Friday, December 6, 2013


5 Tips for Austin's Trail of Lights

It's time for Austin's Trail of Lights!!!  But before you go, here are a few tips to make it a more enjoyable experience for you & your family.

I love the tradition that the City of Austin has created with the amazing Trail of Lights at Zilker Park.  And I was SO very happy to see them brought back after a few years hiatus.  It is a very popular Holiday tradition for the city of Austin, that brings out the crowds.

We had a chance to preview the lights last week during their light check and it is just such a fun experience.  My children were delighted to see all the characters and scenes they have on the trail this year.  And I love the fact that it is open for 2 weeks this year, instead of only one.  This will hopefully lessen the one concern I hear most about the Trail of Lights - the Crowds.

Year after year, all I hear from people is how crowded it is rather than how amazing the lights are, so I wanted to give you a few tips to make it fun for you & yours.

5 Tips for Austin's Trail of Lights

1. Go on a Weekday - This one should be a no-brainer.  And with the trail open for 2 weeks, the weekdays should be less crowded. Should be.

2. Take Advantage of the Zip Fast Pass - This year, the trail is offering a pass you can purchase to allow you to visit the trail 45 minutes before it opens to the general public.  It also gives you guaranteed seating for performances.  It's totally reasonable and children under 5 do not need a pass to go in with you.  It really makes sense to use this method if you are wanting to avoid the crowds.

3. Use the Shuttle to Park. You can buy advance parking passes online (the ONLY way to buy a parking pass) but I have heard the shuttles are so much faster.  With dedicated bus lines, you are zipping right to the entrance of the trail in no time and not waiting an hour to get into and out of Zilker Park.

4. Eat before you go.  You just can't predict what the crowds will be like and as much as I LOVE that the Trail has some really great food trailers out there, you might want to not go hungry for fear of waiting 45 minutes in line for hot chocolate. Just a suggestion....

5. Have Patience.  Be prepared for it to be busy.  It's a very popular event, so give yourself plenty of time to get there and see everything you want to see.  Rather than get upset about the crowds, embrace the tradition that everyone loves Trail of Lights.

I would be remiss to not mention that you must take time to visit the Zilker Tree as well.  We love to spin under the tree - another crazy Austin tradition, right? - and they have food trucks over there too!

For more information and a schedule of performances, visit the Austin Trail of Lights website.

No comments: