The Best Christmas Lights Near Dayton, Ohio {2023}


As fall darkens into winter, one of the best things about early sunsets is the chance to explore more Christmas lights displays in Ohio. If you live near Dayton or are planning to visit this holiday season, make sure you set aside some time to explore these Christmas lights near Dayton, Ohio. From homegrown holiday light displays to massive public projects, Southwest Ohio has a ton of great Christmas lights to check out!

Christmas Lights Displays Near Dayton Ohio

Looking for more holidays lights in Ohio? Check out this list of the Best Christmas Lights Displays in Ohio!

Christmas Lights Near Dayton Ohio

For many, visiting Christmas lights displays in Ohio has become a family tradition. Gather your friends and family to create new memories at one of these festive Christmas lights near Dayton, Ohio!

Dayton Holiday Festival

The 51st Dayton Holiday Festival takes over Courthouse Square the day after Thanksgiving with the Grande Illumination Tree Lighting Ceremony and the Dayton Children’s Parade Spectacular in Lights. The nighttime parade features more than 100,000 lights on decorative seasonal floats. A fun evening of holiday entertainment and activities including live entertainment, live reindeer, Gingerbread House contest, a holiday village and so much more! This free event draws families from all over the Dayton Metro area and festivities continue throughout the holiday season.

When: November 24, 2023 from 3-8pm, lights are on display throughout the holiday season.
Where: Dayton Courthouse Square – 23 North Main St., Dayton, OH 45402
Admission Cost: FREE

Dayton Downtown Jingle Lights

Drive through Christmas lights are the best because you can enjoy them from the warmth of the car! At the Dayton Downtown Jingle Lights you can tune your radio 105.3 FM to find music synchronized to the lights, with different nights featuring themed music like holiday classics or holiday pop favorites. This magical display winds through a dozen downtown Dayton blocks and is completely free of charge! Along the way, you can also partake in the Elf on the Shelf hunt and enjoy Rike’s holiday window displays.

When: November 24, 2023 – January 1, 2024; Nightly
Where: East Monument Avenue and Main Street in Downtown Dayton
Admission Cost: FREE

Pyramid Hill Lights

From mid-November through early January, the Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park in Hamilton is transformed into a magical holiday experience. As visitors drive along a 2.5-mile route through the park, accompanied by an app-delivered soundtrack by the Butler Philharmonic Orchestra, they are treated to several different winter scenes. From Grinch’s Greenland to Bethlehem, the lights, projection, and music make this one of the best drive-through Christmas light displays in Ohio! Of course, the whole show culminates in a trip to the North Pole.

When: November 17 – December 31, 2023; Tuesday – Thursday 6-9pm, Friday – Sunday 6-10pm, Closed Monday
Where: Pyramid Hill- 1763 Hamilton Cleves Rd., Hamilton, OH 45013
Admission Cost: $25 per vehicle

Woodland Lights

Just south of Dayton, Washington Township has been lighting up Countryside Park for more than 30 years! Woodland Lights is a local’s favorite display of Christmas lights near Dayton, Ohio. From mid-November through the end of December, visitors can explore dozens of vignettes and lights displayed along a half-mile walking path. The lights cover ten acres, which can also be seen from the four-car passenger train. Other features of Woodland Lights include photos with Santa, horse-drawn carriage rides, concessions, and pet-friendly nights.

When: November 17-19, 24-26, December 1-3, 8-10, 14-23, 26-30 (lights only) 2023 from 6-9pm
Where: Countryside Park- 895 Miamisburg Centerville Rd, Dayton, OH 45459
Admission Cost: $9.00 Ages 3+, Children under 2 are free

Looking for more Ohio holiday fun? Read The Best Christmas Attractions in Ohio.

