Hersheypark Christmas Candylane: A Family Holiday Tradition

Hersheypark Christmas Candylane is a must do if you live within 4-6 hours of Hershey, PA. Even if you don’t you should add it to you holiday bucket list! The Hersheypark Christmas Candylane event is an great family holiday tradition that you and your family will love year after year.

About a month before Christmas we packed in the car and drove the 4 hours to visit Hershey, Pennsylvania. Visiting Hershey, PA is one of our favorite family traditions because it has so many fun attractions.  For the holiday event we visited Hershey Chocolate World and Hersheypark.

They are within walking distance to each other and offer lots of holiday fun!! I wrote a previous post about our visit to Chocolate World and you can check it out at Hershey Chocolate World. Today I want to share all the cool things you can do at Hersheypark Christmas Candylane.

Hersheypark Holidays

Day 1: Night Visit to Hersheypark Christmas Candylane

Hersheypark offers seasonal events through out the year during Halloween(Read about our visit to Hersheypark in the Dark) and Springtime.  We happened to have a fairly warm weekend in November and made last minute reservations at the Hampton Inn & Suites Hershey for a night to experience Hersheypark Christmas Candylane. For on-site lodging check out our visit to Hersheypark Camping Resort.

The kids had sports in the morning so we didn’t leave until about 12.  That had us arriving at dinner time.  We surprised the kids and had lunches packed in the car and ready to go.  The drive takes you through some really pretty parts of Pennsylvania.

We have driven it so many times!  If you need to stop for snacks or bathroom breaks I suggest stopping at a Sheetz. They are clean, have a gas station and have many snack options. It’s also a half way point for us and a good time for a stretch.

Hersheypark Holidays

We arrived around dusk, checked into our hotel and started our way to the park.  The hotel is a 5 minute drive to Hersheypark. We had plans to take the Sweet Light Trolley tour and I had ordered tickets before we arrived.

The trolley takes you through a guided tour of miles of holiday lights.  You can drive this yourself but we opted for the tickets so we could relax and enjoy the lights.  It is spectacular!! They sing songs and the lights are incredible. We all loved it and you receive a sweet treat during your ride!!

We toured Hershey Chocolate World before the trolley tour and made our way over to Hersheypark after the trolley. Again I purchased our tickets online.

One of the things I really loved is you can enter the park the day before your actual purchase tickets.  2.5 hours before closing!! We had tickets for Sunday but were able to enter the park at 7:30 on Saturday night.  This was a really cool perk and all I had to do was show our Sunday tickets.  Always check the website for times and to confirm.

Hersheypark Holidays

Hersheypark Christmas Candylane Attractions

On Saturday we wanted to see all the seasonal attractions and we saved most of  the rides for Sunday.  A lot of the attractions are evening attractions and we were going to leave Sunday afternoon to drive home.  The attractions during the evening are:

  • Storytime-Join an Elf and Hershey Characters for a special holiday story.
  • Zoomerica-This is the zoo connected to the park and is included in park admission.
  • Noel-A light show synchronized to Christmas music. (My favorite!!)
  • Visit with Santa-Meet Santa in his themed cottage.
  • Santa’s Reindeer Stables-All 9 live reindeer!!
  • Ice skating- Rental fee applies.
  • Character Meet and Greet- We met Hershey, Reese and Jolly Ranger but you will see a variety of characters.

Saturday night we watched Noel and visited Santa and his reindeer.  We also went on a few rides. Not all Hersheypark attractions are open.  Please check the website.  A lot are open and we were not lacking for things to do.  Our favorites were:

  • Laff Track(Indoor Dark Rollercoaster) Has a fun house feel!  This also had the longest line.  If you want to ride it arrive early or at the end of the night. (42 inches to ride)
  • Kissing Tower-A tower that lifts up and rotates.  Gorgeous views of the town and park. (All can Ride)
  • Reese’s Extreme Cup Challenge- Shooting ride! Really fun! We rode this the most! (36 inches to ride)   This has been closed and will reopen in 2019 as a new attraction.
  • Monorail-This takes you around the park and it was a nice way to see everything from a different view. (All)
  • 2018 Dates: Select dates November 16th-January 1st.

The park has a really cute way of checking height.  They are set up by candy character.  So you could be a Kiss or a Reese or a Twizzler.  My kids were Kisses (36′-42), Resses (42′-48), and Hershey (48′-54′).  Outside the park there are places to check their height by standing next to a statue of the character.

We stayed until 10:00pm close at the park. It was so beautiful walking around and seeing the lights all over the park. Remember to pack warm! We wore hats, gloves, and winter coats.  When the sun goes down the temperature will drop!

We were having so much fun that we went back in to Hershey Chocolate World and took a few rides on the Factory Tour.  At around 10:45pm we left the park!! It was a packed day but we had so much fun!!

hersheypark holidays
Hershey Chocolate World

Day 2: Hersheypark

Sunday morning we ate breakfast at the hotel.  It was typical bagels, cereal, yogurt, and a few hot choices.  My kids love hotel breakfast so they were very happy.  I love coffee…so I was happy too!!

Then we packed up, checked out and were first in line to enter the park!! I am an early person. I always arrive at theme parks before opening. This was no different. The employees were so nice and they let my kids be the one to open the gates.  They still talk about how they opened the park!!


On Sunday we spent the day riding attractions again and riding some that we missed the day before.  There was not much holiday events in the morning so we used the time to explore the park.

Family travel is so important to us and we always pick up an ornament from our trips.  Near the exit they have a holiday store with all different ornaments. We also stopped at Hershey Chocolate World again to take a final ride on the factory tour.  After that we had to say goodbye to Hershey and made our way back home.  As we drove home we were already talking about when we would make it back!!

Next Post: 25 Amazing Things to Do in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Want more Hersheypark planning tips? Check out my post about Hershey Chocolate World and Hersheypark in the Dark.

Hersheypark Christmas Candylane Hershey Pennsylvania


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