Christmas at National Harbor 2016

Christmas Tree Lighting, Holiday Music, Light Shows and More

Christmas Tree at National Harbor
••• Christmas Tree at National Harbor. Rachel Cooper

National Harbor, the 300-acre waterfront development near Washington, DC, hosts a festive season of holiday events along the Potomac River including a Christmas tree lighting, a holiday market, live entertainment, holiday movies, photos with Santa and fireworks. While visiting National Harbor, be sure to check out the spectacular holiday decorations and special events at the Gaylord National Resort.

The decor includes a 65-foot tall Christmas tree made of synthetic “candy” glass, sparkling icicles lighting up the 20-story atrium, a miniature Potomac Express Train Village and much more. Gaylord National Resort's ICE! is an interactive holiday attraction and a "must see". It's a winter wonderland created entirely of 5,000 BLOCKS of ice hand-sculpted by 40 international artisans and kept at a chilling nine degrees Fahrenheit.

National Harbor is located in Prince George's County, Maryland on the Potomac River, just minutes from Washington, DC. For directions and general information about the area , see A Visitors Guide to National Harbor

Schedule of Events at the National Harbor

  • Gaylord National Resort's ICE! - November 19, 2016 through January 1, 2017. Hours vary. Gaylord National Resort, 201 Waterfront Street, National Harbor, Maryland. The winter wonderland is an interactive attraction featuring ten different, larger-than-life scenes. Visit with the whole family throughout the holiday season. See Photos of ICE! Nightly entertainment at the Gaylord National Resort includes a Tree of Light, indoor snowfall, tree lighting show, Brightest Star Fountain Show and much more.
  • National Harbor Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony - November 13, 2016, noon-7:30 p.m. Waterfront Plaza - National Harbor. Kick off the holiday season with fireworks and the lighting of a 60ft Christmas tree decorated with 20,000 lights. The evening's finale will be a spectacular light show featuring the lighting of the National Harbor Christmas Tree and fireworks.

    12 p.m. Marine Band Performance
    2 p.m. Holiday Movie Screening - Prancer - on the Plaza
    3 p.m. Santa at The Black Dog
    5 p.m. Santa at the Carousel
    5:30 p.m. Radio King Orchestra Performance
    6:30p.m. Tree Lighting Ceremony and Fireworks

  • National Harbor Christmas Light Show - Nightly throughout the holiday season. Waterfront Plaza - National Harbor. The light show will continue each night through the holiday season. Beginning the half hour after sunset and continuing every half hour until 9:30 p.m.
  • Photos with Santa at The Capital Wheel -  Every Saturday through the holiday season, 2 - 4 p.m. Photos available for purchase with admission. The ferris wheel is enclosed and heated and offers spectacular views.  Read more about the Capital Wheel.

  • Ho-Ho-Holiday Carousel Rides with Santa -  Every Saturday through the holiday season,  12 – 2 p.m. Cost:  $7 per child for unlimited rides (plus tax); adults ride free when accompanying a paid child. Read more about the National Harbor Carousel.

  • Holiday Music - Saturdays, November 13-December 17, 2016, 1-2 p.m.  Enjoy free holiday entertainment performed by local school choirs, performance groups, and orchestras.
  • Holiday Movies on the Jumbotron at the Plaza – 2- 4 p.m.
    November 19 - The Santa Clause
    November 26 - National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
    December 3 - Elf
    December 10 - Jack Frost
    December 17 - Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas

    See also, Top 10 Things to Do at National Harbor

    See also, 10 Best National Harbor Festivals and Events