Places To See Christmas Lights In Vancouver And Portland

December 21, 2020
water Parade_of_Lights

If the year 2020 marks anything, it’s a year of constant change. The moment you think you can take a breath of fresh air, the year quickly reminds you that there’s more; often leaving you feeling like there’s no time to just be present in the moment. But that’s not how it has to be and that’s certainly not how we have to choose to end it. The Christmas season is a wonderful time of celebration, traditions, family, friends and reflecting on everything we already have to be grateful for. One of the common traditions during this time is attending events or properties that are lit up in the spirit of Christmas. If you’re looking for places to see Christmas lights in Vancouver or Portland, look no further. We have it covered!

  • Winter Wonderland Light Show
  • Drive Thru Zoo Lights
  • Holidays In The Hills
  • Christmas Ships Parade

Winter Wonderland Light Show

The Winter Wonderland light show has been a hit this Christmas season. With Covid creating limitations, the normal way of operating has been a challenge but people are proving themselves to meet the challenge and continue on in the spirit of Christmas. If you’re looking for an exceptional light show from the comforts of your vehicle then look no further! This show has such an overwhelming demand they have had to extend their hours. Starting every evening at 4:30pm until 11pm through December 26th, spectators will be able to enjoy over 250 light sets with many animated scenes. Since 1993, over two million visitors have come through to enjoy this holiday tradition which is why they couldn’t let Covid get in the way of it this year. To top it off, all proceeds go to benefit the Sunshine Division; a non profit that helps fight against hunger. In years past, this event would collect non perishable foods as part of the hunger relief effort but with certain restrictions in place, they are only collecting financial contributions which can be given online when purchasing a ticket. Ticket prices are between 24-32$ and must be purchased prior to the event at where you can also find more information on this event.

Drive Thru Zoo Lights

Everything is a little different this year but the Oregon Zoo Lights have figured out a way to still bring the joy of family traditions to this Christmas season. Instead of walking through the zoo like in years past, Oregon Zoo Lights has created a drive-thru experience for the whole family to enjoy. Open every day during selected time slots until January 10th, this winter light event displays over 1.5 million brightly colored lights with slots filling up fast! Tickets need to be purchased online and will be available up to one week before your visit time, costing between 40-65$ per vehicle. Zoo members can also enjoy 25% off their purchase. Masks do not need to be worn inside the vehicle but are expected when interacting with zoo staff. Keep in mind that this event does have limited attendance in order for everything to run smoothly but you can count on the drive-thru experience to be a winter tradition that can still be enjoyed by all! Learn more at

Holidays In The Hills

Washougal Motocross is putting on their first annual light show. A drive-thru experience that takes you for a 1 mile loop through the 150 acre motocross park. Along the way you will see lighted displays from inside your vehicle that people of all ages can enjoy. The idea behind this event is to provide families and people everywhere a practical and easy way to spend quality time with their loved ones all while enjoying the Christmas spirit. They are open Wednesdays through Sundays 5-9pm until January 1st 2021. Tickets can be purchased online for 15$ for one round trip or 25$ for two round trips that can be used the day of purchase or any day they are open. A two round trip purchase ticket can be used all in the same day or on two separate days. Visit for more details.

Christmas Ships Parade

The Christmas Ships Parade is a Northwest tradition that has been operating since 1954. Depending on the day, ships travel up and down the Willamette and/or Columbia River along specific routes with various stops on the way. This is a free event in which spectators can park at designated locations or eat at specific restaurants that have views of the ships as they pass by. All sorts of festive lighted displays can be seen from various points along the river, which is a great way to enjoy a lighted show that is significantly different from the rest. Parade times are scheduled between Dec.16-22nd. Check out for more detailed information.

These are just some of the many places to see Christmas lights in Vancouver and Portland. If you’re looking for neighborhoods that are all decked out in lights as well, you can find a list of homes via Google under 2020 Holiday Lights Map for SW Washington and Oregon or look through the app Nextdoor for their Cheer Map which also highlights neighborhoods in your area. We wish you a very Merry Christmas full of family, friends and joy this Christmas season. Enjoy the lights!

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