Let this sink in: You’ll never experience Christmas with your kids at this age again…ever.
For me, with kids who are growing up before my very eyes, that hits home. These are the special years, when Santa and lights and falling snow are still magical.
Stone Mountain Christmas is the perfect place to unplug from your phone, forget about the laundry, put the stress of work behind you and simply enjoy Christmas in the city together.
Stone Mountain Christmas is an opportunity to make every moment one to remember!
The season begins Nov. 13, 2021 and runs on select dates through Jan. 2, 2022.
This year, there will be a new Christmas LaserShow to enjoy at Stone Mountain Christmas. Celebrate the spirit of the season with this all new 20-minute experience. Your favorite holiday songs will be brought to life with unique videos, new special effects and a fireworks finale!
We had a chance to see the new show, and it was amazing! More on that below.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the desire to maintain social distancing, Stone Mountain Park’s Snow Mountain has been canceled again in 2021.
OUR FAVORITE THINGS AT STONE MOUNTAIN CHRISTMAS
THE SING-A-LONG TRAIN
My boys adore trains, so there is no doubt that this is our favorite.
Taking in the views around Stone Mountain Park, singing Christmas carols, seeing the lights along the way, and watching the telling of a very special story make this train ride one of the best. Make sure to bring extra sweatshirts, or maybe a blanket in your backpack — the open-air train car can get a bit chilly, especially after the sun goes down.
This is a popular attraction and even though it’s a big train, it can still be at capacity during very busy times. We were advised to come to the train at least 15 minutes before the departure time — but it seemed like 20 minutes ahead was probably best. It fills up fast! (The times are listed at the train station each day.)
Our tip: Sit on the left side of the train! (The mountain side.) If you sit on the left, you’ll have the best view of the Christmas lights and the show at Pebble Ridge. The train stops at Pebble Ridge and you can see the show from your seats — even if you’re on the right — but it’s easier if you’re on the left.
My son loved the sing-a-long portion of the train ride the best. A fun holiday-themed video gets you started and gives you all the words to the songs so you can sing along.
The train runs until 9 p.m. each night during the Christmas event — so you’ll be able to find a time that fits into your schedule.
THE SNOW ANGEL’S CHRISTMAS PARADE
One of the best parts of the Stone Mountain Christmas experience is the Snow Angel’s nightly Christmas Parade, featuring festive music, Bumble and Rudolph, spectacular floats, dancers and singers from the various shows, the bubble man and of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus. We just loved seeing Angelina the Snow Angel in her amazing float! It all happens just before the Enchanted Tree Lighting.
Grab some hot cocoa before the show begins and line up along the street’s edge for a spectacular parade of dancing, singing and more. This happens once a night at 6 p.m., so don’t miss it! The best viewing for the parade is in the Expo area. After the parade ends, head on over to the Memorial Lawn to catch the Tree Lighting Ceremony. (The parade lasts about 15 minutes.)
ENCHANTED CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY
The Enchanted Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is really, really great and it’s an absolute must-see. Spoiler Alert: Santa makes a high-flying entrance — and it is really something! All the kids around us were just completely amazed seeing Santa fly above us in his sleigh. Then watch as they light up the giant Christmas tree with holiday cheer.
This event happens nightly at 6:30 p.m. on the Memorial Lawn.
NEW IN 2021! WORLD’S LARGEST CHRISTMAS LIGHT SHOW
Don’t miss this ALL NEW IMMERSIVE holiday experience! Celebrate the spirit of the season while you listen to your favorite holiday songs choreographed to imagery and lights.
Y’all, this was spectacular. The 20 minute show on the Memorial Lawn was filled with continuous songs, an amazing light show, lasers, and fireworks. It really lived up to the hype! Watching all the lights on the face of Stone Mountain was just really, really cool and my kids just loved it.
The show happens twice a night — at 6:45 p.m. and 8 p.m. So if you don’t want to stay after the tree lighting, you can catch it again toward the end of the night. (Note: On Christmas Eve, it will only be shown once at 7 p.m.)
RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER: THE MOVIE
Little ones will love this!
See the story of everyone’s favorite reindeer and his very shiny nose on the Memorial Lawn, right after the Christmas Light Show. Shown at 7:15 p.m. and again at 7:45 p.m., this 9-minute show is totally cute. (Note: On Christmas Eve, it will be shown once at 6:45 p.m.)
Visit the SkyHike area of the park and enjoy an immersive walk-through experience that puts you in the middle of the celebration!
This is a quick walk-through, but my kids just loved dancing to the music in the middle of the lights that were synced up to the songs. It was a fun, little break!
And remember, at the North Pole, there’s always a chance of snow!
