12 Days of Christmas in Louisiana

Louisiana knows how to throw a party, and the holiday festivities are no exception. From ice skating to fireworks, visits with Santa and so much more, there is no shortage of fun to be had this season.

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The official Louisiana Travel blogging team.
Mr. Bingle, a New Orleans tradition at Celebration in the Oaks

Mr. Bingle, a New Orleans tradition at Celebration in the Oaks


Christmas Boat Parade

Christmas in Roseland - Shreveport

Christmas in Roseland

With the extensive list of holiday festivities around Louisiana, figuring out how you want to celebrate can almost be overwhelming! We’re here to help you navigate with a guide that highlights just some of the best events in every corner of the state.

  1. Celebrate one of Louisiana’s longest-running Christmas traditions – the Natchitoches Christmas Festival. Each year, downtown Natchitoches transforms into a holiday wonderland with hundreds of thousands of colored lights and set pieces. The festival was previously ranked as the 3rd “Best Holiday Light Show” behind Rockefeller Center and Disneyland by Yahoo! Travel – it’s a must-see event!
  2. Boat owners can decorate their vessels with Christmas spirit and take part in the Delcambre Boat Parade. No worries if you don’t own a boat, just head down to check out the amazing view as the multitude of boats twinkle with Christmas adornments.
  3. Stop by the Sarepta Christmas Festival and warm up with a bowl of chili at the chili cook-off, take a stroll by the car show and enjoy live entertainment.
  4. If you’re a history buff, check out Mile Branch Pioneer Christmas in Franklinton. Pioneer Christmas kicks off with a parade of horse-drawn buggies, wagons and horseback riders. It also features period Christmas decorations, demonstrations and clothing, arts, crafts and antiques. Sip on some sassafras tea or hot apple cider while listening to local musicians.
  5. Soak up all the holiday fun at the Light up the Lake Christmas Festival in Lake Charles – featuring a Christmas parade, a Christmas tree lighting ceremony and the lighted boat parade later that same evening.
  6. Looking for the perfect holiday selfie for the ‘gram? Stop by the famous Roosevelt Hotel in New Orleans for a look at their wildly popular, ornate decorations – the perfect backdrop for a photo-op.
  7. While in NOLA, plan a trip to Celebration in the Oaks, where City Park is transformed into 25 acres of dazzling Christmas fun. The Park, Botanical Garden, Storyland and Carousel Gardens Amusement Park are loaded with hundreds of thousands of lights to create a winter wonderland in the Big Easy.
  8. Head over to New Roads for "A New Roads Christmas" – featuring carnival rides, food booths and pictures with Santa. After a parade rolls through downtown, you’ll see the Christmas tree lighting and hear the cheerful sounds of caroling.
  9. Opelousas lights up for the holidays each year at the Lighting of the Village. This family-friendly event includes a petting zoo, ornament making station, photos with Santa, traditional choir music, and of course the official "pulling of the switch" which will illuminate thousands of lights in the historic village. 
  10. Help light the way for Papa Noel this Christmas Eve and celebrate with Christmas Bonfires on the Mississippi River levee in New Orleans Plantation Country.
  11. Want to celebrate all season long across North Louisiana? Take a trip down the Holiday Trail of Lights!
  12. Want to experience the wild side of the holiday season? Visit the Audubon Zoo Lights in New Orleans. There is live entertainment daily, a twinkle tunnel, gumdrop hop and so much more!