If you're going to be in Orlando any time during the 2017 holidays, you'll find a variety of events to mark this celebratory season. There's the official tree-lighting ceremony, favorite holiday music shows, a tour of houses decorated for the season, and special events at Walt Disney World and Epcot.
01 of 05
Lake Eola Park will be the scene of the City of Orlando's yearly tree-lighting ceremony. It will take place starting at 5 p.m. on Dec. 1 with live performances, with the lighting of the 72-foot-tall evergreen tree at 7 p.m. And forget about having dinner at home. Nosh on offerings from food booths and food trucks while you watch this once-a-year show.
02 of 05
Holiday music is a central part of the Christmas season, and Orlando has plenty to offer in 2017. The Brian Setzer Orchestra and its "Christmas Rocks" show, an 18-piece swing and jump blues band, comes to Orlando's Hard Rock Live on Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. Tickets range from $86 to $253 apiece. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra brings its show "The Ghosts of Christmas Eve" to the Amway Center on Dec. 16, with two shows at 3 and 8 p.m. Tickets start at $68. And the Orlando Ballet performs the beloved Christmas classic "The Nutcracker" at Walt Disney Theater at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts from Dec. 21 through 24. Showtimes are 8 p.m. on Dec. 21 and 22, 3 and 8 p.m. on Dec. 23, and 1 p.m. on Dec. 24. Tickets start at $65 per person.
03 of 05
Celebration, Florida, about 20 miles from Orlando, is the scene of an annual holiday home tour of decorated estates, single-family houses, and condos. On this self-guided tour you drive yourself to each house on the itinerary. The tours are on Dec. 2 from 3 to 9 p.m. and Dec. 3 from 1 to 5 p.m. The tours take about two hours. Tickets are $20 apiece.
04 of 05
What's Christmas without a visit to Santa, that jolly old elf? He'll be at the Mall at Millenia's Hollyville from Nov. 3 through Dec. 24, Christmas Eve during regular mall hours. Avoid those long Santa lines at the mall by going on weekdays around dinner time. The closer it gets to Christmas, the longer the wait times, which could be as long as five hours on weekends close to the big day. You can buy photos or snap your own. If you choose to take your own photos (three maximum allowed), the mall encourages a $10 donation to the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children.Continue to 5 of 5 below.
05 of 05
Fron Nov. 9 to Dec. 22 on select nights, Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom is hosting Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. Cinderella's castle sparkles in thousands of lights, and there's magic snow on Main Street (the only place you'll see it in Florida). If that's not enough, you'll also be treated to live entertainment, fireworks, and a parade as only Disney can do.
Over at Epcot from Nov. 19 through Dec. 30, check out the Festival of the Holidays, where you'll find 15 holiday kitchens serving seasonal treats from around the world.