Best Christmas Lights and Awesomely Decorated Homes around Los Angeles

Whether your holiday of choice is Christmas, Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, or Kwanzaa there is a timeless joy to be found in taking a spin around the holiday light displays. And while the glammy glitz of The Biltmore is always fun, there is a particular magic to those over-the-top displays created by someone's (if thankfully not your) next-door neighbor. Even better is a whole street made up of nothing but this kind of neighbor, and we know where a few of those are.

Where To See Holiday Lights In and Around Boston

Magical winter wonderlands filled with lighted displays, twinkling trees, and sparkling scenes: we've rounded up some of the best light displays in and around Boston. Some can be viewed by car, some by train, others on foot—there are even tour buses to take you to some of the neighborhoods that are really decked out for the holiday season.

Best Public Holiday Light Displays in Houston

There's something magical about Christmas lights that make the holidays come alive (even in Houston when it's 80 degrees on Thanksgiving). For the best over-the-top light displays around town, check out one of the locales or events below. 

Breakfast with Santa for Kids and Families in Westchester

Though Santa is busy preparing for his famous ride on Christmas Eve, he still somehow has time to break bread (or pancakes) with children in Westchester this holiday season. These cozy get-togethers have become increasingly popular, typically featuring a full breakfast and holiday activity, with added perks at some. The best part? Quality time and photo-op with St. Nick.

We’ve rounded up some top picks for Breakfast with Santa throughout Westchester to help you spread some holiday cheer. Advance registration is either required or recommended, so don't delay. And don't forget to bring your wish list! 

If you're looking for more holiday activities, check out our coverage of holiday tree lightings, performances of The Nutcracker and other holiday shows—all happening in Westchester.

Dyker Lights: This Brooklyn Nabe Comes Alive with Holiday Spirit

For years I had been hearing about the awesome Christmas displays in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn. I'd seen plenty of videos and photos online. But once I saw those jaw-dropping sights in person, I knew visiting "Dyker Lights" would become a family holiday tradition.

Living in upper Manhattan, Dyker Heights is a serious schlep. It's really not doable via public transportation, especially at night with kids in tow. One year I hitched a ride with a neighbor, but the following I decided to play tourist and go on A Slice of Brooklyn's Christmas Lights guided bus tour. Even though my daughter and I saw many of the same houses, our visits were quite different. If you're considering taking the kids to Dyker Heights this holiday season but are wondering about the best way to go, here's how the two experiences compare.

Best Places to Take Pictures with Santa in New Jersey

Santa Claus is coming to town, and he's ready for his close-up. From simple setups to elaborate events, there's no shortage of opportunities for your little elves to pose with the big guy. We've rounded up our favorites, and there's something for every budget. Want more QT with jolly St. Nick? Book a breakfast with Santa. And for even more seasonal activities, check out our Holiday Fun Guide.

Santa HQ at Queens Center: Interactive Santa Fun for NYC Kids

Queens families looking to avoid a trip into the city to see Santa have a brand-new option in 2016. HGTV has set up one of its high-tech and immersive Santa HQ experiences in the Queens Center Mall, complete with a Santa visit, but also augmented reality add-ons, selfie stations, and more kid fun.

If you're anything like me, it's hard to maintain that holly-jolly holiday feeling as you stand in a long line surrounded by kids who have had one too many candy canes. That's why Santa HQ at Queens Center in Elmhurst is like a Christmas gift for parents. It's fun and manageable, stars a super-authentic Santa and Mrs. Claus, and—perhaps best of all—takes reservations! 

Santa Express: Christmas Train Rides for Kids in PA, DE & NJ

There is something about trains that evokes nostalgia at Christmastime.  It could be stirring up childhood memories of building a model train set under the twinkling tree lights. Maybe it is a reminder of that "coming home for the holidays" idea, where folks would arrive at the train station, arms filled with Christmas packages for family at home.

Whatever the reason might be, many railroads in the tri-state area hold events to bring back that old-fashioned holiday tradition. At many of these special outings, families can ride a real locomotive with Santa Claus, hear Christmas stories, sing carols, sip hot chocolate and admire the views of the passing countryside. Children are even invited to wear their pajamas at some of these events!  We have rounded up a list of railroads hosting holiday-themed trains of all kinds. Some of these are located more than an hour's drive from Philadelphia, but can make for a fantastic holiday outing. All aboard for some Christmas fun!

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