9 must-visit spots for holiday lights in the Philadelphia area

One of the best ways to get into the holiday spirit is to bundle up in your warmest scarf, fill a travel mug with hot cocoa, and check out the best Christmas light displays in the city and the area. Here’s a list of places that are worth walking (or driving) to through this month:

The Miracle on South 13th Street

Camera icon Margo Reed
Magdalena Vazquez walks through the “Miracle on South 13th Street” with her children Alan, Ashley, Carolina, and Alexis Ruiz.

The 1600 block of South 13th Street is known for having one of the best light displays in the country. This year, the display is sponsored by Kindy’s Christmas Factory Outlet, which means you’ll see thousands of lights as well as classic light-up Christmas decorations. Because of how narrow the street is, opt to walk through this display rather than drive. If you go on a weekend, you might see Santa himself.

Between Clarion and Iseminger Streets and Tasker and Morris Streets. Lights on nightly from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. until Jan. 1.

Peddler’s Village

The Bucks County shopping destination is decked out every holiday season with a million twinkling lights, transforming into a magical winter wonderland. Don’t forget to stop by the gingerbread houses from the village’s annual competition, which are on display until Jan. 6.

2400 Street Rd. New Hope. Lights on nightly until Jan. 6. peddlersvillage.com

West Chester Griswolds

The Griswold family built their first holiday light display in 1999, which used about 2,000 lights. This year, their display features more than 85,000 lights, all controlled by a computer. LED lights make up 99 percent of the display. Visitors can also tune into 87.9 FM for Christmas tunes and information about the lights.

304 Dutton Mill Rd., West Chester. Lights on from 4:45 to 9:45 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, and until 10:45 p.m. Fridays through Sundays until Jan. 1. westchestergriswolds.com

Collingswood

This New Jersey town strings up 250,000 lights every December, turning the streets into a charming sight. Visitors can even wear free HoloSpex 3D glasses, which have holographic lenses that bend light into fascinating patterns.

Haddon Avenue, Collingswood. collingswood.com

Smedley Street Christmas Spectacular

Camera icon Steven M. Falk
Khloe Jarrett and dad Shawn check out the lights on Smedley Street in South Philadelphia.

The 2700 block of Smedley Street in South Philadelphia is another must-visit for holiday lights, with its blow-up Santa, twinkling reindeer, and even a mailbox for Christmas wish lists.

Between 16th and 17th Streets and Moyamensing and Oregon Avenues

Smith’s Christmas lights

This display in Wilmington is so bright that you can spot it from a plane. It features more than 700,000 lights and decorations, spans two acres, takes two months to build, and costs more than $4,000 in electricity.

Silverside and Prior Roads, Wilmington

Light Up a Life

Jack Yoast has been putting together one of the most stunning light displays in the area for a decade, and this year is no different. Visitors can walk through the display, where they’ll spot Santas flying helicopters and playing basketball. Don’t forget to donate a few bucks — Yoast gives proceeds to a local charity each year.

1320 East Butler Pike, Ambler. Lights on from 5:45 to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and 5:15 to 9 p.m. on Sundays. acteonlightupalife.com

Shady Brook Farm

Shady Brook Farm boasts a light show that has more than three million sparkling lights in whimsical displays. Visitors can opt to drive through in their cars or ride in an open-air wagon. Hot cocoa and s’mores kits are available for purchase at the Farm Market, and little ones can have their photos taken with Santa.

931 Stony Hill Rd. Yardley. Lights on from 5 to 10 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays, and until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. $30 per car; $12 per person for wagon ride. shadybrookfarm.com

Greeby Street

Camera icon Elizabeth Robertson
Santa (reflected in the window of a van) waves to folks in the 4200 block of Greeby Street.

On the 4200 block of Greeby Street in the Mayfair section of the city, Christmas is taken very seriously. Mark Stabler started the tradition years ago and decks out his neighbors’ homes top to bottom in lights (as long as they agree to it, of course), making the street a must-see for Christmas lovers. The block uses energy-efficient LED lights, which keeps costs down without sacrificing any of the shine.

Between Erdrick and Walker Streets. Lights on from 5 to 11 p.m. nightly.