Top 5 things to do in Columbia during the holidays

From enchanting light displays to ice skating and holiday shopping, explore the top things to do this holiday season in the beautiful city of Columbia.

The holiday season is fast approaching, and if you're looking for a unique destination to celebrate the holidays, you should definitely consider Columbia, Maryland. This beautiful, vibrant community located between Washington, DC, and Baltimore boasts plenty of seasonal cheer and special events that make it a must-visit destination this winter. From outdoor adventures to shopping, dining, and more, make sure to include these top five things to do in your itinerary. 


Pro tip: for a limited time, you can book at any Placemakr property with 30% off November and December stays with code FRIDAY30.

1. See the Merriweather Symphony of Lights 
The Symphony of Lights is not just any typical display of holiday lights. This popular drive-through event features more than 100 animated and stationary holiday light displays, including Santa Claus, reindeer, snowmen, and more. Plus, it’s set to a seasonal score of classic and modern tunes. This beloved annual event benefits the Howard County General Hospital, so you'll not only experience the magic of holiday lights but also contribute to a good cause. Open nightly from November through early January. 

2. Go Ice Skating at Columbia Ice Rink 

What's a holiday season without ice skating? Bundle up and make your way to Columbia Ice Rink, where you can take part in public skating, figure skating, and ice hockey. The rink offers skate rentals, skating lessons, and various special events throughout the winter season. Plus, every Friday evening, there’s a DJ spinning festive music to skate to. 

3. Shop at The Mall in Columbia 

If you’re looking to get some holiday shopping done, head to The Mall in Columbia‌. This mall has over 200 stores, ranging from luxury brands to affordable retailers, as well as dining options and events. Decked out with thousands of glittering lights and beautifully decorated Christmas trees, the mall also offers extended holiday hours, so you can get everything on your list. 

4. Visit Howard County Conservancy's Winter Craft Fair 

If you're looking for a quirky and charming holiday shopping experience, visiting the Howard County Conservancy's Winter Craft Fair is a must. This annual event features live music, food, drinks, and fun activities for the whole family. From handmade jewelry to intricate pottery and artwork, it's the perfect place to find unique holiday gifts while supporting local artists. 

5. Partake in a Horse-Drawn Carriage Ride 

Experience the holiday charm of Columbia at a slower pace by taking a horse-drawn carriage ride through the charming downtown area of Columbia. As you make your way through the streets, you'll be treated to beautiful holiday decorations and festive lights. This unique experience is a must-do for any holiday traveler.

Similar posts

Stay in the loop.

Sign up for our emails to receive promotions, discounts, and exclusive content from your friends at Placemakr.