all starts this year with Macy's 2013 Thanksgiving Day Parade. Others kick off early with the Rockettes at the famed Radio City Music Hall while some start their Christmas shopping early at the Bryant Park Holiday Market. No matter your taste, no city in America offers the variety that NYC does at Christmas.
2. Christmastown USA - North Carolina
Christmastown aka McAdenville is a town that sugar plum dreams are made of. It's a magical North Carolina town where your car stalls on the outskirts en route to Charlotte. You make your way to town to find a mechanic only to be informed by a pleasant elderly couple that the shops shut down at 5PM but they have room at their B&B for the night so you and your family can rest until dawn. Snow unexpectedly falls even though the forecast called for dry skies. Any petty family grievances you may have had are resolved when you help the town's residents find the lost baby Jesus centerpiece that mysteriously disappeared the night before the tree and manger scene go up in city square. Egg nog is shared, the scent of sugar cookies wafts through the air, and silent night is hummed as the soundtrack through the whole affair.
3. Stone Mountain Christmas 2013 - Atlanta GA
Snow may be rare in Atlanta but from late November to early January, Stone Mountain Park, one of the city's most popular attractions, turns into a real life Winter Wonderland. What may lack in snowflakes is made up for with millions of decorations and sparkling lights dancing throughout the Stone Mountain village. Nutcrackers, Snow Angels, Reindeer, and of course Santa Claus himself can be found on site to ensure the festivities live up to the expectations of the wide eyed children that enter the North Pole of the Southeastern U.S.
4. Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade 2013 - Orange County CA
Best Christmas Boat Parade in America
All over America there are marina launched Christmas boat parades and while each has its charm and warm place within the hearts of nearby residents there is no greater harbor holiday event than the one found at Newport Beach's Balboa community. The Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade is a staple tradition in Orange County that draws crowds from all over Southern California and the rest of the country.
5. Christkindlmarket Chicago 2013 - Chicago, IL
Make a Christmas wish for snow in the Windy City to complete the perfect holiday picture as Daley Plaza converts into Germany - circa sometime in December in the 15th century. Ornate Beer Steins are raised in holiday cheer as a crowd that normally gathers to herald the praises of the Bears, the Bulls, and the Cubs, turns its attention to sauerkraut, sausage, and steaming Glühwein.
6. Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party - Orlando, FL
Some gripe about the Disney "machine" taking the spirit out of the holiday season with its heavy commercial branding. We've got a secret for you - the only one that can take the spirit out of Christmas is YOU. Vent about the corporate conspiracies behind Disney when your kids come home for the semester from community college and let them enjoy their childhood by spending at least one Christmas at Orlando Disney World.
7. Kauai Festival of Lights - Kauai, HI
For mainlanders, Christmas on the islands is a 180 degree twist from what they are accustomed to. Although some fear a loss of that special holiday season feeling while in an 80 degree plus tropical climate, Christmas in Hawaii comes with a whole new set of holiday experiences without losing one ounce of sentiment.