24 hours in Hershey, PA for the Holidays – Hersheypark Christmas Candylane, Sweet Lights, Hershey Lodge, Water Works and Chocolate World!

The weekend before Thanksgiving the boys and I packed up the car for a quick + festive visit to Hershey, PA for this Holiday season. With turkey day being so late this year, there were less weekends before Christmas and scheduling things during this time is always a challenge – but I am SO HAPPY we were able to sneak away for a weekend and start out the Holidays with a BANG in the Sweetest Place on Earth!

This post is all about sharing with you just HOW MUCH you can squeeze into a super fun 24 hours away in Hershey, PA – especially during the Holidays, there is SO MUCH going on!

We drove from our house on Saturday morning after an easy morning, made a quick stop at Troeg’s for an early lunch {as we always do} and then hit up Hersheypark at 12:00 just as they opened for their Christmas Candylane fun!

Christmas at Hershey is THE MOST MAGICAL! It’s super festive and the park is lit up like crazy – it’s so beautiful to be able to see and walk around the park this time of year.

My absolute favorite part of Hersheypark during the Holidays is that Santa and his 9 reindeer come to visit. Stopping by Santa’s Stables inside the park is incredible – the live reindeer are there for everyone to see, including Rudolph.

Side Note Pro Tip: Come for Christmas Candyland and make sure you get the refillable hot chocolate mug! It’s $12 for this mug and you get unlimited refills while you are there. It was such a nice treat to have a warm drink while we were at the park in the cold – plus the Hershey hot cocoa is INCREDIBLE! For me it has a incredible hint of toasted marshmallow and that’s just my absolute favorite. I think we refilled this 4 times during our visit + the kids and I shared. It was such a good deal, not to mention the artwork on each cup is drawn by a local kiddo & a portion from each cup sale is donated to Children’s Miracle Network in Hershey!

And aside from the Holiday decor and unlimited hot chocolate, there are so many rides open for the kids {and adults!} to enjoy. We are always so surprised with how much is open and how much we get to do inside the park during the November/December months.

Making Memories with my boys.

It’s so nice to walk around the park as it starts to get dark and you can really enjoy everything that is lit up and all the decor. I like to get there as close to park opening as possible so the boys can enjoy all the rides they want and then as it starts to get later we can chill and bit, cozy up in the stroller with a blanket and enjoy the lights! They couldn’t get enough of Santa + his reindeer on the roller coaster track – ha!

Then as it really starts to get dark you can really enjoy the over 4 million lights inside the park!

When we finished enjoying Christmas Candylane, it was time to hit up Sweet Lights! Another reason I like to hit up the park early, so we can make sure everyone’s awake and happy for my favorite light show.

After a long afternoon in the park, it’s always nice to get warmed up in the car and enjoy the 600+ illuminated and animated light displays. It’s the most perfect way to kick off the holiday season for sure, you get to listen to holiday music from your radio, timed to the lights through a 2 mile drive – its very magical and festive ! A incredible way to end a sweet day in Hershey!

This trip the fun wasn’t over for us yet, we had a room waiting for us a the Hershey Lodge and I had made dinner reservations at Fire & Grain {another favorite!} – being able to spend the night and continue the Hershey fun the next day is always such a treat.

Not to mention, the all of the Hershey properties do a fantastic job at decorating for the holidays. We were able to sleep in and wake up to a snowy day in Hershey the next morning, so you know what that means?!

Time to hit the Water Works!

If you stay overnight at the Hershey Lodge you can take advantage of using their indoor waterpark facilities, which we always do – especially during any winter stays! They have water slides, fun obstacles for the kids and a great splash area for younger kiddos. Definitely a great way to start or end any weekend away!

After spending an entire morning at the Water Works, we checked out of the hotel and made our way over to Chocolate World. We usually start or end our Hershey visit here – depending on timing this week it worked out best for us to hit it up on our way home, which was perfect. We kept it short and sweet with a Chocolate World ride, a snack and {in the holiday spirit!} letting the boys pick out a small treat – they went with a small Hershey + Reese’s Hot Wheel car, which I was totally fine with adding to our collection.

All in all, it was a quick but amazing 24 hours in Hershey. As you can see we did a TON and of course we didn’t even do it all. Staying in a Hersheypark resort hotel you get complimentary tickets to the Hershey Gardens and the Hershey Story Museum – which we always intend to use but time always gets away from us at the end! If you’ve got older kids, its definitely worth checking out at some point!

If you are interested, I did another whole post on the benefits + perks of staying in a Hershey Hotel! You can check out that post here.

Thanks so much for following along our Chocolate Covered adventures this holiday season! I’d love to know if you have plans to hit up Hershey soon or in the coming year – let me know!

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1 Comment

  • Reply Patty December 4, 2019 at 6:51 am

    Really enjoyed your post information and photos! Yes, I plan on visiting Hershey at least twice a year, always brings out great childhood memories for me!

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