The holiday season in Boise is so special. There are so many gorgeous sights to see, so many activities that are offered to the community, and opportunities to spend quality time with your family. The Boise area has snow, glistening lights, beautifully decorated trees, and you can even ice skate with Santa Claus! I mean if that does not put you into the holiday spirit then I do not know what will.

This city brings families together during the holiday season and it is truly magical. There is no place that I rather spend this time of year than right here in my hometown. A huge part of that is because Boise does the holidays right. There is an abundance of entertainment options offered that it is impossible not to feel merry and bright.

There are a few places that I always look forward to visiting each holiday season. Each one of these places puts me into the holiday spirit and gives me some cheer. I call it my Boise Holiday Bucket List. While not all of these places are located in Boise, they are all pretty close and worth the drive. Each place is sure to make your holiday season extra special.

Indian Creek Plaza

The Indian Creek Plaza is located in downtown Caldwell. Every year they put on one heck of a winter wonderland festival! They decorate the plaza with over a million twinkling lights which is a sight that needs to be seen! Indian Creek is truly a special place to experience. They offer live entertainment, music, and a kid playland- all which are free to enjoy. While you are there you might get lucky enough to run into a few of your favorite Frozen 2 characters or have a visit with Santa. Take the kids on a pony ride or perhaps a train ride around the plaza. Make sure to grab some last-minute Christmas gifts at the market as well. Finally, you do not want to miss out on the ice-skating at the plaza (costs $4-$10), some days you can even hit the ice with Santa! 

To see the plaza’s full schedule go to their website at

The Village

The Village at Meridian has so much to offer this holiday season. From story time with Santa’s helpers, to photos with Santa (for your kids or pets!), to a holiday light show. Whatever gets you in the holiday spirit this place has! They even offer ice skating until the end of January so be sure to stop in for some family fun on the ice. But my favorite thing that The Village offers is breakfast with Santa on Saturday mornings. How magical is that? Your kids can sit with Santa for a holiday breakfast, meet him in person, and write letters (costs $12 for adults and $9 for kids). I know that this will be a memory that your kid’s will cherish for years to come.

To see everything that The Village has to offer this holiday season go to their website at

Botanical Garden

This is one of my favorite places to visit during the holiday season. It runs until January 4th, so there is plenty of time to get there before the Winter Garden aGlow is over. The light display features over a half million lights and sprawls over an impressive 14 acres. If you have been before, you still need to go and check it out this year because they have added a new Illumination interactive display. It is the perfect way to spend the day with your family. Or if you are looking for some adult time, make sure to visit the gardens on the 18th when they will be hosting Wine Wednesday. The Botanical Gardens also offers live entertainment and visits with Santa throughout the whole holiday season. If you are searching for a magical experience, this is the place for you.

To plan your visit to the Botanical Gardens visit their website at

The Egyptian

The Egyptian Theater is one of Boise’s most treasured landmarks. The historical venue is beautiful and offers a warm and cozy environment for movie lovers. During the holiday season Boise Classic Movies hosts some of your favorite holiday films at The Egyptian Theater. They allow the public to vote on which classic Christmas movies they will be showing to ensure a great turnout. There is everything from Home Alone to Christmas Vacation to It’s A Wonderful Life. There is still time to grab your family and some popcorn and go enjoy your favorite holiday film in one of Boise’s most beautiful and unique venues.

To see the full movie schedule visit Boise Classic Movies at

American Heritage Trolley Tour

A trolley ride? To see Christmas lights? Yes please! If you are up for a little adventure, then I suggest you check out The American Heritage Trolley Holiday Tour. The trolley, or Molly Trolley as they call her, usually runs tours of historic downtown Boise, but during the holiday season they deck her out to go tour some of the best holiday light displays in town. These hour-long tours are now running nightly until through Christmas Eve. Do not forget to grab your coat, hat, and gloves as this is an open air tour and can get chilly.

To book your trolley tour visit American Heritage’s website at

The Giving Tree

This is one of my absolute favorite Boise holiday traditions! The Giving Tree is such a special event that Boise puts on every year to support the Women’s and Children’s Alliance. If you do not know what this is all about, I suggest that you go and check it out this year. At The Grove Plaza where the Christmas Tree Lighting is held each year is where The Giving Tree program kicks off. Branches of the tree are hung with gift tags and each one has items listed on the tag that are needed by the Women’s and Children’s Alliance. Community members are able to take a tag with them and purchase the needed item to donate. These gifts can be dropped off at any Zion Bank locations. This is such a great way to give back each year and know that you are helping members of our community.

To learn more about The Giving Tree program go to


If none of these events get you in the holiday spirit, then check out everything that Boise has to offer by visiting

What is your favorite thing to do in Boise during the holiday season?

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