With the temperature dropping and the trees becoming bare, one thing is clear – the holiday season is officially upon us! 

There are many ways to celebrate and enjoy the holidays in Boston this year. From holiday specials, tree lighting ceremonies, performing arts, holiday markets, igloo dining, outdoor recreation and so much more (Trust us, the list goes on and on!) – there is something for everyone in the Hub. Read on for our list of the top things to do in Boston this holiday season:

 

 

Holiday Highlights

 

Live Events & Performing Arts: 

There is no shortage of on-stage theatrics during the holiday season here in Boston. Gather friends and family together and get tickets to the Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker opening for the season at the Citizens Bank Opera House on November 25 or Anthony William’s Urban Nutcracker opening on December 17, a Boston-centric spin on a holiday classic.  

Want to truly immerse yourself in the holiday season? Check out The Immersive Nutcracker: A Winter Miracle opening November 19, or get tickets for Cirque Du Soleil’s ‘Twas the Night Before at The Boch Center. Coming to the New England region for the first time ever, this exhilarating spin on the beloved Christmas tale brings thrilling acrobatics, loveable characters, and Christmas cheer to the entire family. And opening December 2, Black Nativity retells the Nativity story set to gospel music and dramatic dance. Originally written by Langston Hughes, Black Nativity has been performed annually in Boston since 1970. 

Looking for a fun and elegant date night? Tradition returns to Symphony Hall this season, with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops for a night of holiday favorites, jubilant Pops sing-along and a visit from Santa Claus himself at the 2022 Holiday Pops.  

Off the holiday traditions, but still, a must-see during the season, the ‘SIX’ wives of Henry VIII take the stage at the Emerson Colonial Theater from November 9 through the end of the year. From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, this original musical has turned into a global celebration of 21st-century girl power - adding to the amazing lineup of shows brought to the city by Broadway in Boston.  

Sure to bring laugh-out-loud moments to all – The Play That Goes Wrong is a must-see at the Lyric Stage Company of Boston. Running from November 11 – December 18, the term ‘Break a Leg!’ takes on a whole new meaning for this talented group of performers.  

With Boston’s ever-growing music scene, there will be no shortage of concerts during the season. Treat your loved ones or yourself to a ticket to Andrea BocelliStreetlight ManifestoLake Street DiveMix 104.1’s Deck The Hall BallKiss 108 Jingle Ball and so much more. 

The Nutcracker

Dare to dream big with New England’s favorite holiday tradition. Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker...

Urban Nutcracker

Anthony Williams’ Urban Nutcracker, the modern Boston-centric holiday classic will return to the...

The Immersive Nutcracker: A Winter Miracle

The Immersive Nutcracker: A Winter Miracle is the ultimate holiday experience for the entire family!...

Cirque du Soleil: 'Twas the Night Before...

‘Twas the Night Before...is an exhilarating spin on the beloved Christmas tale, and marks Cirque du...

Black Nativity

Black Nativity retells the Nativity story set to jubilant gospel music, dramatic dance, black...

2022 Holiday Pops

Photo courtesy of Photographer: Michael Blanchard for Boston Symphony Orchestra Tradition returns to...

SIX

From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, the SIX wives of Henry VIII take the mic to remix five hundred...

THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG

“Break a leg!” takes on a whole new meaning for a woefully misguided troupe of players at the...

Unique Holiday Events: 

There is no better way to kick off the holiday season than with a tree-lighting ceremony. Check out our full schedule of upcoming tree-lighting ceremonies happening all over the city. Not able to make it for the ceremonies? Then make sure to follow the Boston Holiday Lights Trail throughout the entire season. We personally recommend a stroll down Commonwealth Avenue Mall to see all the lights.  

Celebrate the festival of lights with a special Latke and Brisket filled Hanukkah Dinner at the Inn at Hastings Park, or come together for an evening of art, music and activities at the Museum of Fine Arts' special Hanukkah event. Bring the whole family to the Lunch with Santa Cruise, or join him for tea and gingerbread cookie decorating at the Inn at Hastings Park.  