THE MUSICAL FROSTED FOREST
The Memorial Hall Walkway has been transformed into The Musical Frosted Forest during Stone Mountain Christmas!
Stroll through this extraordinary walkway of magical lights synced to festive music. It’s fun, and the lights above are just gorgeous. Definitely a hit. This walkway is lit up from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. each night.
THE SNOW ANGEL SNOWFALL CELEBRATION AND FIREWORKS FINALE
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!
Snow in Georgia? Yes! It happens during Stone Mountain Christmas. Behold the overhead flight of the Snow Angel and join in as she makes your Christmas wishes come true.
This fun event happens on the Memorial Lawn toward the end of the night, at 8:45 p.m. Enjoy a flying Snow Angel, fireworks, and — of course — SNOW!
SANTA’S OFFICE WINDOW VISIT
Bring your Christmas wishes to the Big Man himself, live and in-person, at his North Pole office!
Enjoy a chat with Santa while you get a peek at where all the magic begins. This socially-distant set up is a great way to see Santa and stay safe too! Santa has office hours, so make sure to check the schedule when you arrive. He’ll be at Stone Mountain Christmas until December 24, 2021.
RUDOLPH’S MERRY LITTLE MEET & GREET
Some of your favorite holiday characters — Rudolph, Clarice, and Bumble — return to Stone Mountain Park from the North Pole!
They’ve got a great picture spot set up at the Character Circle with a background that’s great for photos. (Right behind the glass blowing shop.) The characters rotate, so not all the characters are available at each session. Check the schedule when you arrive for times!
MISTLETALES AND FROSTED FABLES
For the littles members of your group, make sure to check out MistleTales at The Gingerbread House. It is Atlanta’s most heartwarming show.
Mrs. Claus has a special Christmas treat just for you: heartwarming holiday tales! Hear about The Littlest Christmas Tree and more. Taking place several times each day, this is great for kids ages 2-8.
Also at the Gingerbread House, check out the Frosted Fables puppet shows. Santa’s favorite baker, Candy, returns to tell the story of everyone’s favorite cookie — The Gingerbread Man! This is also great for younger children, but I’ve got to tell you — my kids (who are 9 and 11) also really loved it.
A WISH FOR SNOW
Hear the story of Angelina the Snow Angel, and…participate! This show is held at The Dogwood several times during the Christmas event, and the show lasts about 15 minutes.
If you’d like to participate, note that participants are chosen 10 minutes before showtime. Just meet at the show sign in front of the Dogwood venue. Have fun!
A CHRISTMAS CAROL
Enjoy a hilarious take on Charles Dickens’ classic tale of redemption!
Held on the Azalea Stage, this take on A Christmas Carol is guaranteed to have everyone in your group laughing. A ragtag band performs a funny rendition of the story in just 20 minutes!
ENJOY THE TINSELTONE CAROLERS
The Tinseltone Carolers are back and better than ever.
The carolers are one of my personal favorites, with festive holiday music and singing of holiday favorites. The songs are wonderful, and their rendition of Jingle Bells is lovely!
Looking for more Atlanta Christmas fun? Don’t miss our Definitive Guide To Holiday Happenings Around The City!
THE POLAR EXPRESS IN 4D
I always get a little misty when I read the Polar Express. Maybe it’s because sometimes, when all the hustle and bustle gets too much, it’s hard to hear the bell.
This experience is a condensed version of the movie, and leaves you with the same warm feeling at the end.
GREAD LOCOMOTIVE CHASE ADVENTURE GOLF
We love mini-golf and this is a great course — and it’s decorated with Christmas lights!
As the evening wears on, it gets more crowded, so if you have little ones, best to go here early.
CINNAMON BREAD (AND OTHER FOOD!)
For the first time this year we got two loaves of Stone Mountain Park’s cinnamon bread. They are ooey-gooey and delicious!
We ate an entire loaf that night and had the second loaf for breakfast the next morning. It’s delicious and amazing (and addictive…so get two loaves)! You can find them at Base Camp BBQ.
There’s also plenty more to eat during Stone Mountain Christmas! If you’re looking for something more substantial — they’ve got plenty of quick service restaurants around the Crossroads area that are open for business.
Besides cinnamon rolls and cinnamon bread, Base Camp BBQ features Williamson Brothers Bar-B-Q and their original homemade Southern style BBQ Sauce, rich with 16 different spices uniquely blended and loved by millions nationwide.
The Marketplace is the place to go for quick, grab-and-go meals. The open style market provides your family with lots of ready-to-go choices.
Pick from deli sandwiches, salads, fresh fruit and bakery goods. Or if you’re looking for some heartier fare, opt for freshly baked pizza, grilled chicken sandwiches, hamburgers or crispy chicken strips and french fries.
