5 low-stress ways to see St. Augustine’s Nights of Lights!

Posted by: Cathy Eng in Local Activities, Local Events, News

Each year, historic St. Augustine is awash with a sea of twinkling lights, millions of them from the streets to the rooftops. National Geographic has even listed it among the top ten holiday light displays in the world.

The 26thAnnual Nights of Lights begins this Saturday, November 23, and continues nightly through February 2, 2020. The first night, aptly named Light-Up Night, is sure to attract a huge crowd with live holiday music in the Plaza de la Constitución and an elaborate lighting ceremony at 6:30 p.m.

Since its such a big deal, it’s a huge draw for tourists and locals alike. So, we’ve pinpointed some of the best ways to see the Nights of Lights without all the stress of weaving through crowds.

1.) Head across the water –The Bridge of Lions (by itself one of the historic district’s most beautiful sights) is a great place to get a panoramic view of the lights. Park on the other side of the bridge (near Edgewater Inn or Marker 8 Hotel) and enjoy the great photo opportunities as you take a relaxing stroll over the bridge into the historic district.

2.) Hop aboard a trolley –If you have young kids or older family members who may find the excessive walking a challenge, opt for a trolley ride. Skip the line by reserving online, which is easy at most trolley companies like Old Town Trolleyor Ripley’s Big Red Christmas Train Nights of Lights Tour.

3.) Enjoy the view from Matanzas Bay –If you think boat tours on the Matanzas are only for tourists, you are missing out! There are several boat touring companies offering a breathtaking view of St. Augustine’s lights without the crowds and traffic. Check out Florida Water Toursor Red Boat Water Tours, which are booking for Nights of Lights now.

4.) Take a private tour –A great way to avoid the rush is by taking a private guided tour through the district’s lighted streets. There are a few ways to enjoy this more relaxing option: a 3-hour wine and carriage tour via The Tasting Tours, personalized golf cart tour via St. Augustine City Tours, or even a romantic horse-drawn carriage tour via Southern Carriages. If you really want your experience to take off (pun intended), Old City Helicopterseven provides a special Nights of Lights experience!

5.) Finally, skip Light-Up Night & wait a week or two.There is always a big hubbub about this first night, but in reality, you will see the exact same breathtaking light display on every other night until February 2. Local tip: visit on a quiet weeknight to avoid the biggest crowds!

Learn about all the events coming up in conjunction with Nights of Lights (Nights of Pints, anyone?) as well as parking details by visiting the city’s information page here!



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