Add more sparkle to your holidays with just a short drive to visit the Newport Mansions. For the first time ever, visitors to Sparking Lights at The Breakers can explore the property, enjoying a half-mile-long path filled with holiday lights and festive music. Or stroll locally with a Historic Holiday Stroll offered by the Freedom Trail Foundation. With the festive cheer that fills the city and the unique backdrop of Boston’s historic sites, this 90-minute tour is the perfect way to celebrate the holidays.   

Don’t forget to kick off the new year with First Night Boston, Boston's New Year's Eve celebration filled with performances, light shows, and fireworks displays. 

Hanukkah at the MFA

On Thursday, December 15, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), invites visitors to enjoy an...

Christmas Tea with Santa

Kick off the holidays with the Inn’s popular and beloved Holiday High Tea. Gather loved ones and...

Historic Holiday Stroll

The Freedom Trail® Foundation invites revelers to celebrate this holiday season on our annual...

First Night Boston 2023

Since 1975, Boston’s First Night has been a New Year’s Eve celebration of artistic performances, the...

Shop Local, Shop Small:  

Boston is filled with stores, shops and markets to cross everyone off your list this season. Visit Boston’s iconic holiday markets such as The Holiday Market at Snowport running from November 11 through December 3, or visit Boston’s South End neighborhood and shop local vendors at the SOWA Winter Festival opening November 25. Make sure to make your way over to Bow Market in Somerville, for unique shopping options, delicious culinary delights, and a craft beer or espresso from Remnant Brewing. Don't forget to also visit the Boston Women’s Market at Night Shift Brewing and Charles River Speedway on December 4, 11 and 18.  

Make shopping a truly unique Boston experience by strolling down Charles Street in Beacon Hill, iconic Newbury Street or the stores in Harvard Square with a festive latte in hand. Looking for the perfect unique gift or experience? We always recommend browsing the shelves of Boston’s Unique Bookstores or visiting the Boston Visitor’s Center where you can purchase holiday tours, tickets, and other unique Boston experiences. 

And we always recommend checking out the stores at Assembly Row, the Prudential CenterWrentham Village Premium OutletsThe Street at Chestnut HillDedham Legacy Place and MarketStreet Lynnfield.  

The Holiday Market at Snowport

They may be small, but local businesses bring our community to life in a big way. In its second...

SoWa Winter Festival 2022

The SoWa Winter Festival has assembled over 110 of the region’s best makers, artists, designers, and...

Drinks & Dining: 

Home can get hectic this time of year, and that definitely goes for your kitchen as well. Dine out this holiday season with Thanksgiving Day Dining specials or Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Dining options.  

Experience unique and festive dining experiences with various winter and igloo dining options in Boston and pop-up holiday bars at places such as  Miracle® Pop-Up Bar at The Kimpton Marlowe and Sippin’ Santa starting on November 22.  

There's nothing like gathering for a weekend brunch before a day of shopping. We recommend grabbing a table and oysters at Black Lamb, a Bloody Mary at Bostonia Public House, a pizza at Sonsie or a Croque Monsieur at Rochambeau. Experience a three-course brunch menu surrounded by iconic décor at GRANA or a jazz brunch at The Beehive.  

Looking for a way to see your friends and celebrate holiday festivities? Grab dinner at some of our cozy and delicious restaurants this season. For festive group dining, we recommend Grill 23 and BarHenrietta’s TableMIDA NewtonAlcoveQ RestaurantMooo…., Zuma or Punch Bowl. For something more intimate make sure to check out 1928 Beacon HillBar EnzaThe Butcher ShopLa VoileScampo or UNI.  

And you can never go wrong with a pasta and wine-filled dinner in the North End that starts or ends with an espresso martini from Bricco or Caffe Paradiso

Or put a twist on a classic night out with friends and book your spot at one of Boston’s experience bars, such as Flight ClubSPIN and the Seaport’s newly opened Puttshack.  

Black Lamb

A love letter to Boston's South End, Black Lamb is here to become a neighborhood favorite. We serve...

