St Augustine Festival of Lights – A Guide for Your Holiday Tour

One of the spectacular events in Florida, USA, is the St  Augustine Festival of Lights. These valued holiday lights performances and displays run from the 14th day of November until the 31st day of January in the historical place of St. Augustine.

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St. Augustine Nights of Lights
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During the lights display for this festival, the majority of the businesses downtown are open so that you can avail of their products and services. Their shops are available for viewing of the lights display and decorated buildings.

There is a wide array of selections for specialty tours, which you can choose for a great experience. You can choose to take a walk, or use an electric cart tour.

Trolleys and trains are also available for special seasonal tours so that you can go to the stunning areas in St. Augustine. You can do a lot of things once you visit this place for the festival. There are some photo opportunities which you can do or avail in the downtown areas.

You can even take selfies with the dazzling lights at the bayfront as your background. You may also use the Christmas tree with holiday gifts that surround it as a background for your photoshoot. If you want to consider this for your photoshoots, then you can this place at the center of the Plaza de la Constitucion.

The Nights of Lights in St. Augustine usually starts with a lights display. There’s a night ceremony on the 1st Saturday of the holiday season. However, there will be no ceremony this year to ensure safety precautions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

St. Augustine Nights of Lights is a winter holiday celebration where every historic business downtown and the people themselves participate by decorating with dazzling lights their buildings. This stunning light display continues to glare, which becomes more prominent every year as a holiday season destination for tourists and visitors from any part of the world.

How to Get there?

If you wish to St. Augustine for the Festival of Lights, you can also use private so that you can go to the best places nearby. For those who commute by going to St. Augustine, there are also some free shuttles or rides for transportation.

There’s a free transportation for you to go and visit the center of downtown. These free ride shuttles are always available from 8:00 am to 11:00 pm every Saturday of the holiday season. However, you may still check online if ever there are some changes to the schedules for their free rides.

What to Expect?

Here are some of the things and events which you can expect from this festival:

Light-up Night – The commencement of the Festival of the Lights always begins with this ceremony. There are different kinds of festivities, like musical performances, where the lighting display will also occur.

Colonial Night Watch Weekend – This celebration and parade encourage you to be there at the Castillo De San Marcos for the honor of the British influence on St. Augustine from 1763-1784.

Augustine Christmas Parade – This parade is composed of different types of cars, horses, marching bands, floats. Santa Claus also travels downtown for the Mission Nombre De Dios.

Annual Villa Candlelight Tours – You can have a tour with the stunning Villa Zorayda, which showcases attractive decorations and displays for the holiday season.

Holiday Regatta of Lights – Victory III encourages visitors and guests to brighten up waters as part of the holiday season parade.

Castillo Holiday Open House – This place provides an opportunity to have an interaction with more than 300 years of history, complete with cannon firings and reenactors.

Annual B&B Holiday Tour – This tour during the weekend lets you see over 20 inns and 11 properties of cultural heritage decorated with Christmas season themes.

St. Augustine Ballet’s Nutcracker – This is a classical production by some professional dancers and students in the city. You and your family can opt to watch their performances as well.

Actual Cost to Visit

Visiting St. Augustine for the Nights of Festival is not that costly. What you need to prepare is extra money for your food allowance and the payment for the hotel accommodation, especially if you want to stay in this place for how many days. Of course, it is good to stay here for some days so that you can experience the enjoyment as you witness every event for the festival.

If you have a car during your visit to St. Augustine, then you only need to pay $15 for the entrance fee. Cash, debit, or credit cards are all accepted as a mode of payment.

The place is a perfect vacation for you and for your loved ones. Since it is a local winter holiday season, you should expect that the weather is quite colder than the previous months. With this type of weather condition, it is advisable to suit yourself with thick clothes.

You also need to bring jackets, scarves, and other types of clothing to make you warm and comfortable during your visit here.

Top-Rated Hotel Near The Nights of Lights

It is also good to choose the best hotels for your accommodations during your visit to St. Augustine. You may consider the following hotels for accommodations:

1. George Inn – This hotel is one of the luxurious hotels in Florida. It gives you the opportunity to stay in the center of the historic city and just adjacent to the beautiful places for the festival of lights.

 

2. World Golf Village Renaissance St. Augustine Resort – This is a perfect for you since it has complete amenities and facilities. It also includes 2 golf courses on the site, free Wi-Fi, tea/coffee making facilities, and many more.

 

3. Red Roof Inn Plus+ – This is one of the best and affordable hotel accommodations that you can choose for your family. This is just adjacent to the historic places of the city. In fact, it’s only a 3-minute drive from St. Augustine’s outlets.

 

Best Restaurants

Choosing an ideal hotel is not the only thing that you need to consider when visiting St. Augustine. It is also essential if you will explore the best places or restaurants where you can eat delicious foods. Some of your options are the following:

  • Carmelo’s Marketplace – This is one of the best restaurants in St. Augustine. It offers a wide variety of pizzas, Italian cuisines, and foods for vegetarian. You may consider this place if you are looking for unusual foods to satisfy your appetite.

 

  • Casa Benedetto’s Ristorante – It is one of the top-rated restaurants in St. Augustine that offers a wide array of food selections. It provides local cuisines, Southern- Italian, Sicilian and Italian foods. They also have some foods for those vegetarians.

 

  • Uptown Scratch Kitchen – This is also a perfect choice for you if you want to eat something delicious that is budget-friendly. They offer Italian, American, and South American Cuisines. They also have foods for special diets, which include gluten-free options and vegan options.

If you want to be relaxed and enjoy a holiday season, then you may opt to visit the St. Augustine Festival of Lights and experience the spectacular events in the city. A holiday tour with your family in the city could be considered as one of the best moments in your life.

Arik Akunis
Arik Akunis

My name is Arik Akunis and I have been in the field of lighting for over the last 20 years, I started my journey in the world of lighting in the lighting niche for events where I first came across a festival of lights and immediately fell in love with it.