Christmas Holiday Lights in Littleton, Englewood, Centennial, Highlands Ranch, and Lone Tree
Updated 12/2022: This little drive will take you past a few of south Denver's major light displays. You'll start at Southglenn Mall and then head far south towards Englewood and the Kloewer residence (5041 S. Elati). Afterward, move south and west through downtown Littleton on Littleton Boulevard, and end up at the Hudson Gardens lighting display.
Lights at the Southglenn Mall
6991 S Vine St, Centennial, CO 80122
This shopping area makes a good starting place since it’s easy to find (at the corner of University and Arapahoe) and has quite a few places to grab a bite or a drink before you set off. The center street of this outdoor mall (in front of the theater) has a nice, tasteful display of lighted trees, as well as a fireplace and a skating rink.
They also have a Santa inside that you can visit, and lots of other special events and services, such as Clydesdale carriage rides, carolers, and even Santa photos with your pet. Check their website for dates and times.
If you want to grab a bite or get a hot drink before you go out, there are several restaurants. You can also get sushi, pizza, soup, stir-fry, salad bars, and all kinds of drinks at Whole Foods Market.
Lights on House at 6636 S. Lafayette
As you head west on Arapahoe Road, the cool white lights that decorate the trees and the roofline will catch your eye off to the right. It's Stricker's Winter Wonderland! Make a right on Lafayette, and you will see a tree and yard decked out with all manner of things—including a whole section devoted to Dr. Seuss' Whoville.
Make sure you take a look at the windows to catch a glimpse of the Grinch lurking about. If you get out of the car and walk around to see the display, you can also hear the Christmas music that’s piped from the porch.
If you have time, wend your way through the neighborhood for a bit. While the other houses aren’t as elaborate, there are still some feats of engineering (how did they get those red lights so high on that tree?) to admire. This neighborhood seems to have more decorating spirit than most of the ones I’ve seen in Littleton.
Lights at 6496 S Marion Place, Centennial, 80121
If you keep heading north on Lafayette, you will come to Marion Place and another house bedecked with all manner of inflatables and lights. Here you will find a towering Santa, a whole congregation of snowmen, and even some snow dogs. Be sure to travel along the east side of the house to see Santa peeking out of a setting I've never seen before. It seems sometimes even Santa needs to "take care of business."
Synchronized Lights and Music on 7148 South Grant Street 80122
This display has 35,000 lights which are synchronized to music transmitted on the radio at 98.1 FM on your dial. Thanks to Caleb Schallenmuller who pointed out his display to me. It’s quite the sight.
The lights are bright, with bold colors, and the music is definitely on the energetic side of the spectrum. My little phone camera doesn’t do justice to the depth of the color, but you can see that he has quite a few features to work with for his synchronized lights: roof lines, stars, trees, and arches.
The photo doesn’t show it, but there is also a big triangular tree shape to the right with various strands that light up. He gets quite a bit of variety and quite a bit of the flashing “wow factor” from this display. I’ve included a brief video excerpt that will give you an idea of the mood of the display. Again, you really have to see it in person to get the full effect of the bright lights.
Lights at 7152 S Franklin St, Centennial, 80122
The modest-sized house is absolutely covered with lights, with a few trees and such for emphasis. If you like more traditional Christmas music, this is the place for you. They've chosen a nice selection of standards with instrumental and vocal selections (in contrast to the shows which are heavy on rock.) It's charming, and I especially like the addition of the brighter twinkle lights. It gives the whole thing quite a bit of character.
Lights at 1349 E. Green Willow Ln., 80121
If you drive through this part of town, you will see quite a few very tall decorated trees and nicely decorated houses. This is a relatively well-to-do area, and it looks like quite a few of the people here have the funds to have their places professionally decorated. One place I especially liked was 1349 E. Green Willow Ln., 80121. It’s a tastefully decorated house with enormous trees all it up.
Lights at 3 Random Rd. Englewood, CO 80113
This house is nicely decorated, though most of the decorations are behind iron gates, and a little harder to see than others.
Lights at 85 Meade Ln., Englewood, CO 80113
This house on Meade Lane wins the prize for unique and classy decoration of trees. The lights are arranged in a regular crisscross pattern that reminds me a little bit of plaid, with large lighted ornaments punctuating the design.
Lights at 4 Mockingbird Ln. Englewood, CO 80113
This elaborately- decorated house at 4 Mockingbird Ln. features nicely-wrapped green trees.
The Kloewer's, 5041 S. Elati, Englewood, CO 80110
This home, two blocks west of Broadway and one block north of Belleview, has a postage-stamp yard, but the Kloewers manage to pack just about every inch of it with lights, figurines, and all manner of Christmas décor.
