Are you looking for the ultimate guide to doing Hersheypark Christmas Candylane for the first time?
Look no further, I have everything you need to know and more!
Theme parks are such a fun way to spend time with your loved ones and celebrate the holiday season.
Hersheypark is located in Hershey, Pennsylvania and up north during the fall and winter seasons, it can get extremely cold because it is located so closely to the mountain ranges.
But personally, I find that only adds to the holiday cheer vibe.
As Hersheypark continues to grow more and more in popularity amongst theme park fans, one may ask how they go about celebrating the holidays.
Today, I will be chatting about Hersheypark Christmas Candylane and what is included with it!
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Celebrating the Holidays at Hersheypark In a Glance:
- Christmas at Hersheypark kicks off on November 10th 2023 and goes until January 1, 2024
- Enjoy all of the holiday fun such as TREEville At The Boardwalk
- Be sure to wear some festive and holiday-themed clothing to get the best Hersheypark Christmas photos while you’re here
- Don’t forget to check out the incredible food and entertainment on property
- Drive through 2 miles of wooded trails, enjoy nearly 600 illuminated, animated displays for Hershey Sweet Lights
- Say hi to Santa Claus!
Keep reading to get a full guide on the best way to explore this theme park holiday experience like a pro!
What is Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
Hersheypark Christmas Candylane is the park’s annual Christmas celebration event that runs yearly from mid-November to January 1st.
This year you can experience it from November 10, 2023 to January 1, 2024.
Hersheypark Christmas Candylane is free with park admission and features a ton of family friendly activities including:
- Select rides and attractions
- Meet and greet characters
- Specialty food, drinks and treats
- Festive entertainment
Do keep in mind that certain aspects of this holiday event requires an additional fee such as meeting Santa Claus in the park for a photo, Breakfast with Santa or the arcade games throughout the park.
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What time does Hersheypark open for Christmas Candylane?
Hersheypark Christmas Candylane park hours may vary depending on the day. Generally, you will find that the park will be open between 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
You can get the full schedule of the park hours can here for the day you wish to visit.
Is Hersheypark Open for Christmas Day?
Hersheypark and all associated events will be closed on Christmas Day. The only exception is the Hershey Sweet Lights which is a separate purchase from the park as a whole.
The hours for Hershey Sweet Lights are from 5 p.m to 9 p.m.
How much does Hersheypark Christmas Candyland Cost?
You will need a general admission Hersheypark ticket to experience Christmas Candylane, with the exception of the Hershey Sweet Lights that requires a separate charge that I will dive into later on in this holiday guide.
You can easily catch great offers and deals on tickets if you sign up for their email list or look early enough.
Dated tickets start at $54.99 and any day 1-day tickets start at $74.99.
Ticket admission to Hersheypark includes all day access to the park and the attached Hershey ZooAmerica that features a special entrance within the park itself.
What rides are open during Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
As part of the experience, select rides and attractions will be available for guests to experience. Some may even have a holiday overlay especially for the Christmas Candylane event.
The following attractions will be available for guests due Hersheypark Christmas Candylane, but are subject to change:
- Balloon Flite
- Cocoa Cruiser
- Dizzy Drums
- Dry Gulch Railroad
- Fender Bender
- Ferris Wheel
- Frog Hopper
- Frontier Flyers
- Granny Bugs (Closes at 6 p.m. daily)
- Helicopters Presented by Penn State Health
- Hershey Triple Tower
- Jolly Rancher Remix
- Kissing Tower
- Laff Trak
- Livery Stables
- Mini Himalaya
- Mini Pirate
- The Mini Scrambler
- Minty Bees
- Misfit Bugs
- Mix’d Flavored By Jolly Rancher
- Monorail (Closes at 5 p.m.)
- Music Express (Closes at 5 p.m.)
- Pony Parade
- Red Baron
- Reese’s Cupfusion
- Space Age
- Starship America
- Sweet Swing (Closes at 5 p.m.)
- Sweet Thing
- The Claw
- Tea Cups (Closes at 5 p.m.)
- The Howler
- Tilt a Whirl
- Traffic Jam
- Twin Turnpike Classic Cars and Speedway
- Wave Swinger
- Wild Mouse
- Wildcat’s Revenge
You will find that it’s mostly family-friendly attractions and rides that will be open with the exception of a few coasters and indoor attractions.
For more details on what rides may be best for you, check out our guide here.
Will Fast Track Be available to buy and use for rides during Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
You’ll be happy to know that Fast Track is available for purchase if you feel its needed but usually wait times are decent during this time of the year.
