Tampa during the holidays can be a novel experience for many visitors who are escaping the cold and snow, but sometimes it can be a struggle to get into the Christmas spirit when you’re sitting on the beach. Luckily, Busch Gardens Tampa has the perfect way for families to rekindle that holiday feeling with their annual Christmas Town event.
Stepping onto the property, you're immediately immersed in a holiday wonderland full of the sights, sounds and smells of Christmas. The light displays are simply dazzling with the park covered in over one million twinkling lights, and decorated with countless ornaments and decorations throughout.
Enjoy over one million twinkling lights, festive performances and holiday shopping at Christmas Town — Photo courtesy of Busch Gardens Tampa
Christmas Town Village is the heart of the holiday action featuring beautifully decorated Christmas trees and vendors selling holiday gifts and treats. Enjoy frothy hot chocolate, creamy eggnog, cookies and candy canes.
Don’t be surprised if you run into your favorite Christmas characters like Frosty the Snowman and Santa’s elves, or groups of carolers that will serenade you with your favorite festive tunes.
Watch the kid’s eyes light up when you take them to the North Pole to visit Santa. They'll love taking a tour through his adorable home and getting a photo as he takes a break from his holiday preparations. Lines can be long for Santa’s House, so a popular time-saving feature is to sign in for a pager and approximate time to return.
Another option to brighten the evening is attending one of the park’s popular Christmas-themed shows including a perennial favorite, the spectacular Christmas on Ice. Several are offered and show times will be listed on your park guide that you should pick up as you enter. You’ll want to arrive early as these shows fill up quickly.
In addition to the holiday attractions and activities, guests can experience many of the park’s thrilling rides including Cheetah Hunt, SheiKra, and the newest ride, Falcon’s Fury, the tallest freestanding drop tower in North America.
While most of the park’s wildlife will be resting for the evening, visitors will have an opportunity to visit one of Busch Gardens' newest attractions, Penguin Point. These African Penguins are a treat to watch as they engage in underwater acrobatics. In the wild, these quirky creatures can dive up to 200 feet and reach speeds of up to 15 mph.
Christmas Town is available with regular park admission, with the lights turning on at dark and park closing times extended to 10:00 pm. The event will run 20 dates this season: November 27-28, December 4-5, 11-12 & 18-31.