Huntsville is home to so many exciting events during the holidays, but for 26 years one of the most treasured traditions is the Huntsville Botanical Garden's Galaxy of Lights. What is the Galaxy of Lights? It's millions of lights that Clark Griswold only hopes to aspire to at Christmas. The Galaxy of Lights is two and a half miles of Rocket City engineering at its best.
This project that was started in 1996 has grown to feature more than 200 light displays and immersive holiday experiences. You can see everything from the twelve days of Christmas and butterflies to dinosaurs and traditional holiday sights like Santa and snowmen. Plus, during Walking Nights, you’ll explore dazzling scenes that surround you with lights, lasers, and even (artificial) snow! No matter how cold it is, walking or driving nights let you leave with a warm and fuzzy feeling.
For the best experience at Galaxy of Lights Driving Nights, this family highly recommends going early in the season. If you plan on walking during Walking Nights, you should get your tickets in advance to guarantee admission. If you prefer to drive try to go in early December on a weeknight, and be sure to arrive right at opening time or a little before! This will help you to avoid long lines. Here are a few other tips we have gathered along the way:
- Grab dinner before or bring it along with you in the car (or pack drinks/snacks).
- Make sure all your car windows are clean - you don’t want to obstruct the view.
- Everyone should take a potty break before going to Galaxy.
- Pups in the car are welcome, but Fido won’t be able to get out during the drive. Only on the designated Dog Walking nights can your furry friends enjoy the lights on their own four feet.
- Wear comfortable shoes if attending a Walking Night. Two and a half miles of dazzling displays await you.
- Make sure your headlights are off so everyone in front of you can enjoy the lights.
- Carpool! Get the most for your money - Galaxy charges per car.
- Clean your camera lens - a dirty lens can cause those light flares in photos.
- Thank every person you see, many of them are completely volunteering their time in the cold.
- Tell all your friends and family to come out to this magical event.
Galaxy of Lights is a family holiday tradition at our house. The money helps support the Huntsville Botanical Garden and that is a mission we can totally get behind. If you go to Galaxy of Lights and find yourself in a long line - that may not be moving very fast - just remember the reason for the season and that everyone is working very hard to make the line as efficient as possible. Just sit back and relax with your friends and family. Personally, we enjoyed a fun game of “Heads Up” while we waited (app on our phone). Make sure to add Galaxy of Lights to your list of holiday to-dos. It will become a family tradition in no time!
Dates and Times:
November 11-27 (Closed Thanksgiving Day) and December 17 – January 1 (Closed Christmas Day)
5:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Time of last admission)
Dog Walking Nights:
Every Monday and Tuesday during Walking Nights (November 14, 15, 21, 22 and December 19, 20, 26, 27)
5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Time of last admission)
Pricing: Walking Nights
Garden Member Adult - $13-$16
Garden Member Child - $7-$10
Public Adult - $16-$19
Public Child - $9-$12
Dogs - $4
Purchase at Gate
Garden Member Adult - $20
Garden Member Child - $12
Public Adult - $25
Public Child - $15
Dogs - $4
Pricing: Driving Nights
Garden Member - $20
Public - $25
Garden Member 5 Pack - $85
Public 5 Pack - $110
Military w/ID - N/A for Pre-Purchased tickets
Purchase at Gate
Garden Member - $30-$35
Public - $30-$35
Garden Member 5 Pack - N/A
Public 5 Pack - N/A
Military w/ID - $25-$30