If I had the time and money, I’d spend every single minute from the day after November until Christmas Eve touring historic homes decorated for Christmas, driving through light displays and visiting live nativities. I love the Christmas season! If you’re like me, you may want to visit all of those displays too, but can’t seem to fit it all in so I’ve narrowed things down a bit and I’ve come up with three must visit holiday destinations in the Midwest.
3 MUST Visit Holiday Destinations in the Midwest
Frankenmuth is a popular destination any time of year, but it really shines during the holiday season. Guests travel from all over to shop at Bronner’s, the World’s Largest Christmas Store, which offers acres of nativities, stockings, Christmas trees, lights, and ornaments in every theme imaginable.
You’ll notice that Bronner’s is not just a place to shop. The 27-acre complex is decorated inside and out. Visitors will find oversized ornaments, Santa, and a nativity outdoors for fun photo ops with the family. Plus, each night, you’ll find the parking lot comes alive with Christmas lights and carols.
Before leaving Bronner’s make a stop at the Silent Night Chapel which is a replica of the chapel in Austria where the hymn “Silent Night” was sung for the first time. You’ll find Bavarian style buildings of downtown Frankenmuth, a short drive down Main Street, beautifully decorated for the holidays with specialty shops where you can find some great gifts for those on your shopping list if they’ve been nice.
Visit http://www.frankenmuth.org/ for more information.
Santa Claus, Indiana
How could you NOT visit a destination with the name of Santa Claus for Christmas? Though this town offers year-round fun, it really comes to life for the holidays. Visitors can shop for ornaments at the Santa Claus Christmas Store (though not as large as Bronner’s), purchase treats for your stockings in Santa’s Candy Castle and talk to an elf when you log into the “North Pole”, or stop at the Santa Claus Museum and Village and write a letter to Santa in the one-room schoolhouse, and stroll the grounds to see the fully restored 22-foot tall Santa Claus statue that is dedicated to children everywhere.
Visit http://santaclausind.org/ for more information.
Each November, Cambridge in southeastern Ohio is transformed into a scene from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and lasts throughout Christmas. Wheeling Avenue in downtown Cambridge becomes Dickens Victorian Village with over 180 life-sized figures and nearly 100 scenes which are best seen through a self-guided walking tour or via trolley rides that are offered on select weekends.
Begin your tour in the historic Gomber home that houses the Welcome Center and Curiosity Shoppe. Dress in vintage period clothing and get your photo taken with the Charles Dickens mannequin and purchase souvenirs.
Visit http://www.dickensvictorianvillage.com/# for more information.
© 2016, Tonya Prater. All rights reserved.