Your presents are wrapped, you’ve trimmed your tree and stuffed your stockings (and your face, oops). Now it’s time to get festive and spread that holiday cheer! We’ve asked around and collected our favorite places to spend the remaining days of December while waiting for the countdown to Christmas.
Where to Watch Your Favorite Christmas Movies
1. Alamo Drafthouse at the Ritz
Nothing brings back Christmas memories like classic Christmas movies. Lucky for us, we have the Alamo Drafthouse at the Ritz! Located on 6th street, this is the perfect place for a date night or a fun time with friends. This theatre features movie parties including Christmas favorites like Elf and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. What’s a movie party you might say? Think props, contest, interactive fun, and a snowball throwing party?! Count. Us. In! Check out the times and dates that this is going on before it’s too late via the link above!
2. Holiday Films at the Paramount
Catch the classic Christmas film “It’s a Wonderful Life” at the historic Paramount theatre on 6th Street, December 17th on 35 mm film for that old time feeling! There are also other holiday events here such as Christmas on Congress this Friday and Bruce and Kelly’s Annual Holiday Shindig on Saturday. Bound to warm your heart and bring in that holiday cheer!
Where to Drink in Christmas Spirit
3. Miracle on 5th Street at the Eleanor
This magical pop-up bar is truly a gem, and we are so excited that the Eleanor & Roosevelt Room decided to put this together for the city of Austin this holiday season. The building has Chicago lofty brick vibes written all over it and will instantly give you all the Christmas feels. Make sure to check out the calendar on the link listed above for hours and days that Miracle is open to the public!
4. Lala’s Little Nugget
Founded in 1972, this is an Austin classic Christmas bar that’s opened year round. Nestled in the Crestview and North Burnet neighborhoods, this dive bar is bound to steal your heart and bring out your inner elf. Check out their incredible drinks (Reindeer Water and Santa’s Irish Coffee just to name a few) and happy hours on their website. Make sure to attend their Ugly Sweater Christmas party this weekend to celebrate the spirit of giving! If you’re as obsessed with Christmas as we are, this is the perfect spot to be at all season long!
Where to Check Out Christmas Lights
5. Trail of Lights
Perhaps one of the most celebrated Austin Christmas experiences of all times! Featuring lights, delicious food trucks, hot chocolate, and more all in the epic Zilker Park overlooking the Austin skyline! This is a perfect event for all ages and certainly a wonderful place to take a date, group of friends or that special someone. Plus, you’ll get a little bit of exercise and enjoy that cold weather that Austin rarely has!
6. Mozarts Christmas Light Show
Right on beautiful Lake Austin, lies a charming coffee shop called Mozart’s Coffee Roasters with indoor and outdoor seating. Not only does this place have warm drinks and a yummy bakery full of treats, but it also has a Christmas light show and music running every hour for the rest of the holiday season up until New Years Day! This is another free event and a magical place to go and experience the holiday season.
7. Winter Wonderland at Circuit of the Americas
Brand new, and so much to do! This is the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit and have some fun with friends and family. Circuit of the Americas has Winter Wonderland going on until December 30th! Enjoy a skating rink, human snow globe, tunnel of lights, a petting zoo, Santa’s workshop, shops, food, and much more. For ticket information and more check out the link above! We promise you won’t have a dull moment attending this event.
Where to Experience Timeless Christmas Tales
8. Ballet Austin’s The Nutcracker
Sword fights. Dancing dolls. And Sugar plum fairies. The 55th annual production of The Nutcracker returns to Austin to transports you into the Land of Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets. Be dazzled by all the colorful characters, music, and beautiful classical dance as the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Nutcracker Prince reunite in this holiday classic.
9. A Christmas Carol
An oldie, but goodies! And definitely one of ours and Austin’s seasonal favorite, A Christmas Carol, follows Ebenezer Scrooge’s journey with three ghostly spirits as he finds the true meaning of Christmas! Bah! Humbug!
Where to Go Ice Skating
10. Chaparral Ice
Enjoy a little blade-to-the-ice action and let your troubles melt away at Chaparral ice. This indoor rink is open year round and offers discounts for group skaters, so THE MORE THE MERRIER! Definitely come back in January and February for free skate and specialty classes! We love anything free!
11. Ice Rink at the Whole Foods Plaza Rooftop
Whole Foods Plaza Rooftop is the most well-known ice skating rink in Austin. The skating rink is on the ROOFTOP and opens from November to January, so take in the downtown views as you glide across the smooth bed of ice while you still can! Maybe even catch Santa taking a few laps around the rink!