7 Can’t-Miss Metro Detroit Holiday Attractions

November 6, 2017  |   Story by Lori Bremerkamp  |   Photos by Detroit Tree Lighting Ceremony, Downtown Rochester

Schedules can get hectic around the holidays, but make you have the dates saved for these annual family-friendly events!

Detroit’s Holiday Attractions

1. Detroit Tree Lighting Ceremony

Nov. 17
The annual lighting of the city’s mega-sized Christmas tree marks the beginning of the holiday season in The D. The spirit of the season is never higher, don’t miss all the fun at the Detroit Tree Lighting Ceremony.  

2. Wild Lights at the Detroit Zoo

Nov. 18–19 and 24–26; Dec. 1–3, 8–10, 15–23 and 26–31, 2017

Experience the magic of the Detroit Zoo in winter as you take in the holiday lights, the sights and enjoy entertainment and activities for all ages. More than 5 million LED lights illuminate trees, buildings and animal sculptures throughout the front of the zoo.

3. Holiday Walk Tours at Meadow Brook Hall

Nov. 24 to Dec. 23, 2017

Stroll through the elegant décor and sparkling lights of the Great Estate and experience the holiday magic of Meadow Brook. New this year, Landmark in Lights (Dec. 11 and Dec. 18–23) illuminates the path to the Land of Santa and Sweets, where you can warm up by the fire with a cup of hot cocoa. Special guided candlelight tours are also offered Nov. 26, Dec. 3 and Dec. 17.

Be sure to bring the kids! Santa will be at his workshop Dec. 21–23 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Photos are welcome, and visits are included with ticket admission.

4. Holiday Nights in Greenfield Village

Dec. 1–3, 8–10, 15–17, 19–23, 26–27 and 29–30, 2017

Surround yourself with true holiday spirit in what Reader’s Digest and USA Today call “one of the Top 10 Christmas experiences” in the country. Every lantern-lit path takes you to a new winter wonder to discover. Strap on a pair of ice skates, send a shout-out to Santa and his magnificent reindeer, and nestle into a horse-drawn wagon for a sing-along through Greenfield Village.

Enhance your experience by booking a special dinner package at Eagle Tavern or a Supper with Santa at A Taste of History Restaurant.

5. Winter Wonderland at Edsel & Eleanor Ford House

Various dates throughout December

Holiday events at the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House make for great memories. Soak in the beauty and history on a strolling holiday tour of the house. Outside, warm up around a toasty fire with cocoa and s’mores and see the estate aglow with holiday cheer.

Santa will make his annual appearances in Josephine’s Playhouse to hear children’s wish lists.

6. Midtown Detroit Noel Night

Dec. 2, 2017

More than 100 participating institutions — including the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Michigan Science Center and the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History — open their doors to the public free of charge during this cultural center-wide event. Noel Night activities include horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday shopping, family craft activities and performances by area music, theater and dance groups.

As always, the evening’s festivities will culminate with a Salvation Army Band-led sing-along, which has been moved to the Wayne State University campus (southwest corner of Woodward and Warren Avenues) this year.

7. Big Bright Light Show

Nov. 20 to Jan. 1, 2017

Jan. 19–21

Brighten your holidays with the Big, Bright Light Show. Grab dinner and do some holiday shopping while enjoying the more than 1 million lights covering the buildings of downtown Rochester. They’re lit each evening from 5 p.m. to midnight. If you can’t make it during the holidays, catch an encore showing during the city’s Fire & Ice Festival Jan. 19–21.

 

See more Detroit attractions.

Mentioned Attractions And Venues
  1. Campus Martius Park
    800 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48226313-962-0101 Highlight on map | More Details
  2. Detroit Zoo
    8450 W. 10 Mile Road, Royal Oak, MI 48067248-541-5717 Highlight on map | More Details
  3. The Henry Ford
    20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn, MI 48124313-982-6001 Highlight on map | More Details
  4. Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
    1100 Lake Shore Road, Grosse Pointe Shores, MI 48236313-884-4222 Highlight on map | More Details
  5. Midtown Detroit
    3939 Woodward Ave., Ste. 100, Detroit, MI 48202313-420-6000 Highlight on map | More Details
  6. Detroit Institute of Arts
    5200 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48202313-833-7900 Highlight on map | More Details
  7. Michigan Science Center
    5020 John R St., Detroit, MI 48202313-577-8400 Highlight on map | More Details
  8. Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
    315 E. Warren Ave., Detroit, MI 48202313-494-5800 Highlight on map | More Details
  9. Downtown Rochester
    308 Main St., Rochester, MI 48307248-656-0060 Highlight on map | More Details
  10. Rochester Downtown Development Authority
    308 S. Main St., Rochester, MI 48307248-656-0060 Highlight on map | More Details
  11. Meadow Brook
    350 Estate Drive, Rochester, MI 48309248-364-6200 Highlight on map | More Details