Top Ten Reasons to Visit Indy During the Holiday Season
Circle of lights 4

Indianapolis always has a lot to offer, and the holiday season is no different. From numerous shopping options to winter attractions, your holiday spirit will be at an all-time high in the Circle City! See our top 10 reasons Indy should be at the top of your travel list this holiday season:


10. All your beloved luxury brands in one place

The Fashion Mall

From Burberry to Tiffany, Louis Vuitton to Kate Spade, The Fashion Mall at Keystone at the Crossing is the place to find gifts for the fashionistas on your list. Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom anchor this upscale mall full of a wide variety of specialty retailers. Take a break and enjoy a meal at local favorites like Napolese Pizzeria or Café Patachou.


9.  Shop local to win BIG

Spot Andy in Indy

Contest Alert: Visit Indy is giving away over $2,000 in prizes this season. Here’s how to win: Spot Andy, Indy’s roaming reindeer, at any of the eight local boutiques, snap a photo, and share on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter with the tag #SpotAndyInIndy. One winner will be selected each week. Click here for locations and prize details.

8. Where memories of Christmas past come alive

Holidays o nthe Prairie

Experience the holidays the 1830s way during Holidays On The Prairie at Conner Prairie, a Smithsonian-affiliated interactive history park. Meet characters in their homes and learn what games, foods, and pranks were enjoyed over 150 years ago. Conner Prairie offers history lessons for the whole family as well as an impressive gingerbread village.

7. 'Tis the season for holiday carols and dancing Santas

Yuletide Celebration

Renowned opera singer Angela Brown and Broadway star Ben Crawford will co-host the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra's 29th annual Yuletide Celebration. With the range of experiences from tap dancing Santas to a special rendition of 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, it promises to be a musically diverse celebration everyone can enjoy.

6. Frosty family fun is just around the corner

Jolly Days

The world's largest children's museum, The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, welcomes winter with Jolly Days Winter Wonderland, an exhibit for the whole family. Visitors can “ice skate” around a rink in their socks, go ice fishing, or ride around in the holiday train. Santa is also sure to make an appearance!

5. Theatre and gifts are one-of-a-kind

Mass Ave Shopping - Homespun

Find that one-of-a-kind gift for that hard-to-shop-for family member and enjoy a fringe holiday performance along Mass Ave, Indy's art and theatre district. Home to an array of local theaters, chef-owned restaurants, art galleries, and independent boutiques, this is the perfect place to discover Indy-only gifts (pictured: Homespun Handmade) and entertainment.

4. Feed your holiday spirit with a dinner theatre tradition

Beef & Boards Christmas

Indy's traditional dinner theatre rings in the holiday season with A Beef & Boards Christmas. The holidays are celebrated with song and story—as well as excellent food, drinks, and desserts! Beef & Boards has held this annual holiday show for over 20 years, making it a much-loved family tradition.

3. Shopping, shopping, and more shopping

Cirlce Centre

Located right in the middle of downtown, Circle Centre contains over 125 shopping, dining, and entertainment options. Check out stores like H&M or Gap, grab dinner at St. Elmo's or Harry & Izzy's, or catch the latest blockbuster. If you're staying overnight, check into one of the 12 hotels connected to the shopping center. See why Indianapolis was ranked one of the 10 best shopping cities in the U.S. by Forbes.

2. A light show spectacular

Christmas at the Zoo

Once the first zoo in the nation to have a holiday lights spectacular, Christmas at the Zoo celebrates its 47th anniversary this year at the Indianapolis Zoo. Now the event also offers Santa's workshop, caroling, carousel rides, cookie decorating, and more. A holiday season in Indianapolis wouldn't be complete without visiting this family-friendly destination.

1. A beloved holiday tradition officially kicks off the season

Circle of Lights

Indy's iconic holiday tradition, Circle of Lights, kicks off the day after Thanksgiving with the Tree Lighting of the iconic Soldiers & Sailors Monument on Monument Circle. “The Voice” winner and Indy native Josh Kaufman will provide the entertainment, and the 242-foot display of lights and garland will transform the monument into a Christmas tree. For more than 52 years, this event has drawn thousands of families to mark the beginning of the holiday season.