Christmas Lights Drive - Holiday Date Idea

The first Christmas that we were married, I had a fun and low key idea for a date night tradition that I hoped we would continue for years to come. Rather than walking around somewhere to look at a Christmas lights display, I thought it would more enjoyable to drive around one night and see as many different lights as possible. That first year, we stopped to grab a cup of hot chocolate and drove up into some of the wealthier neighborhoods on the mountain, listening to Christmas music while we looked at their lights. We had such a good time that we’ve made that drive every year since.

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Christmas lights drive

A few years in a row, we’ve taken the kids with us and involved them in our tradition. But as often as possible, we like to go out on our own and make this a date night activity that we enjoy, just the two of us. Because our kids love Christmas lights, we’ll take detours and longer routes home from places to let them see some of the light displays and decked out houses in the area.

I love this date night activity for a lot of reasons! We’re not cold weather people so being able to stay in our vehicle with the seat warmers and heat on is our favorite way to enjoy the sights of Christmas time. This date is festive but doesn’t require lots of planning or perfect timing and can be done in any amount of time that you have. You can sneak away for less than an hour while the kids are spending time with family or book a babysitter and make it a few hours long. But the thing I love the most is that it’s something that removes you from the hustle and bustle of the season and allows you to relax, connect and enjoy each other’s company!

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holiday lights date night

Christmas Lights Drive Date Night

A few ideas to help you make the most of your Christmas lights drive date night:

  • Turn on Christmas music and bring a cup of hot chocolate. We stop by the gas station or one of our favorite places to get hot chocolate and bring a cup with us on our drive. It makes the entire experience feel more festive and makes an every day drive extra special and perfect for date night.

  • Have some ideas of where you want to drive. The first year that we went on this date, we drove aimlessly and looked at whatever lights we could find. Now we know where the best light displays are, whether they’re put on by the city or a neighborhood or house as a great display. There are websites (like Christmas Lights Finder) that can help you find the best houses and displays in your area. We try to have a combination of house with dancing lights set to music, tree lined streets covered in lights, and drive-thru displays put together by larger groups.

  • Bring conversation starters. A laid back drive is the perfect opportunity to connect through conversation. When we’re on a date, we try to talk like we did when we were dating, keeping conversation about the business side of life and our kiddos to a minimum. We try to get to know each other better, dream about the future and reminisce on memorable moments from past years of our relationship. Click here for a few of our favorite meaningful conversation resources.

christmas date ideas

I have an idea of what I’d love this date to look like if we were able to get away for a few hours every single year. I’d love to start with dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. After we ate, we’d climb in the car and drive from one end of our county to the other, hitting all of the best light displays along the way. Halfway through our drive, we’d stop and get hot chocolate to enjoy as we finish our date. Then we’d come home and cuddle up in bed to watch one of our favorite Christmas movies.

Related: Christmas Cookie Decorating Date Night + The Best Sugar Cookie Recipe

holiday traditions

Even if it hasn’t always looked the way we’d like, I’m happy to say that we’ve continued this tradition every year of our marriage and plan to make this date night activity part of our holiday every year for the rest of our lives.

What’s one of your favorite, low-key date night activities to do during the holidays?

A fun an low key tradition for date night during the holidays.