WHEN TO GO TO STONE MOUNTAIN CHRISTMAS
Saturdays and holidays are the most crowded at the park. If you want to go on the weekend, consider Sunday and get there early.
Shows have limited seating and the Park recommends you get there 15 minutes before each show to ensure a spot. The earlier shows are less crowded and you can likely walk up a little later.
In 2021, the park recommends guests purchasing Attractions Passes do so in advance as daily capacity will be limited due to social distancing requirements.
MAKE IT A WEEKEND WITH ATLANTA EVERGREEN MARRIOTT
If you live a ways from Stone Mountain Park like we do, consider making your Christmas experience a special weekend. We stayed at Atlanta Evergreen Marriott after our Christmas excitement.
The rooms were cozy, and we enjoyed a gorgeous view of the lake. Our room included two queen beds (which were VERY comfy!), a mini fridge, and a desk. Because the weather was nice, we also enjoyed sitting on the patio that looks over the lake.
When we were not enjoying Stone Mountain Christmas, we were playing at the hotel. We played at both the indoor and outdoor pools (both are heated!) and hot tubs. The boys also enjoyed a round of over-sized chess next to the pool.
While we were at the pool in the evening, hubby and I enjoyed a few drinks from Stonewall’s Lounge (which also includes light snacks and a pool table). For breakfast we indulged in our cinnamon bread, but picked up lattes from Mountain Brew Café (featuring Starbucks coffee).
If you’re not eating at SMP, then consider breakfast, lunch or dinner at Waterside Restaurant. This casual buffet also offers weekend specials of crab legs and prime rib – yum!
The hotel is inside Stone Mountain Park, so you will be required to pay the one-time entrance fee into the park. Once there, you will receive a guest pass, allowing you to come and go from the park as necessary.
There is no shuttle to the Crossroads area where the Christmas events are located, but it is a short 5-minute drive with ample parking spaces.
MORE PLACES TO STAY NEAR THE PARK
DISCOUNT OPPORTUNITIES FOR STONE MOUNTAIN CHRISTMAS
Looking for discounts to Stone Mountain Christmas? Here are a few you are sure to love.
Snow Mountain & Christmas Combo Pass. (Note: This is not available in 2021, since Snow Mountain has been canceled again this year due to COVID-19.) Snow Mountain has a snow tubing hill with real show and a kids play area. This is a separate ticket from Stone Mountain Christmas, but you can combine the two with a combo pass that includes two-hours at Snow Mountain, plus all the celebrations of Stone Mountain Christmas. You can do both in the same day, or spread the fun of a tubing session and holiday shows over the season.
Christmas 1-Day Attractions Pass. This ticket includes all the fun Stone Mountain Christmas activities, plus access to the Scenic Railroad, Dinosaur Explore, Mini Golf, and more.
Free meal and unlimited drinks. Purchase your Christmas Adventure Pass online and get a free meal from Marketplace and unlimited drink refills in addition to the attractions pass.
Mountain Membership. Get a Mountain Membership and enjoy 12 months of Stone Mountain visits, including Stone Mountain Christmas.
Snow Mountain Pass. (Note: Snow Mountain has been canceled for 2021 due to COVID-19.) Just excited about playing in real snow? Get your pass here.
MORE WAYS TO SAVE MONEY AT STONE MOUNTAIN PARK CHRISTMAS
- Take your camera and try to snag some pictures with the characters.
- Bring a thermos full of hot chocolate and a few disposable cups.
- Pack a meal and bring it with you. You can bring your food into the park…or you can eat it in your car.
- Check Facebook for specials. In the past Stone Mountain Christmas tickets have gone on sale for $19.99 plus tax through the social media outlet.
- Join the fun during Scout Days. Girl and Boy Scout troops are invited to Stone Mountain Christmas and Snow Mountain for a special discount. (Note: No word yet on Scout Days in 2021.)
MORE ATLANTA HOLIDAY FUN:
- CHRISTMAS TRAIN RIDES: 23 Spectacular Train Rides in Georgia and the Southeast
- CHRISTMAS EVENTS: Christmas in Atlanta: Your Guide To Only The Very Best Christmas Events
- CHRISTMAS TREES: 20+ Unforgettable Christmas Tree Farms in Atlanta You’ll Adore
- CALLAWAY CHRISTMAS: Callaway Gardens Christmas: Tips To Beat the Boring Lines
- GARDEN LIGHTS: Atlanta Botanical Garden Lights: Memorable Holiday Fun
Disclosure: Thank you to SMP for inviting us to the Christmas celebrations, and to Marriott for the complimentary overnight. The opinions here are still all my own!
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