Does Hersheypark Christmas Candylane have light displays?
Guests who stay past 5 p.m. can get to experience the joyous and twinkling holiday lights that shimmer and shine throughout the park.
Hersheypark decks their halls with over 5 million lights, that especially look enchanting over their spring creek area.
A favorite of visitors is the Christmas light show, “NOEL.” The show boasts over 250,000 of their lights dancing along to beloved holiday tunes.
Right nearby is the huge Kissmas tree display, topped with a classic Hershey’s Kiss. The famous Hershey fountain is also lit up for the occasion.
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Are you able to meet characters during Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
Yes! Inside the Music Box Theatre, you can find a festive display with falling snow and favorite Hershey character awaiting to give you the warmest hugs and take a photo with you!
You won’t know which character it will be until you enter but generally you can find Kit Kat, Hershey bar, Hershey Kiss and Reeses ready to greet you.
They will be dressed up in special holiday outfits for the occasion.
Will the Boardwalk at Hersheypark be open for Christmas Candylane?
While the Boardwalk, Hersheypark’s water park, is closed for the season, it is used as the home for TREEville!
What is TREEville at Hersheypark Christmas Candylane and when will it open?
TREEville at Boardwalk starts on December 1st and runs for the remainder of the christmas candylane season.
You’ll be able to walk the trail and gaze at the elaborately decorated themed Christmas trees.
Here you can take a sweet stroll and follow along the stories of the sweetest place on earth.
Will there be Specialty Merchandise for Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
Yes! A visit to the Christmas shop is a must but can be done year round. However, you can stop at Candylane Emporium right nearby Wildcat’s Revenge or Hersheypark Supply Co at the front entrance of the park.
Here you can find spirit jerseys, sweaters, hoodie, tee shirts, candles, plush toys, postcards and so much more!
However, if you are looking for specialty holiday chocolates and merchandise, some of which can only be found in certain countries or at the park, just take a brief stroll up the hill to Hershey’s Chocolate World or Chocolatier Restaurant.
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Breakfast with Santa Claus at Hersheypark
A special treat for visitors is the ability to meet Santa clause at the park entrance or even have breakfast with him. Santa can be met anytime before December 24th.
Do I need a reservation to have breakfast with Santa at Hersheypark Christmas Candylane?
Reservations are required and it should be noted that the event isn’t available on Fridays with the exception of Friday, November 24 and Friday, December 22.
How much does Breakfast with Santa cost at Christmas Candylane?
You can enjoy a delicious breakfast buffet with hints of chocolate, kids’ activities, and lots of holiday family fun. Adults are $34.95 and children (3-11) are $22.95 with the exception of children 2 and under being free.
Alcohol is not available until 9 a.m. on Sundays and it runs on weekends November 24 – December 24, 2023 from 8 to 10 a.m.
What comes with the holiday buffet at Hersheypark?
The buffet includes the following:
- Fresh Fruit Salad (Cantaloupe, Honeydew, Pineapple, Grapes and Watermelon)
- Assorted Yogurts
- Breakfast Pastries
- White and Multigrain Bread with Whipper and Chocolate Butter and Jelly
- Baked Egg Strata with Baby Spinach, Tomato, Red Onion, White Cheddar, Cuban Bread
- Scrambled Eggs
- Hash Browns
- Applewood Smoked Bacon
- Mini Buttermilk Pancakes with Assorted Toppings: Whipped Cream, Mini Hershey Kisses, Reese’s Pieces, Sprinkles, Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
- French Toast Sticks with Cinnamon Sugar
- Oatmeal with Brown Sugar, Toasted Walnuts, Cocoa Dusted Almonds options
- Assorted Cereal with Reeses Puffs & Corn Flakes
Where is Breakfast with Santa Located at Hersheypark?
Breakfast with Santa is located at the Chocolatier Restaurant inside Hersheypark Supply Co. on the second floor. It is accessible via stairs and elevator.
You can get an idea of what to expect for food and atmosphere from our review here.
Where can I meet Santa’s Reindeer at Christmas Candylane?
A Hersheypark tradition is to visit Santa’s Reindeer stables. You can interact, meet and take photos with all 9 of Santa’s reindeer including Rudolph and learn all about the care that goes into the animals.
You will find Santa’s stables towards the back of the park right next door to Fahrenheit. However, you are not allowed to touch the animals or go into their pens.
