It's the most wonderful time of the year. Christmas has come to one of my favorite places to visit each and every year. Garvan Woodland Garden in Hot Springs, Arkansas is all aglow with more than 4 million lights which even looks like more reflecting off all the cascading waterfalls, ponds and the surrounding lake of this 210-acre garden.

You will truly be walking in a winter wonderland in which 18-acres are totally lighted and nestled between some of the tallest pine trees in the natural beauty of the Ouachita Mountains. As you stroll along the four and mile wooded shoreline that takes you over lighted bridges and boardwalks all while sipping some complimentary hot chocolate. Make sure you visit the Chipmunk Cafe for some scrumptious snacks and treats you can enjoy in front of the open fire pit in the gardens. This walking tour can also be seen by renting a golf cart for an extra fee. This is one of the largest Christmas light displays in the state of Arkansas and believe me, it's well worth the visit.

New this year for the Holiday Lights event is a new ice Dandelion in the Winter Garden display featuring an animated light display that uses something called "color blossoms. Dandelions seeds will be blown into the air and cascade in a wave of light through the Garden, thanks to some modern technology. Some old favorites return including 3 topiaries from the Mystic Creatures events of 2014-2015 and kids will love the ice tunnels and miniature train.While on your walking tour you will be mesmerized by the 50-ft tall Rose Tree display that features a 12-minutes of holiday music with animated light show.

Of course, one of the highlights of "Holiday Lights" which runs now through Dec. 31, is the all-natural wood glass chapel known as Anthony's Chapel, situated in a wooded area on a hill overlooking the gardens. The sheer peacefulness of standing inside the chapel looking out its tall glass windows at the lights below makes you completely understand the true meaning of Christmas.

Other upcoming events include the Jingle Pup Parade and Santa Nights at Holiday Lights. For more information on these events and more go HERE.

You can watch this video to get a sneak preview but until you are actually there walking through the displays and lights do you really get a sense how beautiful it really is.

Admission: $15 adults (13 and up), $5 ages 4-12, and free for ages 3 and younger. Holiday Lights is open daily from 5PM -9PM with Gates opening at 3PM. Closed on Christmas Day. Parking is free and the best time to visit is Mon-Thurs., You can expect long lines to get in on Friday through the weekend.


It's worth the short drive from Texarkana to visit Garvan Woodland Gardens this holiday season and create some memories that will last a lifetime for you and your family.

Also, if you are going to be traveling in the state of Arkansas, more than 60 communities join in the celebration of Arkansas' Trail of Holiday Lights, which begins the week of Thanksgiving and lasts through the New Year. Cities and towns host official lighting ceremonies, parades, pageants, music and more. Visit their Facebook page or go to

Click here for a listing of all holiday events in Arkansas.