You can see the lights from your car as you drive past, but you're going to want to get the kids and bundle out so that you can walk around and get the full effect. The brightly lit outline of a train, which adorns his driveway fence, is the highlight of this display.
Right across the street is another display that is not as elaborate, but still has quite a bit to see.
Lights on Littleton Boulevard
Once you have finished taking in the previous displays, go back to Belleview and turn south on Windermere. It will intersect with Littleton Boulevard, and you will head west/
As you travel west on Littleton Boulevard (which changes its name to Main Street), you will come to a bridge festooned with lights, the entrance into the glittering display of downtown Littleton. Craft shops and trendy restaurants line either side of the street, each with one or two deciduous trees out front. Many cities string lights on trees, but the city of Littleton seems to be in a contest to see how many thousands of lights they can put on each tree. They avoid being overwhelming by sticking to a simple color palette of warm white lights.
When you reach the end of the fourth block, the street curves to the left, and as you come out towards Santa Fe Dr., you'll see the grand finale: several large evergreen trees lit from top to bottom with brightly colored lights. The shops in this little area also make it a point to add to the display with lights outlining roof lines and gables.
Lights on Home on Caley Ave
As you travel past the lights on Littleton Boulevard, move over to the left lane so that you can turn left when you get to Santa Fe, to Church Ave. and then Prince Street. If you like the Peanuts (R) gang, turn left onto Caley Avenue. After two blocks, look off to your left to see the house at 2240 W. Caley Ave. There are several little scenes of Charlie Brown, Linus, Snoopy and the whole gang.
Often, these little dioramas go up late, even as late as the 20th of December, so check back later if you don't see them. Also, they don't seem to be set on a timer, which means that they go on and off whenever the homeowner gets to them. Still, it's worth taking a little two-block detour if the Peanuts characters warm your heart.
Lights on Windermere Street
As you travel down Caley, go about six blocks, then make a turn south on Windermere street. You'll see decorated houses all along the way.
Luminaria on Windermere Street
If you continue on Windermere, cross Ridge Road and keep going until Windermere ends in a cul-de-sac, you will see a neighborhood that sets out blocks and blocks of luminaria.
These decorations are simple in concept: a votive candle is placed in a a paper bag that has a layer of coarse sand in the bottom for stability. The effect is cheerful, soothing, and charming.
I talked with a woman who lived in the neighborhood, and she said that the luminaria are set out only on Christmas eve. It's a tradition that has endured for over 20 years.
Our family found it best to park the car and walk around the neighborhood. If you try to drive in your car, you'll find that the car's lights wash out the subtle light of the luminaria, ruining the effect.
Houses at 706–746 W. Easter Pl, Littleton, CO 80120
Just east of Elati Strett on W Easter Place, you can find several lighted houses in a row. I often wish that more blocks could be this way, an extended line of Christmas cheer. I've included several photos from the same street below.
Christmas Holiday Lights on Jackass Hill
That's right. It's called Jackass Hill Road, an apparent homage to the mules who were pastured there during WWI.
You can get here by navigating to the corner of Mineral Ave. and Prince Street and then turning north on Prince Street.
Despite the name, this street is home to a collection of suburban homes, many with a balcony that faces the road. The people who live in them have started and maintained a charming tradition: they decorate their balconies with words for the season. Look off to the left as you are coming down the hill, and you will see one house with a lighted "REJOICE," "JOY," another with "HOPE," and another with "JOY." See how many you can spot!
2492 W Peakview Ct Littleton, CO 80120
If you are travelling on Prince Street, turn west onto Peakview Court, and you will be in an area known as Prince Street Estates. Quite of few of the folks here have their homes festively decorated. My favorite is one on the west side of the development with the word "Joy." You can see a picture of it below.
Christmas Holiday Lights at Hudson Gardens Event Center, 6115 S Santa Fe Dr, Littleton, CO 80120
Hudson Gardens is a crown jewel for Littleton, a botanic garden with beautiful vistas and landscaping. Starting in October, they string lights on the trees, bushes and bridges and turn the place into a lights extravaganza. One thing I especially like about their display is that many of the trees are next to a pond which reflects the lights.
They change the colors and design every year, so you will see something different from the pictures I've included. The photos do give you an idea of how big the trees are and how many lights they put on them.
The tickets are a little less than other metro area attractions and you can take a picture with Santa for free. The venue sells hot beverages and has wagon rides available. If the lot is full, there is a large lot across Santa Fe where you can park for free. Just make sure you cross at the light, since Santa Fe is such a busy street.
