Top 14 Most Splendid Christmas Lights and Illuminations in the World
Think of Christmas and you’ll probably think of a tree, festooned with a thousand sparkling bulbs, or a wintry street illuminated by the glow of a million twinkling lights. Nothing says Christmas like a room or garden bedecked with glittering lights in festive colours. But why not supersize your Xmas for 2018 and head out in search of the most impressive, most splendid Christmas lights the world has to offer. Luckily we’ve done all the hard work for you, here are the world’s top most memorable Christmas illuminations.
1. Tokyo, Japan
The Winter Illuminations in Tokyo are a fantastic, city-wide competition for the best display of festive lights each year. As each district goes head to head in the battle for the prize, hotfoot it to Shibuya and Roppongi for the finest examples of what Tokyo can do with a few million lights.
2. Salerno, Italy
Luci d’Artista is a festival of lights and Christmas activities in the romantic city of Salerno, Italy. This year’s theme is marine life, so expect light shows depicting waves, fish, shells and sea creatures. There is also a ferris wheel with panoramic views of the action in the Piazza della Concordia.
3. Canberra, Australia
Canberra has long been the host of exemplary Christmas illuminations. In 2014 they set the world record for the most lights on a Christmas tree. They crammed 518,838 onto its boughs. Head to Glebe Park to see what showstopper they come up with this year.
4. Monterrey, Mexico
Luztopia is Monterrey’s annual Christmas celebration featuring lights and illuminated figures spanning nearly two miles of the city. This year, more than 250 giant structures standing up to 8 metres tall will greet visitors as night falls. This year’s theme is Flora and Fauna, so plenty of amazing animals are gathered to welcome the Christmas spirit to Central America.
5. Newport Beach, Californa, USA
This town hosts a glittering Christmas Boat Parade, which will this year be celebrating its 110th anniversary. Yachts, boats and kayaks are bedecked in festive cheer before parading down the river to the delight of the millions who gather to witness the spectacle each year.
6. Copenhagen, Denmark
The Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen are a Christmas tradition that attracts locals and tourists alike. Those dark Danish nights are illuminated by a dramatic light show which needs to be seen to be believed. With parades, Christmas stalls and a special display at the lake, this is one of the most iconic Christmas illuminations in the world.
7. New York City, USA
Christmas in New York ain’t Christmas in New York without the 78-foot tree outside the Rockefeller Center. It takes 5 miles of lights to decorate the enormous tree, which presides over the famous ice skating rink which has been erected each year since 1933. Almost as famous is the glamorous Swarovski star that adorns the highest bough.
8. Paris, France
The iconic Champs-Elysées receives the Christmas treatment at the start of December each year. There are 200 trees which are brought out to line the street, lit of course with thousand upon thousand of LED lights. Take the time to check out Europe’s largest Christmas market whilst you’re there for a truly magical festive experience.
9. Stockholm, Sweden
With a Christmas tree that dwarves even the Rockefeller Center’s effort, Stockholm is surely one of the most festive cities in the world. Standing at 120 foot tall, the tree is the centrepiece for a riot of light and colour bedecking the city throughout December. And perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to catch Mother Earth’s own contribution, the Northern Lights.
10. Lisbon, Portugal
This Christmas Lisbon will be transformed by over two million bulbs, a giant tree, and multimedia installations in preparation for the arrival of Papai Noel. Focused on the picturesque old town, a nighttime walk through the city will elicit gasps of admiration at the wonderful displays. In the Parque Eduardo VII, children will be spoiled by a festive wonderland featuring an ice skating rink, a big wheel and a chance to visit the big guy himself.
11. Medellin, Colombia
One of the biggest Christmas illumination festivals in the world began here in 1965 and shows no sign of abating in 2018. With big brand sponsors by Colombian utility companies and over 60,000 visitors, the Alumbrado runs from November 30 through to January 7.
12. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
As the home of Rio carnival, we suspected that the citizens of this vibrant city knew how to party, and their Christmas display does not let their reputation down. With a giant, floating Christmas tree weighing 542 tonnes and standing 85 metres tall, the city needs a stash of 3 million lights to set it aglow. A raucous firework display marks the switch on, really bringing the razzle-dazzle to Christmas fun. Because this is Rio, tropical trees are often trimmed up to fit in with the festive theme.
13. London, United Kingdom
The Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew near London hosts an annual spectacle that sells out way in advance. For 2018, the show’s sixth year is set to be its best yet. Lucky ticket holders will walk a wintery trail embellished with over a million glittering lights and thousands of laser beams. A new attraction for this year is the Laser Garden, where refracted light meets nature’s bough in a beautiful and festive play of light and colour. Other highlights include the lake of hundreds of shining boats creating a stunning reflection in the water, the Fire Garden, and the evening’s finale: a light show at the pond. Serving mulled wine and hot chocolate to the festive fans, only the biggest Scrooge could emerge from this and not feel Christmassy.
14. Orchard Road, Singapore
The 2.8 kilometre stretch of Singaporean boulevard is transformed into a festive grotto of light and colour in December. Seducing shoppers with the twinkle of lights for 35 years, 2018’s display features popular Disney characters, the first time a sponsor has been involved. Little ones will love the themed sections, drawn from the movies Frozen and Toy Story, and featuring characters from Mickey Mouse & Friends as well as beloved Disney Princesses.