Carillon Christmas Lights
Carillon Christmas, Photo Courtesy of Carillon Historical Park

Carillon Christmas

Carillon Historical Park is a fantastic place to visit year-round, but it’s extra special during the weeks leading up to Christmas. The 65-acre park is magically transformed into a dazzling holiday light display, complete with the 200’ tall Tree of Light. The park remains open each day, and at 5:00, the Christmas lights start to twinkle. You can visit with Santa, write letters to Santa, and partake in storytelling hour each night. Concessions are also available throughout the park, so you can warm up with hot cocoa or cider after strolling through the grounds.

When: November 21 – December 30, 2023; Sunday – Thursday 5-9pm, Friday – Saturday 5-10pm
Where: 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton, OH 45409
Admission Cost: $14.00 Ages 18-59, $12.00 Ages 60+, $10.00 Ages 3-17, Children under 2 are free

Christmas Glow at Land of Illusion

This Middletown Adventure Park always has something fun going on, and the winter holidays are no exception! As the Halloween Scream Park winds down, they start getting ready for Christmas Glow. The two-mile drive-through light display is just the tip of the iceberg at this December destination. See nearly four million lights from the warmth of your car. They also have a petting zoo, gift shop, fire pits, concessions, and Santa’s workshop. At the center of the Christmas Village, the 45-foot lighted tree is the perfect backdrop for your family photos.

When: Nightly November 22 – December 30, 2023 from 6-10pm; Closed November 28-30 and Christmas Day, Drive Thru Only December 26-30.
Where: Land of Illusion Adventure Park – 8762 Thomas Road, Middletown, OH 45042
Admission Cost: $12.00 per person

Christmas Light Spectacular at Cedar Springs Pavilion

Another destination for Christmas lights near Dayton is the Cedar Springs Pavilion in Tipp City. Just ten miles north of Dayton, this outdoor event space and wedding venue recently got into the holiday lights game. The grounds have been transformed into dozens of holiday scenes set to choreographed music. From dancing fountains, igloos, Candy Cane Lane, and the Grinch’s Whoville, there are so many fun things to see here. Most nights, you’ll find Santa Claus ready and willing to take photos and wishlists. Of course, it wouldn’t be an Ohio holiday destination without hot cocoa from Santa’s Snack Shop to keep you warm.

When: November 24 – December 28, 2022: Nightly from 6-9pm TBD
Where: Cedar Springs Pavilion – 7951 South County Rd. 25A, Tipp City, Ohio 45371
Admission Cost: $10.00 per person, children under 3 are free

Light Up Middletown

Another fantastic Southwest Ohio Christmas attraction is Light Up Middletown, a drive-through Christmas lights display near Dayton, Ohio. For 20+ years, this annual event has lit up downtown Middletown and raised funds for city parks. Displays are put up by volunteers affectionately known as the Grandpa Gang. Visits with Santa are often part of the festivities, as well as a hot air balloon glow. This fun, FREE event is very popular, so plan ahead and allow plenty of time to explore these Christmas lights near Dayton.

When: 6-10pm every night, Thanksgiving through New Year’s Eve
Where: Smith Park- 500 Tytus Avenue, Middletown, OH 45042
Admission Cost: Donation

Looking for the best places to visit for Christmas in Ohio? Read Magical Christmas Towns in Ohio.

Clifton Mill Christmas Lights
Legendary Lights of Historic Clifton Mill

Legendary Lights of Historic Clifton Mill

This award-winning Christmas light display near Dayton is well worth the 30 minute trip out to Yellow Springs. The Clifton Mill and cute town of Yellow Springs are both excellent destinations any time of year, but Christmas is extra special, with over four million lights on display! For 35 years, Ohio families have enjoyed the Clifton Mill Christmas Lights, which now includes a synchronized light and music show on the covered bridge. The display also includes Santa’s Workshop, where you can watch Santa make toys and load them onto his sleigh. There’s also a concession offering soup, sandwiches, sweets, and hot cocoa.

