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Christmas Lights Spectacular - Hunter Valley Gardens

Home > Sydney > Christmas | Family | Gardens | Outdoor
by Lisa W (subscribe)
I am a passionate traveller, foodie and explorer mum and love discovering new hot-spots, family-friendly cafes and hidden gems.
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Don't miss the most dazzling Christmas lights display
We know it's almost Christmas when the Hunter Valley Gardens switches on its magnificent Christmas Lights Spectacular display and let me tell you, this year is more dazzling than ever before.

So why should you go see the lights?

We recently took a family road trip to the Hunter Valley to see the lights and the kids have not stopped talking about it ever since.

Here are my top reasons why you should not miss this spectacular lights event.

1) It's the biggest and best

Well, firstly The Christmas Lights Spectacular is most likely going to be the most impressive lights showcase you will see around these parts.

With over 2-million lights twinkling away in the night sky, the kids and grown-ups will be enthralled.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Cinderalla's Castle


There are a number of different themed areas within the gardens. A giant gingerbread man welcomed us into candy land, which was filled with delicious looking lollipops and candy canes.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Delicious Candyland


The kids loved fairyland, where they discovered Tinkerbell and her friends, a field of My Little Ponies and the magnificent Cinderella's castle complete with glass slipper and fantasy carriage.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Tinkerbell and Her Fairies


The lake was home to gorgeous lit-up mermaids, fish and other sea creatures as well the impressive illuminated waterfall - wow!

There's also an 'Around the World' display, which showcases glittering versions of the Eiffel Tower, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Statue of Liberty and more. And see if you can spot the tire-blue Aussie Santa with his kangaroos pulling his sleigh.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Aussie Santa and His Kangaroos


There are some magical Instagrammable shots like the giant heart, the rainbow and the massive lit-up Christmas tree ornament near the end of the walk.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Hunter Valley Gardens, you have our heart


2) The StoryBook Garden

The Storybook Garden is a reason all on its very own to visit the light display. This fantastical garden is an escape into a children's fairytale. Meet the characters of popular nursery rhymes such as Humpty Dumpty and see Alice in Wonderland and the Gingerbread House lit up in multi-colour splendour.

It's definitely worthwhile coming back to visit this garden during the day but at night, it really is something special.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Humpty Dumpty in the Storybook Garden


3) It's family friendly

Christmas Lights Spectacular is a perfect outing for the whole family. There is a clearly demarcated light path which is stroller friendly and while there is plenty to see, the route is the perfect length for little legs. Although if you have young ones in tow, it may be a good idea to bring along the pram, especially if you're planning on staying late into the night.

The event also opens at 5:30pm, so you can get there early and enjoy the rides, have something to eat and watch the lights twinkle into life. The doors close at 10pm, so you have plenty of time to make the most of all that's on offer.

4) Entertainment

Besides the lights, there is so much to keep the kids entertained. During our visit, there was a roaming circus trickster who had a bunch of hula hoops and he encouraged the children and grown-ups to give them a whirl.

The fabulous Little Scallywagz perform each night (at 7:30pm and 8:30pm) and the kids loved bopping on the neon disco floor and singing along to the popular festive songs.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Little Skallywagz Show


You can also get a very special photo with Santa Claus himself. Plus in Santa's Factory, you can scribble letters to the team in the North Pole and say Hi to the reindeers and elves.

5) The rides and food

The Hunter Valley Gardens is home to four permanent rides as well as pop-up jumping castles for both the youngies and the older kids.

The Venetian Carousel is beautiful and if it was up to them, the kids would have spent half the night riding on the horses.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
The beautiful Carousel


The massive 25-metre high Ferris wheel looked magnificent all lit up and we loved getting the best view in town from the very top. If you can, grab a ride before sundown to admire the view during the day and then climb on board again when the lights are on.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Santa's aeroplane and the Ferris Wheel


My kids were too small to have a go on the Superslide and the Swing Chairs (you have to be taller than 110cm) but it looked like an absolute blast.

Tokens for individual rides cost $6 each or you can get an unlimited rides wristbands for $15 per person.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Thrilling Swing Chairs


There are lots of delicious food options available and tables and chairs to sit at. There is a stall called Stacks On Fries, with kid-friendly meals, another selling Stuffed Spuds, Wood-Fired Pizza, Gourmet Hot Dogs and Gelato and Donuts for dessert. YUM!

6) The gardens during the day

If your budget allows it, spend the little bit extra to get a Day/Night ticket. This means that you can enjoy the lights spectacular but also get to experience the full gardens during the day.

Zones such as the Oriental Garden and Lakes Walk are closed off at night and you can only really appreciate the sweet-smelling roses in bloom during the day. Plus you can get to have make-believe tea with the Mad Hatter in the Storybook Garden.

We also took the Hunter Valley Gardens Train which meanders through the garden and you get a fascinating insight into the gardens from the train driver.

hunter valley gardens, christmas lights spectacular
Hunter Valley Gardens Train


Lunch at the tranquil Garden Terrace cafe was a delicious delight and also excellent value for money.

The Christmas Lights Spectacular is on display until 26 January 2019, so you've got plenty of time to organise your visit. Go for the day and stay longer but make sure you add this to the top of your list to do this festive season.
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Why? The Most Spectacular Lights Display And Fun For The Whole Family
When: 2 November 2018 until 26 January 2019
Phone: 02 4998 4000
Where: Hunter Valley Gardens
Cost: Adults - $30, Child - $25, Family Pass - $99 Kids under 4 years are FREE.
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