Our Magical Nature Escapes

December 19, 2017

As we head into the last days of the holiday season, four nature escapes around the greater Fayetteville area are still lit up beautifully. Whether you’re visiting or showing off our area to guests, we recommend planning an evening out at one of these attractions. Each site is known for delighting young and old with their magical outdoor light displays and festive entertainment. The holidays have never shone so brightly in Cumberland County’s neck of the woods!

christmas lights

christmas lights

Christmas in the Park – December 19-21

Take a stroll along the ½-mile walking trail at Fayetteville’s Arnette Park to experience a magical retreat. This 100-acre park sits beside the Cape Fear River and offers the perfect setting for a winter wonderland. In addition to the park’s extensive light display, guests also enjoy a marshmallow roast, entertainment by local artists, a craft station, holiday movies on the big screen, visits with Santa and train rides on the Christmas Express.

Tip: Bring cash only to pay for park admission, plus a little extra for the other activities.

christmas lights

christmas lights

Christmas in Paradise – December 21-23

Head out to Paradise Acres, located in the Town of Hope Mills, for some country-style family fun. Christmas lights and decorations are spread out over 12 acres here, and families enjoy taking rides on the Paradise Acres Express, shopping in the Candy Store, playing on inflatables, roasting marshmallows and visiting Santa.

Tip: Save your appetite for the delicious Holiday Buffet spread, featuring a rotating menu of Southern comfort-food favorites, and fried Moon Pies.

christmas lights

christmas lights

Holiday Lights in the Garden – December 21-23 & 26-30

Marvel at the picturesque, synchronized light and music show on a mile-long stroll through the Cape Fear Botanical Garden, Fayetteville’s botanical sanctuary. Among many other festivities, families may participate in Caroling Hay Rides, Craft Building and Story Time with an Elf. The Authentique Café offers hot cocoa and coffee to keep everyone warm. Children will also delight in roasting s’mores and visiting Santa, while the adults will enjoy shopping for last-minute gifts in the garden’s unique gift shop.

Tip: Plan on feeding the whole family dinner from the onsite food truck—rotating between R Burger, Mash House, The Blind Pig NC, Ducka Ducka Concessions and Skewed Up.

christmas lights

christmas lights

Christmas Lights at Denton Ridge – December 22-23 & 29-30

Take time out from the busyness of the season for a night of down-home country revelry in the Town of Linden. A tram provides visitors with transportation around the Denton Ridge “village,” which is situated on a tree-lined ridge along the Lower Little River. Everything is adorned with Christmas lights, and live bluegrass and gospel music adds to the ambiance. Visitors love to purchase old-fashioned treats at the country store, observe the farm animals, stop by Santa’s workshop and the live nativity scene, roast marshmallows at a campfire and much more.

Tip: Check the Facebook page or call ahead to confirm current weather conditions before visiting Denton Ridge.

There are several other holiday events happening around Cumberland County through the end of the year, and you may find more details on all those festivities on the Fayetteville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Calendar of Events. Also, we recently shared with our visitors two destinations where our locals go for shopping, dining out and entertainment; read more about those popular places on “Shop, Eat and Play.”


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