When: November 24 – December 30, 2023; Nightly 6-9pm
Where: Historic Clifton Mill- 75 Water St. Clifton, OH 45316
Admission Cost: $15.00 Ages 4+; Children under 3 are free

ParkLights at Caesar Ford Park

Located in Xenia, 25 minutes east of Dayton, Caesar Ford Park lights up for the holidays. This drive-through light display features a Winter Wonderland, North Pole Car Show, Winter Farm and more. Be sure to slow the car down so the kids can wave to Santa as you drive by the North Pole! ParkLights at Caesar Ford Park is open nightly in December and admission is free.

When: December 1-31, 2023; Nightly 6-9pm
Where: Caesar Ford Park – 520 South Stringtown Rd., Xenia, OH 45385
Admission Cost: FREE

Holiday Lights at Lost Creek Reserve

Just 25 minutes south of Dayton, the Miami County Park District transforms Lost Creek Reserve into a winter wonderland of lights and displays. These drive-through Christmas lights near Dayton extend for 1.25 miles past illuminated landscapes and over 60 light displays, including some fun animated displays! This fun holiday event runs weekends from Thanksgiving to Christmas, with some additional weekdays added throughout the month.

When: Friday through Sunday 6-9pm, November 25-December 23, 2023; Bonus Days December 18-21 from 6-9pm
Where: Lost Creek Reserve – 2385 State Route 41, Troy, OH 45373
Admission Cost: $10.00 per vehicle, cash only

Fort St. Clair’s Whispering Christmas

Just 35 minutes west of Dayton, the town of Eaton hosts Fort St. Clair’s Whispering Christmas. These Christmas lights near Dayton started over 30 years ago with 800 lights, now visitors will see over two million lights! Best of all, the event is free, although a $5 per car donation is appreciated!

When: November 24 – December 31, 2023; Nightly from 6-9:30pm
Where: 135 Camden Road, Eaton OH 45320
Admission Cost: $5.00 donation per vehicle

The Christmas in Morrow, Ohio
The Christmas Ranch, Photo Courtesy of The Christmas Ranch

Christmas Ranch

Just 50 miles south of Dayton lies one of the most famous Christmas light shows in Ohio! The Christmas Ranch has been featured on HGTV and Good Morning America, as well as many local and Midwest outlets. A portion of all proceeds goes to various children’s charities, so you can feel good about supporting this unique Ohio Christmas light show. This fun destination includes Christmas shops, Santa’s Bakery, pictures with Santa, and train and wagon rides.

When: November 17 – December 23, 2023; Check Website For Hours; Closed Thanksgiving Day
Where: The Christmas Ranch – 3205 S. Waynesville Road, Morrow, OH 45152
Admission Cost: $37.00 per vehicle; $47 per vehicle with 10+ passengers; Save $5 when you make reservations online

Christmas Nights of Lights at Coney Island

Some Christmas lights are worth an hour’s drive to Cincinnati, including the Christmas Light Show at Coney Island. For ten weeks from mid-November to early January, this Cincinnati amusement park celebrates the holidays in style. Over a million LED lights set the stage for a two-mile drive-through experience. The lights are synchronized to Christmas music that you can stream through your car stereo.

When: November 10 – December 31, 2023; Nightly from dusk through 10pm
Where: Coney Island – 6201 Kellogg Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45230
Admission Cost: $30 per carload (up to 8 people)

PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

Another amazing Christmas show worth the drive from Dayton is the PNC Festival of Lights at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. Celebrating 40 years as a Cincinnati Christmas tradition, the zoo dresses up in over four million LED lights! The festival includes light shows, a puppet show, a North Pole Express train ride, and snack stands selling s’mores! It’s also a great chance to visit Santa at Santa’s Village. Best of all, admission is included with your zoo admission, so you can enjoy the animals by day and the holiday lights at night.

When: November 17, 2023 – January 7, 2024; Sunday – Thursday 4-9pm, Friday & Saturday 4-10pm
Where: Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden- 3400 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH 45220
Admission Cost: Various ticket prices depending on date and time you visit, check website for pricing

Want to view Christmas lights from the comfort of your vehicle? Read Enchanting Drive Through Christmas Lights In Ohio


Christmas Lights Near Dayton Ohio

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