Free Opryland Christmas Lights Ceremony

by Sami

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The time has come once again for the free Opryland Christmas Lights Ceremony – the unofficial kickoff to the Christmas season here in Nashville!

opryland lights

Free Opryland Christmas Lights Ceremony

Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville flipped the switch on their millions of Christmas lights on Thursday, November 9, 2023. The free Opryland Christmas lighting ceremony took place at 5:30 pm.

I do have good news though! This year, Opryland will flip the switch on the Christmas lights EVERY NIGHT. If you’ve never been there for the magical moment in-person, this is your year to see it.

The lighting ceremony marks the beginning of their annual Country Christmas celebration that will run through January 1, 2024.

Buy tickets for ICE! and all the Opryland Christmas activities NOW!
(Save up to 30% off when you bundle…)

Opryland Christmas Lighting Videos

Watch the lights turn on in 2023, including a fireworks display:

Here is the entire 2018 Opryland Christmas Lights Ceremony from start to finish:

Watch the video of the Opryland Christmas Lighting Ceremony from the Grand Re-Opening Celebration in 2010 (featuring Santa, fireworks AND The Rockettes):

A Country Christmas has been hailed as one of the “Ten Great Places to Catch up with Santa” by USA Today; “The Most Christmassy Hotel in the Nation” by the Travel Channel’s Extreme Christmas; one of the top 10 places to spend Christmas in the world by Travel + Leisure; and a “Nashville treasure” by Southern Living.

Gaylord Opryland cyber monday sale kids pointsettia tree

All season, I’ll be sharing our family’s first-hand experience at Gaylord Opryland’s “A Country Christmas” (one of our family’s favorite holiday traditions since moving to Nashville!).

opryland country christmas cone kids

You’ll get to see ALL that Gaylord Opryland has to offer for Christmas this year, including over 17 hours of family activities.

I’m also sharing ICE ticket deals for their premier winter attraction at the Gaylord Opryland Events Center.


Free Opryland Parking

Parking at Opryland is not cheap. Instead, I suggest parking at the far end of the Opry Mills parking lot. This will put you right by Pinetop and the events center where some of the other Opryland Christmas activities will be.

The free lighting ceremony takes place nightly just outside the Magnolia Lobby. If you want free Opryland parking, you can eat at one of Opryland’s sit-down restaurants and get your parking validated.

What is your favorite part about Gaylord Opryland Resort during the Christmas season?

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Brenda Nicol November 20, 2022 - 7:24 am

We will visiting my son after Thanksgiving and would love to see your Christmas lights! Problem is my husband has 2 bad knees, bad hip and ankle replacement and is in pain. He can walk very short distances but should have a wheelchair for long distances. Do you offer a free wheelchair for handicap? We are flying and unable to bring his big scooter. Please advise above and parking for handicap. Thank you so much. Looking forward to seeing your beautiful display. I think we are visiting Your Christmas display on Thursday after Thanksgiving. Thank for all of your info and help. Brenda

Sami November 20, 2022 - 10:22 pm

I’m excited you’ll be able to visit the Opryland Christmas lights while visiting your son! Just to be clear, I’m not employed by Gaylord Opryland Resort, so this is just based on my experience, but to my knowledge, the hotel does not have free wheelchairs available. I will see what further information I can find out for you.

Sami November 22, 2022 - 4:55 pm

Here is what I heard back from a resort representative:

Everyone is welcome every day before 2pm but on select peak dates, there will be a requirement of overnight or event reservations for guaranteed resort access after 2pm. Learn more at

Wheelchair rentals must be reserved in advance thru our provider:

michelle November 18, 2014 - 10:03 am

Hey Sami,
We are coming in next week for the state Beta Convention. My middle school students would love to do the ICE exhibit. Do you have any discount codes besides the ones offered on their website? I’ve noticed some of the other Gaylord hotels are offering living social deals but I haven’t seen any for Nashville. Just wondered if you have any.

sami November 21, 2014 - 10:00 pm

I’m looking for some as we speak, Michelle!

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