Lighting up winter in the desert

In Los Angeles, you’re probably not going to experience the frigid temperatures and heavy snowfall of the East Coast, but that’s no reason to miss out on the holiday cheer of the winter season. Regardless of whether or not you celebrate a winter holiday, the City of Angels has many bright lights and spectacles to get you feeling like you’re walking in a winter wonderland rather than baking in desert heat.

  1. Los Angeles Zoo Lights and Reindeer Romp
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When all the animals fall asleep and cozy up in their sanctuaries, you can snuggle up in a sweater and visit the Los Angeles Zoo in Griffith Park to witness a winter wonderland of lights. Once you enter the zoo, the bushes, trees and even lampposts are all wrapped up with dazzling lights that lead you to the main exhibits. As you walk through the zoo, you will find yourself immersed in a world or colorful light sculptures depicting zoo animals and winter fun. Whether you’re walking through a maze of light or sitting in the café enjoying a hot chocolate while you take in the displays, you’re bound to have a great trip to the Los Angeles Zoo.

Price: $13 Adult Tickets

Open: Daily through Jan. 3, 6 – 10 p.m.

  1. The Grove – Christmas tree photos and falling snow
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Don’t be fooled — this outdoor shopping mall isn’t just a place to pick up your last-minute gifts. It’s the perfect place to spend an entire evening while taking in the winter festivities.

With multiple sit-in restaurants and quick meal options, The Grove offers a wide variety of dinner options before you begin marathon shopping and looking at the lights display. As you finish dinner, you can stroll down the main street at the center of the shopping center to view a hundred foot tall Christmas tree. If you arrive at 7 p.m. or 8 p.m., you can even experience snowfall with their daily snowflake attraction. Other holiday entertainment such as musical performances and dancers are also available at certain times in the shopping center.

Price: Free!

Open: 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. most days

  1. Street Lights on Rodeo Drive and more!
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If the ordinary glamor of Beverly Hills and Rodeo Drive don’t entice you enough, the holiday decorations and lights certainly will have you driving over immediately! The streets will be lined with holiday lights and decorations as a shuttle takes you down the street with Santa and Mrs. Claus on board.

Get in your last-minute holiday shopping while taking in the spectacular lights. You might also get the chance to walk in on numerous musical performances that occur throughout the holiday season at Two Rodeo or the Paley Center for Media. If the lights don’t capture your attention, the shopping and entertainment certainly will.

Price: Varies with attraction

Open: Varies with attraction