Guide to Christmas in Las Vegas: Weather, Decorations, and Events

Decorative Christmas display of polar bears at the Bellagio in December 2014

 Jamie Hergenrader

In Las Vegas, you'll experience a Christmas unlike any other. Do some high-end shopping, go ice skating, and sample chocolates while enjoying cacti full of Christmas lights. Plus, you'll see more Christmas trees than you can photograph.

Holiday Weather in Las Vegas

It may be the desert, but December in Las Vegas does bring cooler weather (though don't expect a white Christmas—snow never really arrives). Don't be surprised if your Christmas in Las Vegas is blessed with sunshine and 70-degree weather. Even though you won't need your heavy winter coat on the Las Vegas strip, you will want a sweater or jacket for cooler evenings. The average high throughout December is 58 degrees F, while the average low at night dips down to 34 degrees F.

Since the weather is mild, there's plenty to do both inside and outdoors.

Christmas Shopping

Christmas shopping in Las Vegas is outstanding with all the malls and the great outlet centers. The Forum Shops at Caesars as well as the Shoppes in the Grand Canals of the Venetian and the Fashion Show Mall are bound to have what you are looking for (and what you didn't know you were looking for!). 

You may be surprised to hear that there are six certified Rolex dealers on the Strip alone and that you can buy a Ferrari or Maserati direct from the showroom at the Wynn. If your taste runs more to the average, Las Vegas has two Premium Outlet Malls (north and south) where you can find some nice items at outlet prices.

Most of the shops in casinos on the Strip are open Christmas Eve, though most shopping centers close that night.

Casino Decorations

Caesars Palace is usually a nice place to take a stroll, but around Christmas time, the lights and the trees really lend that special holiday feeling. You'll find artificial trees, artificial snow, artificial ice, and reindeer. Las Vegas is all about the make-believe.

At Paris Las Vegas, the "City of Lights" transforms into the city of Christmas lights. Wynn Las Vegas also transforms into a "Winter Wonderland" during the holiday season. 

Bellagio's Conservatory and Botanical Gardens provides an unforgettable holiday experience and it's free. Following Thanksgiving weekend, the gardens are transformed for the Christmas season. Bellagio’s holiday display is one of extraordinary beauty and creativity. There may be trains running through the display and animals perched in trees. The holiday display is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week from December 7, 2019, through January 4, 2020.

Things to Do in Las Vegas

Ice Skating with a View of the StripPut on ice skates at the Cosmopolitan Hotel and glide around while holding someone's hand and sipping a drink. At the Cosmopolitan Ice Rink, you can skate across 4,200 square feet of real ice, roast s’mores by the fire, and indulge in seasonal food and beverage offerings. The Cosmopolitan Hotel Ice Rink is set up in the Boulevard Pool area, and you’ll be in for a treat when the sun goes down; the lights of Las Vegas place a glow on the surrounding landscape. Beginning November 20, 2019, the hotel creates a magical, park-like atmosphere.

Sample Chocolates and See the Holiday Cactus: At the Ethel M Chocolate Factory, the cacti in the garden will be lighted and decorated for the holidays. Ethel M welcomes visitors to see their three acres of cacti covered in a million holiday lights. During the season, they offer live entertainment and hot chocolate. The lighting ceremony is Tuesday, November 5, 2019, and is open nightly until January 5, 2020. Admission is free with a toy, food, or monetary donation to charity.

Christmas Dinner in Las Vegas

From all you can eat buffets with turkey and dressing to elegant multi-course Christmas Eve or Christmas Day dinners, you're bound to find holiday dining in plentiful supply. Some of the more famous restaurants will require reservations months in advance. 

Here are a few of the most popular options:

  • STK at The Cosmopolitan will be open noon to 9:00 p.m. serving their full menu. An 18-ounce Prime Rib Special priced at $95.
  • At Jardine - Encore at Wynn, a special prix fixe Chef's Tasting Menu will be available in addition to the complete a la carte menu. 
  • And The House of Blues Restaurant and Bar offers a Christmas Day special from 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. In addition to their House of Blues Menu, they are also offering a four-course Christmas-inspired feast for $45 per person.