Mention Hersheypark and people automatically think of summer fun and hot days at the park. Not me. Mention Hersheypark and I automatically think of Santa, Christmas music, beautiful lights and hot chocolate by the fire. Why? Because in my opinion, the very best time to visit Hersheypark is for Christmas in Hershey.
Why you may ask? Well, for starters we have done it yearly since we moved from Hershey to Scranton (so about 8 years). For us, it is a break in our busy holiday season to sit back, connect as a family and return “home”. We love to visit Santa and the reindeer and check out all the holiday lights. It is all part of the holiday magic and a tradition that we all look forward to each year.
- Visiting Hersheypark? Read this before you go!
- Hershey Waterworks at the Hershey Lodge
- Visiting the Butterfly Atrium at the Hershey Gardens
Tips for Visiting Christmas in Hershey
Because I have been there so many times, I have some tips to share to help you get the most out of your visit.
Visit during off times–I know that due to school schedules and works schedules it can be tough to find time to visit other than a Saturday but if you can, try and visit during off times in the schedule. Try a Sunday afternoon or plan a surprise visit for your kids on a school night. It will really make a difference in the crowd level. I tend to go during off-times and rarely do we have to wait to get on a ride. Check out the Herhseypark website for the full operating schedule.
Dress in layers and wear comfortable shoes–I like to wear boots when I visit at Christmas time. Boots are comfortable and keep my feet warm and dry. I especially like boots for my kids because once they get cold or wet feet then the fun is over. Layers are important too because the temperature can be unpredictable in November and December and you are doing to want to add or shed layers as the weather changes. Keep in mind that if you are there during the day the temps are going to change rapidly once the sun goes down.
Rent a stroller— I have rented a stroller for my four year old the past two times we have gone and it has been such a lifesaver. Yes, she is old enough to walk on her own but the stroller makes getting through the park quickly so much easier.
Wear snow pants--well, at least your kids should, especially if it is cold and wet. That way no only do they stay warm but their pants don’t get wet when they sit on the ride.
Visit Sweet Lights–– Make sure to leave time to view the holiday lights at Sweet Lights but wait until the park is closed. Oftentimes, the park will close up to an hour earlier than Sweetlights so use that hour to view the lights while not sacrificing park time.
Bonus tip: Grab some Kettle Corn at the park before you leave and eat it as a snack while you view the lights.
Visit Santa and his reindeer–Did you know that Santa and his reindeer at in Hershey, resting up for the big day? My kids always get a kick out of seeing Rudolph!
Take in a holiday show-shows in the park are a great way to take a break and warm up. Make sure to check the show schedule online or when you enter the park so that you don’t miss out! Shows include a Music Box Christmas and the Christmas Candylane Storytime, where one of Santa’s elves will read a holiday story.
Finally, make sure to take time for family memories— For instance, for my family, if we stay at the Hershey Lodge we love to get hot chocolate and sit by the fire. If we stay at the Hotel then we love to have cookies and chocolate milk waiting for us when we get back to the room from the park. It’s the little touches like this that help make our Christmas in Hershey traditions so special for our family.