5 awesome Christmas light displays in Los Angeles

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Wakefield Winter Wonderland

It might not snow in many places in California during winter, but the season is alive and kicking at Wakefield Winter Wonderland, a vibrant Christmas light display in Northern Los Angeles County. In the Wakefield Court area, neighbors dress up their houses in spectacular, sparkling lights that really make it feel like the holidays. It’s got to be one of the most spectacular light displays during the holidays in LA.

Wakefield Winter Wonderland came about after the devastating 1994 Northridge Earthquake in California. Long story short, after the earthquake, the neighborhood began helping each other out when there was a need. Before Christmas, neighbors worked to decorate homes together.

It’s probably because the decorations are so well done that Wakefield Court attracts large crowds during holiday evenings. When visiting, there’s the option to drive or walk around. I would recommend setting aside 30 minutes to an hour for walking around, as there are many houses to admire and photograph. Sometimes, there are even live performances! If you decide to drive around instead, be prepared to go an a very slow pace, as many also choose to drive, which clogs up the residential streets.

The display runs from Dec. 1 to Dec. 31.

21865 Copper Hill Dr
Santa Clarita, CA 91350

Yolanda Lights

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Yolanda Lights is a charming display in a residential block in Reseda, California. It features multiple arches of Christmas lights lined down the sidewalk that create a warmly-lit tunnel. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a leisurely walk and indulge in a quiet Christmas spirit: it’s not as popular as other light displays (like Candy Cane Lane in Woodland Hills is), so there’s a lot of opportunity to enjoy it without much distraction. Lights are on from dark till midnight and are on display until the weekend after Three Kings Day. There’s a photo guest book on site that’s fun to “sign” and you can share them on Facebook. The light project has been up and running since 2004 as a way of bringing the community together. Visitors are also allowed to bring FM radios, bikes, scooters, roller skates, wagons and strollers. Parking is available on residential streets and is relatively easy.

Yolanda Lights
7300 Yolanda Avenue
Reseda, CA

Balian House

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Balian House is a private residence owned by the famous ice cream ice cream manufacturer. During the holidays, the owners put up elaborate Christmas lights and decorations – such as a nativity scene, a dinosaur wearing a Santa hat, and Santa with his reindeer – throughout the 3.5-acre property. One source says the Balian family began the lighting display in 1955. The House is quite a captivating scene and is a great place to swing by during a holiday lights tour. Since it’s in a residential area, parking is free and pretty easy. Balian House is also just minutes away from Altadena’s Christmas Tree Lane, which is a worthwhile sight as well.

1960 Mendocino Lane
Altadena, CA 91001

Christmas Tree Lane, Altadena

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There’s no better place to take a holiday stroll than Christmas Tree Lane in Altadena, a 0.7-mile stretch of road that’s decorated with colorfully-lit deodar cedar trees all throughout. The lane offers an enchanting environment for a leisurely walk or drive with beautiful lights overhead. And because it goes on for nearly a mile, congestion isn’t always an issue: you can have a quiet stroll or drive without too many distractions.

Fun facts:
-Altadena’s Christmas Tree Lane is a California Landmark
-It’s also on the National Register of Historic Places

Santa Rosa Avenue between Woodbury Avenue and Altadena Drive

Christmas Tree Lane, San Marino

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If you’re looking for a flamboyant Christmas light display, Christmas Tree Lane in San Marino is not the ideal place to visit. But if you’re searching for something simple yet grand, this is a good area to check out. The whole block of St. Albans Road between Huntington Drive and Monterey Road is dominated on both sides by enormous pine trees decorated with multi-colored Christmas lights. Because it’s only one block, the only way to really appreciate this is by walking to indulge in it. Even though it might attract a moderately-sized crowd, parking in the residential area poses no problems at all. Don’t forget to bring your camera and dress up in warm clothes!

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Huntington Drive at St. Albans
San Marino, CA 91108

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