Bostonia Public House

A polished and playful restaurant within a vibrant bar atmosphere, delivering the right balance of...

Sonsie Restaurant

Located in Boston’s historic Back Bay, Sonsie is the oldest restaurant on Newbury Street. It’s the...

Rochambeau

Rochambeau is a two-floor, all-day restaurant, café-bakery and bar serving contemporary French fare...

Grana - The Langham, Boston

Set in the former Federal Reserve Bank's grand hall, glamour meets worn-in authenticity at the new...

Grill 23 & Bar

Awards and accolades abound at this Boston landmark. Awarded Best Steakhouse, Best Seafood...

Henrietta's Table - Charles Hotel

Fresh and honest. Chef Peter Davis has created a cozy, comfortable restaurant at...

Mida Newton

Italian inspired neighborhood restaurant by Chef Douglas Williams.

Alcove Boston

New England coastal cuisine on the waterfront with award-winning food and drink, friendly...

Mooo.... Restaurant

From chef/owner Jamie Mammano, Mooo...is an upscale steakhouse serving classic fare in a modern yet...

Zuma Japanese - Four Seasons One Dalton Street

Zuma, located at Four Seasons Hotel One Dalton Street, Boston is the 12th and latest addition to the...

Punch Bowl

Punch Bowl offers contemporary New England cuisine and has a slew of signature cocktails influenced...

1928 Beacon Hill

Please join us for an eclectic dining experience in our cozy antiquarian escape for classic...

Bar Enza

Bar Enza is a lively restaurant in the heart of Cambridge, MA. We use the best ingredients and...

The Butcher Shop

A tribute to the old world European boucheries, The Butcher Shop is both a neighborhood restaurant...

La Voile

La Voile, "the sail" in French, is a small authentic French brasserie with a nautical theme. It was...

Scampo

Scampo, the stunning first floor restaurant in Boston’s Liberty Hotel, is a culinary destination...

BRICCO

BRICCO's "boutique" Italian cuisine is unique, personal, and created for a select and sophisticated...

Flight Club Seaport

Located in the heart of Boston’s vibrant Seaport neighborhood, Flight Club Boston is a social...

SPIN

At SPIN we come together to socialize and celebrate play through ping pong — a game that transcends...

Puttshack, Boston Seaport

Puttshack is a leading concept in the emerging and growing market of competitive socializing....

Sports, Entertainment & Winter Activities:  

Experience the start of winter staples by visiting some of the city’s ice skating rinks. Take a date to the Frog Pond in the Boston Common or check out the special events happening at The Rink at 401 Park in Fenway. Back by popular demand is Curling at Boston’s Snowport – a transformation of Boston’s Seaport neighborhood into a winter wonderland.  

And as the streets outside get colder, The Boston Celtics and The Boston Bruins will be heating up both the ice and court at the TD Garden. This year’s 2023 NHL Winter Classic® will also feature the Boston Bruins at iconic Fenway Park, marking the fifth NHL regular-season outdoor game for the team and the second time the game has been at the home of the Boston Red Sox.  

That’s not all that’s exciting and happening at this historic stadium. Coming to Boston on December 17 is the Wasabi Fenway Bowl. Featuring teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and American Athletic Conference (AAC), the Wasabi Fenway Bowl brings the excitement of post-season college football to New England for the first time ever. 

Looking for something for both you and the kids? Coming to the TD Garden on December 28 are the World-Famous Harlem Globetrotters. Not your traditional basketball game – this event includes streetball moves and awe-inspiring dunk skills, in an amazing exhibition of talent, game and fun for the whole family.  

Boston is known to be nothing short of a "City of Champions". In celebration, The Sports Museum is proud to announce the 21 annual fundraising gala, The Tradition.  Honoring Boston greats like Johnny Damon, Bill Rodgers and Jillian Dempsey, this fundraiser event is not one to be missed.  

So, whether you are visiting Boston for the first time this season, visiting family for the 100th time or finding some cheer in your local neighborhood, there is something for everyone to do, experience and see this holiday season in Boston.  

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