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2023 Holiday Food at Hersheypark for Christmas Candylane
There are a wide variety of options that will serve up special options including Simply Chocolate, where you can experience Hershey’s famous hot chocolate or King size shakes.
There is the overlook food court, where you can experience the Baked Potato Bar.
Check out Kissing Tower Catering for their loaded fries and try their Philly Cheesesteak specialty if it’s available.
In Hersheypark Supply Co., the bakery is always serves up some holiday themed treats at an affordable cost.
7 Best Hersheypark Christmas Snacks and Food You Must Try This Year!
- Reese’s Hot Chocolate: Peanut butter hot chocolate topped with chocolate whipped cream, Reese’s Pieces Candy and a peanut butter blossom cookie (Location: Simply Chocolate)
- Caramel Apple Pie King Size Shake: An apple flavored shake with two chocolate dipped pretzels with toffee and cinnamon sugar, topped with an apple filling cookie (Location: Simply Chocolate)
- Jingle Juice: Sour Green Apple with Blue Raspberry (Location: 1906 Brews)
- Loaded Baked Potato Bar (Location: Overlook Food Court)
- Turkey Gobbler Pizza: A mashed potato-based pizza slice topped with cheese, turkey, and corn, served with a side of gravy and cranberry sauce (Location: Overlook Food Court)
- Snickerdoodle Ice Cream Sandwich: Gingerbread snickerdoodle ice cream sealed between two warm snickerdoodle cookies (Location: Milton’s Ice Cream Parlor)
- Holiday Hot Dog: A footlong hot dog with a cranberry sriracha spread, topped with stuffing, turkey and gravy (Location: Berks)
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What is the Hershey Sweet Lights?
The Hershey Sweet Lights display allows you to drive your car through 2 miles of wooded trails, enjoy nearly 600 illuminated, animated displays and listen to a custom-made holiday radio station on your drive.
You will need to download the free iHeartRadio App, search for the specific station, Hershey Sweet Lights®, and enjoy the lights and music!
A car with up to 8 people will cost $24.95 and a van with 8-15 people will cost $50.15. This event is NOT included with your Hersheypark ticket admission.
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Top 5 Tips for First-Timers Going to Hersheypark Christmas Candylane
Now that you know what to expect for Christmastime at Hersheypark, let’s go through the best tips for making your trip AMAZING!
1. Buy your tickets in advance.
This will save you money and time and you will almost always get a great deal, especially if you are traveling with a large party.
2. If you are a solo traveler, it is worth it to head over in the late afternoon.
This is because there won’t be many coasters running during the Christmas Candyland event.
The only ones that are officially running will be Laff Trak, Wildcat’s Revenge and Candymonium, which is subject to change and weather.
3. Check for when the sun will set on the day of your visit.
Do this especially if you plan on being there mainly to see the light displays.
The lights are turned on at 5 p.m. but to get the full experience, walk around the hollow area on the bridges to see the NOEL show and lights at their prettiest.
4. Bundle up!
If you think you have on enough clothing, add one more layer.
Hershey, Pennsylvania, especially during the fall and winter, can get as low as 30 degrees at night, which is when most guests are visiting to see the lights display.
If you aren’t used to that weather, make sure to wear plenty of layers, gloves, hats, etc. to stay warm.
I recommend glove warmers to put inside your gloves and shoes.
5. Stop by Hershey Chocolate World on your way out or before going into Hersheypark.
While not technically part of Christmas Candylane, they have their own festive activities, specialty food, drinks and treats, character and photo-ops, including the Grinch, and so much more!
My Final Thoughts on Hersheypark Christmas Candylane
While you can visit any theme park to make memories with, the ones at Hersheypark will certainly be the sweetest!
Here you can walk amongst sparkling, glimmering lights, listen and dance to holiday tunes with loved ones, enjoy some rides and yummy treats and so much more!
My one tip is to try the famous Hershey’s hot cocoa and if you are up for it, try one of their seasonal King Size Milkshakes, which can be found at the Simply Chocolate stand.
It is a must have when visiting hersheypark and can be shared.
Have you visited the sweetest place on earth yet? Share your memories with us in our Facebook Group!
Until next time, Happy Park Hopping Hipsters!
About the Author
Victoria is a professional solo traveler here to make your solo trips as stress free AND enjoyable as possible for you.
She has over 5 years of Disney and Non-Disney travel experience and was featured by POPSUGAR as one of the Top 50 Black Disney Creators you should follow.
She is a Proud Native to Baltimore, Md but always will call Disney World home. You can find her at Disney Tea with V.