Addresses of Homes Mentioned
Remember, you can select and copy these and then either email them to yourself or text them to yourself. When you pull them up on your phone, they should turn into links that you can tap to get directions.
- 6991 S. Vine St., Centennial, CO 80122
- 6636 S. Lafayette, Centennial Colorado 80121
- 6496 S. Marion Pl., Centennial 80121
- 7148 S. Grant St., Centennial, CO 80122
- 7152 S Franklin St, Centennial, 80122
- 1349 E. Green Willow Ln., 80121
- 3 Random Rd. Englewood, CO 80113
- 85 Meade Ln. , Englewood, CO 80113
- 4 Mockingbird Ln. Englewood, CO 80113
- 5041 S. Elati, Englewood, CO 80110
- 2069 W. Littleton Blvd., Littleton, CO 80120 (Courthouse)
- 2707 Main St., Littleton, CO 80120 (Melting Pot)
- 6490 S Windermere St, Littleton, CO 80120
- 709 W. Easter Pl. Littleton, CO 80120
- 2240 W. Caley Ave. Littleton, CO 80120
- 2492 W. Peakview Ct., Littleton, CO 80120
Best of South Metro Lights
Our family has lived in South Metro Denver for 20 years, and these sites are our picks for best lighting displays in the area. In about two hours and 10 miles, you can see them all.
Keep reading for more about light displays in the Denver area.
If You Want More: Highlands Ranch
Highlands Ranch is about 20 minutes from Littleton, but well worth the drive as you can see a cluster of fabulous houses. As with the previous drive, I've listed the addresses at the bottom of this section so that you can copy it and e-mail it or text it to yourself and use your phone to get directions.
“The Gingerbread House” 10221 S. Fairgate Way, Highlands Ranch
This house in Highlands Ranch is worth a drive all in itself. It has always been well-coordinated and tasteful, but now that they’ve switched to LED lights, it knocks your socks off. It bolong to the Hazard family, who has dubbed it “The Gingerbread House.” If you go on a weekend or other busy time, be prepared to wait about 10 minutes in line to get to the house.
A Cluster of Homes in Highlands Ranch
Fortunately, The Gingerbread House is close to a cluster of gaily-decorated houses as well as a beautiful "Let It Snow" banner strung across the street. I've included photos below, and then after that, you can see all the addresses of the houses I've mentioned in Highlands Ranch.
Addresses for Places in Highlands Ranch
- 10221 Fairgate Way, Highlands Ranch, CO 80126 (The Gingerbread House)
- 10275 Bentwood Court Highlands Ranch, CO 80126
- 2880 Canyon Crest Ln, Highlands Ranch, CO 80126
- 2800 Canyon Crest Lane, Highlands Ranch, CO 80126
- 881 Altair Dr, Lone Tree, CO 80124 (Nutcracker/Pirate Ship—see description below)
If You Want More: Lone Tree Pirate Ship Christmas, 881 Altair Dr, 80124
This fellow, Sean, constructs a pirate ship on his deck and has a synchronized light show for Halloween. Then, he switches it over and it becomes a Christmas light and music show. The show runs about 20 minutes and features standards like “Carol of the Bells,” and “We Three Kings,” but also some more unusual selections like “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas,” and “Disco Santa” which includes a mashup of the “Star Wars Theme” and “Uptown Funk.” It’s all great fun.
In addition to the pirate ship, he has a giant nutcracker, spectacular synchronized light trees, lights on his house, and projections on his garage. In the photo, you can see the hippopotamus projection that goes along with the song. On top of all that, Sean will let you come up and “fire” the cannons on the ship if he is home. You’ll see sound, light, and smoke. With the cannons and the Star Wars music, this is a great stop for the little ones who are fans of pirates and Star Wars.
Here is more information from his Word-Of-Mouth Littleton Facebook post: “Show runs from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. every night until the middle of January. If I am home I will open the pirate ship on Friday and Saturday nights so people can continue to fire all three cannons. We broadcast on 89.5 fm so you can stay warm.”
If You Want More: Grace Presbyterian Church, 9720 US-85, Littleton, CO
This church has put together a free 20-minute light show in the yard next to the church building. People pull in to their parking lot and park to watch the show, kind of like being at a drive-in movie. You tune your radio to hear the music.
They have a couple of tall triangles to serve as trees and three smaller trees with “mouths” that sing some of the songs. It’s not terribly big, but they use their lights to good effect. They have songs for kids and grown-ups, and when we were there on a weekend night, they even had a food truck where you could buy some goodies.
