Check out our list of the best FREE holiday light displays in Chicago. Grab the camera and some hot chocolate and get outside!
Oak Street-Chicago River
See the Mag Mile at its best! Thousands of lights grace Michigan Avenue between Oak Street and the Chicago River. Stroll on foot, hop on the free shopping trolley or grab one of the many CTA busses running down Michigan Ave.
Daley Center Christmas Tree
118 North Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60602
See the 70-foot tree donated by the John Colomer family of McHenry. This beautiful tree weighs over 11,900 pounds. Over 7,000 red, green and white lights adorn the tree and it is topped off with a brightly lit star. Fun Fact: Chicago’s first municipal Christmas tree was lit in 1913 on Christmas Eve by Mayor Carter H. Harrison in Grant Park.
Be sure to visit Santa’s House and the Christkindlmarket while you’re there!
Chicago, IL 60605
Located in Grant Park on Chicago’s lakefront, Buckingham Fountain gets a major makeover for the holidays. See thousands of lights glitter through the colored water at Chicago’s favorite fountain.
Lincoln Park ZooLights
2001 North Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
ZooLights is free and open to the public. Join the Lincoln Park Zoo for ice carving demonstrations, visits with Santa, warm drinks, cool crafts and more than one million beautiful lights.
Brookfield Zoo Holiday Magic
3300 Golf Road
Brookfield, IL 60513
December 26-New Year’s Day
4:00PM – 9:00PM
Holiday Magic at Brookfield Zoo features over 120 animated light displays and a million twinkling lights. Celebrate the holiday season with family and friends during Brookfield Zoos 29th annual Holiday Magic. Enjoy live entertainment, animals, professional ice carvers, train rides, a special Dolphin Show, and sing to the animals.
Navy Pier Winter WonderFest
600 East Grand Avenue
Head to Navy Pier for the free holiday lights and festivities. See the Christmas lights, attractions, rides, indoor ice skating, and of course, the Navy Pier fireworks.
Admission is free! Take advantage of the special Winter WonderFest parking rates.