Norfolk: your home for the holidays image

Enjoy the sights and sounds of the holidays in Norfolk! From shopping and dining to parades, festivals, seasonal shows and so much more, Norfolk is your home for the holidays.

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Garden of Lights

Norfolk Botanical Garden

December 16 - December 31


Don’t miss Virginia’sfavorite holiday tradition. Bring your family and friends to our 25th annual light show extravaganza for a magical holiday experience. During this event, the Garden is transformed into a winter wonderland where you will enjoy a 2-mile drive through a million sparkling lights bringing the four seasons to life.


Visit the Norfolk Botanical Garden website for ticket information.

MacArthur Center Santa

Visit with Santa!

Photos with Santa in the Ice Palace

MacArthur Center

November 10 - December 24

Visitors are transported to a winter wonderland when they step inside the spectacular holiday Ice Palace, featuring a 30-foot ice dome with falling snow, a light show and interactive fun for all ages. Visitors can also marvel at the larger-than-life snow globes, leave an icy handprint and sit on the chilly Ice Throne.The adventure culminates with a visit to Santa and a special gift.Visit the MacArthur Center website to view Santa hours of operation and package pricing.

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Dickens Christmas Towne

November 17 - December 31


Celebrate family, art and literature during six magical weeks in this delightful holiday village. In recognition of the 175th anniversary of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, this season will feature the first-ever U.S. exhibition of original book sketches by Christmas Carol illustrator P.J. Lynch.


Let your imagination soar with magical fairies, carousel horses, weekend tea parties, a second giant train display, carolers, new entertainment, shops and more! Every child will receive a FREE copy of A Christmas Carol. Returning to this year’s experience will be Father Christmas, Geoffrey “the Talking Christmas tree”, puppet shows, magicians, a children’s crafts corner, and lots of free family activities! PLUS, special programming returns the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

Puppets from Dickens Christmas Towne
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Norfolk Public Library Holiday Events

Join Norfolk Public Library all holiday season long for great events, like visits from Santa, movies, crafts, music, and more!

Don't forget to visit their Trees of Honor at each branch location and snap a selfie to share, then create a card to send to service members or first responders.

NPL Trees of Honor
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MacArthur ice rink at night

MacArthur On Ice

November 17 - January 14


MacArthur Center kicks off the fourteenth season of ice skating at the coolest place in town. Whether it’s a family tradition or a first date, the center’s 7,200-square-foot outdoor ice rink is the place for good times this winter.


Throughout the season, enjoy public skating sessions, ice hockey clinics, figure skating exhibitions and more. Those new to the ice or feeling a bit rusty can sign up for private lessons or get a helping hand from skate guards on-site.


The ice skating rink is located just outside MacArthur Center, at the corner of Monticello Avenue and Freemason Street. Click here for details, special events and pricing.

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Enjoy Festive Performances!

Wells Theatre
November 30 - December 23

It wouldn't be the holidays without Dickens' A Christmas Carol at the Wells Theatre. Experience the childlike wonder of this heartwarming story that follows the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future as they take Ebenezer Scrooge on a journey of redemption where he learns the power of kindness and compassion. This play is recommended for all ages and, in our opinion, is better the more kids you bring. Click here for show times and tickets.

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Holiday Jazz Flights

Norfolk International Airport

December 17 - 21

In celebration of the holiday season, Norfolk International Airport, in partnership with Virginia Arts Festival and Norfolk Botanical Garden, present ‘Jazz Flights,’ a concert series at Norfolk International Airport. “Jet Setters,” a trio of professional musicians, will perform holiday favorites each afternoon in the Main Passenger Terminal Lobby. Designers from Norfolk Botanical Garden will create festive décor utilizing natural foliage from the Garden’s grounds.

Stay Active!

Norfolk Botanical GardenJanuary 1Kick off the New Year in a fun, healthy way. Run through 2.019 miles of spectacular light displays in the most beautiful place in Hampton Roads—Norfolk Botanical Garden!Each year more than 600 runners and their families enjoy the Dominion Energy Garden of Lights annual light show extravaganza while starting off the New Year on the right foot—and the left! The Garden 2.019 Fun Run is a fundraising event that helps support Norfolk Botanical Garden programs. This run is fun for the entire family. Register Online.