Like many Huntsville families, we’ve made the Galaxy of Lights a holiday tradition. Driving through a twinkling wonderland is fun for every member of our family, especially when we’ve got our favorite Christmas music playing in the background. And for every year we’ve driven through the lights, we say, “Gee, we should walk through these” and then we NEVER do. I could say it’s because it’s too cold or our daughter was too young but the honest truth would be that we were being a little lazy.
Don’t be like us. Don’t be lazy.
The Galaxy of Lights Walking Nights are a totally different experience and children LOVE it. As magical as those lights are when you are driving, think of that times 10 when you are walking through them. The picture below is my daughter’s favorite “scene” on the trail, apparently it’s called the Icicle Forest. It’s pretty spectacular when you drive through it but imagine walking through it. Now imagine…wait for it…SNOW! Well, as close as we usually get in Alabama (i.e. the fake variety) but our children ATE IT UP.
Galaxy of Lights Walking Night Parent Tips
Some other details you should know about the GoL Walking Nights…
Santa will not be at Galaxy of Lights this year. But HBG will still be collecting letters to send to the North Pole! Don’t forget to bring your letter to Santa, and keep an eye out for the big mailbox near the beginning of the experience.
Near the entrance is some coffee for Mom and Dad ($1 and $4 options available) and if you walk just a little further down the trail, there is hot chocolate and cookies! The kind ladies and gentleman who serve it even offer a kid version and an adult version. Adults over 21 can even purchase a hot toddy to warm up their walk!
I would recommend that if your children are smaller or tend to be whiney about a long walk, you may want to bring a stroller or wagon with you. The whole path is stroller and wagon friendly. It took us almost an hour and half to do the whole thing but when we got home our daughter was out like a light. That in itself is worth the price of admission!
PRO-TIP: This year, Walking Night tickets are ONLY sold in advance for a specific night. To ensure a positive experience for each guest, there are a limited number of tickets each night, so make sure you purchase yours early.
Galaxy of Lights Drive-Thru Nights
If you’ve never been to the Galaxy of Lights at all, you can get details about Driving Nights here. Driving Nights start Thanksgiving Night and run through December 31st. Admission is $25/car.
Galaxy of Lights Walking Nights 2020 Details
When: Walking Nights – November 13 – 25 from 5:15 – 8:30 p.m. (last admission)
2020 Dog Walking Nights: November 16, 17, and 23
Where: Huntsville Botanical Garden (map)
How Much: Adults $10 members/$12 non-members, Children ages 3-17 $5 members/$6 nonmembers; Dogs $3
More Info: Purchase yours in advance and online!
Covid-19 Update: The Garden remains committed to the well-being of the community. Safety measures at Galaxy of Lights include thorough cleaning procedures, health and safety training for all employees and volunteers, requirements for face coverings, and social distancing protocols. In accordance with guidelines from the Alabama Department of Public Health, face masks or face coverings are required in all indoor locations at the Garden, as well as outdoor spaces where it is not possible to maintain six feet of distance from others not in your household. During Walking Nights, you will be indoors as you enter via the Guest Center and during a short segment of the walking path. Please bring a face mask or face covering to wear in these indoor locations. You can read a full list of the Garden’s health and safety guidelines for visitors here.
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Jennifer is the creator and co-editor of Rocket City Mom. She is also a compulsive writer, avid reader, occasional singer and former communications wizard turned toddler wrangler. You can often spot her and her little ones cruising the kiddie hot-spots in their "Rocket Van".