Holiday Festival of Lights
best christmas lights in south carolina

Thanksgiving 2014 my family got to spend the evening driving through the James Island County Park Holiday Festival of Lights. This corporate sponsored event featured over 750 displays and 2 million lights. This year is the 25th anniversary for the festival. We have never seen a light show so spectacular!

When I talked my husband into leaving our warm beach condo to go see Christmas lights I don’t think either of us really knew the treat we were in for. We paid our $15 admission to get in (the admission is $15 per car with up to 15 guests, 16-30 guest is $40 and 31+ guest is $100). As soon as we started driving through the loop around the park we were blown away at the animated led displays.

The first animation that caught our eye was a golfing santa. Santa swung his club, hit the ball and the ball went flying into the hair for a hole in one. Right across from that is a beautiful show of lights displaying the Arthur Ravenel Jr Bridge with an animated led dolphin jumping out of the water next to the bridge.

festival of lights

We continued to drive through a variety of themes of lights including dinosaurs, marine life, candy land, space and so much more. There was so much to see that we decided to drive through a second time (once you pay your admission you can drive around as many times as you would like). Our second time around our kids begged us to get out of the car in the 40 degree weather to walk around Santa’s Village.

I’m so glad the kids talked us into getting out to walk around. One of the first things we walked up on before we got to Santa’s Village was an amazing light show choreographed to Mannheim Steamroller. This show absolutely blew us away. I’ve included a short little clip of the light show. The video and the pictures I’m posting don’t even come close to doing this justice. And in all honesty the pictures I personally took aren’t even worth posting so I am using the pictures from the James Island County Park Web Site. This is something that you truly have to see in person.

Along with the lights, there were tons of great activities for the kids including marshmallow roasts, carousel rides, visits with Santa, train ride, sand sculptures and so much more. If I hadn’t been so cold that evening we probably would have stayed until they closed.


I highly encourage anyone who is going to be in the Charleston area this winter to visit the James Island County Park Holiday Festival of Lights. It is well worth the drive and money. For more information visit their web site and like their Facebook page.

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11 Comments

  1. So beautiful! I would love to see this in person!

  2. The Christmas light shows are amazing. We have one near where I live and we try to go every year. It is beautiful and fascinating to see!

  3. My sister may be moving there soon, I’ll forward this to her! We love looking at lights!

  4. I’ve always wanted to visit South Carolina, but man does this make me want to go at Christmas-time!

  5. What an amazing light show. I definitely would love to see.

  6. I haven’t visited South Carolina in about 7 years. It would be nice to visit to experience this.

  7. That sounds like such a fun event to attend as a family. It is nice to have some things to do during the holidays.

  8. Oh it’s this time of the year when attractions like this would cheer everyone up! Would love to visit if I have the chance!

  9. I love a good Christmas light show. Sometimes we just load up in the car and drive around looking at different light. My daughters love it! I can’t wait for holidays, I’m so excited!

  10. Just watched your Christmas light show, Looks like it was an amazing show.

  11. So festive . Such a fun time of the year this is.

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