The Montreal metro area is packed with fun things to do this holiday season — from the Atwater Christmas Market to the holiday market trail outside the city. But venture out a little further and you'll discover even more, lesser-known holiday celebrations. Indeed, Upstate New York, which has a population almost equal to that of the province of Quebec, is an often untapped wealth of holiday cheer for Montrealers, who can sometimes become myopic in their worldview despite the plethora of things to do right across the border. One of the most exciting (and accessible!) Christmas celebrations this year is the Capital Holiday Lights Celebration in Albany, New York.

Set to open on November 29, it will feature an "all-new, drive-through spectacular with more than 125 displays and scenes in Albany’s Washington Park."

The trail of lights includes towering structures that "[depict] holiday scenes of yesteryear and many new and exciting lighting displays," according to the event website.

The best part: the park is within driving distance of Montreal and would make for a memorable winter road trip with some of your favourite people.

The route through tunnels of light and past towering structures and cheerful messages leads visitors to the Washington Park Lake House "filled with crafts and refreshment" and the big Mr. C, himself.

Guest can even make a reservation for a trolley tour of the display for some added whimsy.

The park will also be host to a few special events this season. November 26 is the Pet Walk Night, when visitors can take their furry friends on a stroll around the central lake for a suggested donation of $5.00/person

For a "different perspective" of the lights, bundle up and take part in the Bike Night on December 1.

Admission for passenger vehicles with a maximum capacity of nine people is a reasonable $20. An organizer for the celebration tells MTL Blog that the route takes about 30 minutes to complete if you plan on driving slowly enough to see every display.

Get all the details below!

Capital Holiday Lights Celebration, Albany, New York

Price: $20

Address: Washington Park, Albany, New York

Dates: November 29, 2019 – January 3, 2020

Sunday – Thursday: 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Friday – Saturday: 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Check the website for a complete schedule!

Why You Need To Go: For a memorable (potentially romantic) drive through towering displays of light designed to stimulate your nostalgia.

 

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