If You Want More: Camp Christmas 801 S Yarrow St, Lakewood, CO 80226
If you feel like you have been to so many holiday lights displays that everything is just “same-old same-old,” then Camp Christmas is just the ticket for you. Really wishing you could see a giant metal owl that’s on fire? They have that. Feeling like what you really need is a room entirely in pink with pink wallpaper, pink sofas, pink chandeliers, and a pink tree? They have that. Wondering why you haven’t seen a barn lit up in psychedelic colors and patterns that vibrate and twirl? Look no further. With almost every step, you’ll see some sort of holiday decor that you really haven’t seen it done quite that way before.
Camp Christmas comes by that name honestly. The theme is definitely “Camp” with a capitol C, and if you like your decor creative, unusual, and over-the-top, it’s great fun. Among all the colorful lights and great photo ops, you will also see humor, nostalgia, and history that will engage your brain a little as well as your eyes.
One of our family’s favorite things were the different trees which are decorated in such a way that they contain some sort of pun. I don’t want to give away into the answers, but this is one that I didn’t see you but would still illustrate the concept. If you were to see a tree decorated with pictures of Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost, you might figure out that it was a “poet-tree.” Poetry. Get it?
This display is set up at Heritage Lakewood Belmar Park (801 S Yarrow St, Lakewood, CO 80226), and it looks like an excellent venue for the pieces. It’s a historical farm with several different small buildings, and each one is decorated with a different theme. As I understand it, many different artists have contributed to each of the set pieces, and you can spend quite a bit of time looking at all the attention to detail. It may change from year to year, so some of the things I mention for this year may morph in subsequent years.
There’s also some pretty yummy food that’s a little bit unusual. When we were there, we were able to get hot buttered rum or mulled wine and the food truck had a Mexican theme offering bratwurst and tater tots with toppings like salsa, avocado, roasted corn and the like.
If You Want More: 5376 S. Xenon St., Littleton, CO 80127
This home is quite a ways west, but is worth a drive out because of its tunnel of lights & the owners even feature Santa on select nights. Other homes in the area are also gaily decorated.
If You Want More: Chatfield Farms, Denver Botanic Gardens
- 8500 W Deer Creek Canyon Rd, Littleton, CO 80128
- Website: Trail of Lights, Denver Botanic Gardens
- Kid-friendly: Medium
- Size: Large
- Recommended Amount of Time: 1.5–2 hours
- Price: Moderate
- Parking: Good
- Snacks: Yes
We love going to this ranch-turned-arboretum for the holidays. It is a pretty long walk around to see all the lights, but the sheer amount of lights, coupled with the stunning barn & silo make it worthwhile.
This year you need to get timed tickets ahead of time.
If You Want More: Lights at Cherry Creek North
The shops at Cherry Creek North (2401 E. 2nd Ave) have banded together to put together a free light display they call Winter Wanderland.
You’ll find sixteen blocks of tastefully-lighted white/gold trees that line the streets along the shops. One of the more unusual features are the special deciduous trees which have colored lights hanging from them in strands which pulse and change color to music from speakers nested in the branches. I had been used to seeing lights wound around trees, but after watching the short show, I found these kinds of lights really grew in appeal for me.
On Fillmore Plaza, they’ve placed a stage and a display which lights the ceiling and changes color over time. That’s the picture you see included with this article. On this plaza, they also have several booths that sell specialty food and gifts.
One other feature of Cherry Creek North is an art display that usually includes light as one of the features. In the past, it has features prisms and then dominoes. To get here, you can park at the Cherry Creek Mall and walk over, or you can try your luck with the metered parking on the streets in this area.
If You Want More: Holiday Lights at the City and County Building of Denver
1437 Bannock St., Denver, CO 80202-5337
These lights are a bit of a drive from south Denver, but they are free and pretty impressive. The City and County Building is a massive white semi-circular building with a row of columns in the front. As such, it makes a perfect canvas for an array of brightly-colored lights which, 9 News tells us, can be seen from the space station.
Around 2015, the city acquired the technology to do a 15-minute light show synchronized with music. I’ve been to it for 3 or 4 years now; the sound is good quality and the lights are bright and impressive. I especially like the snowflakes and twinkle lights.
The shows happen at 5:45 and 6:45. Here is a link to the official Choreographed Lights and Music site calendar, which will let you which dates the lights will be on. Note that the show doesn't play on Mondays when the city council meets. Even when the music show isn't running, the lights stay light from 5:45 to 10:45 pm. I've posted some pictures below, but of course they don't do the colors justice. You need to go in person to see how bright & saturated they are.