Visiting This NC Town Is Like Stepping Into A Hallmark Christmas Movie!

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When you think of a Hallmark Christmas movie, what elements come to mind? In this issue of the Carolina Traveler weekly newsletter, we're highlighting Thomasville, NC as our holiday place to stay in 2023. A month in Chair City will have you feeling like you relocated to a snowglobe!

We've rounded up our recommendations for the best holiday performances, events, and even fitness options! Don't worry — the only injury you risk from participation is a bruised ego!

For our VIP subscribers, we have FREE TICKETS to the Christmas Carousel Market at the NC State Fairgrounds this weekend. Who needs to suffer the horrors of Black Friday masses and supply chain disruptions when you can find a gift for every person on your list in one location?!

The holiday 2023 content has just begun. Also, next week is one of the best times of the year to become a Carolina Traveler subscriber — keep reading for more details on Cyber Monday discounts!

Mechanical Christmas elves in a storage room.

Admire lifelike mechanical elves — designed by Lou Nasti — as they set about their toy-making in Thomasville shop window displays.

Make This Hallmark Christmas Movie Town Your Next Holiday Destination

An idyllic main street flanked by coffee shops, whimsical boutiques, and local art galleries — check.
Persistently cheerful neighbors sharing giggles and gossip at every corner — check.
The electric buzz in the wintry air that signals the promise of something exciting unexpected, exciting, and dare we say, magical — when it comes to making merry in the Carolinas, Thomasville has all their holiday bases covered.

We're featuring Thomasville, NC as our holiday place to stay in the Carolinas this year. From Thanksgiving to Christmas, locals and visitors can participate in the following festive events:

  • The 46th Annual Craft Fair
  • Light Up The Holidays
  • Thomasville Christmas Parade
  • Journey to Bethlehem
  • Chair City Christmas

Continue reading to learn more about how visiting Thomasville during the holidays is like stepping inside of a real-life Hallmark Christmas movie!

Christmas Carousel Holiday Market advertisement

There's a special gift for every special person on your list at this Raleigh holiday craft market.

Claim Your Free Tickets To The Christmas Carousel Holiday Market In Raleigh, NC

What if you could take care of all of your Christmas gift shopping in one place?

No spending hours online getting lost in Amazon tabs, paying for shipping, or haggling with customer service when items inevitably arrive broken or missing pieces…

We're here to tell you that such a magical place does exist, and not just in Hallmark Christmas movies! Once you've completed digesting your Thanksgiving meal, head over to Raleigh's ultimate Christmas extravaganza, the unmissable Christmas Carousel Market! Even if you don't have an official gift list, you're bound to feel inspired by the more than 250 exhibitors and their unique creations. Held in the spacious Jim Graham Building at the NC State Fairgrounds, you'll feel like you stepped into a 90,000 sq. ft. winter wonderland of delicious treats, blooming florals, dazzling decor, and more!

Carolina Traveler VIPs can avoid the Black Friday masses and claim their free tickets to the Christmas Carousel Market in Raleigh, NC. Just email Susie, our Ambassador of Fun, and she'll get you into the market!

Four participants smiling after a holiday fun run

Ugly sweater fun runs — active and memorable fun for the entire family!

Challenge Your Family To Some Holiday Fitness Hi-jinks!

Here in the Carolinas, the winter weather is as fierce as Santa's jolly chuckle… there might not be snow for dashing through like there is in most Hallmark Christmas movies, but fear not! We have a sleigh-load of delightful activities to make your Christmas sparkle with joy and keep those elf bellies jiggling in the merriest way!

Don't worry, we're not making any recommendations for polar bear plunges, marathon ice fishing tournaments, or arctic obstacle courses. Our suggestions are exciting enough to get that heartbeat going but not so strenuous that you'll tear a muscle or humiliate yourself in front of the in-laws:

🥏Embrace the challenge of precision in our whimsical disc golf tournament!
🏆Dive into the spirited competition of the Holiday Olympics!
🏃‍♀️Take a leisurely 5K stroll through a vineyard, savoring scenic views and some celebratory sips!

Learn more about how to “get your Santa sweat on” for the holidays.

23% off coupon for Cyber Monday at Carolina Traveler

Enjoy our best rates of the year, this cyber Monday 11/27/2024.

NC Holiday Flotilla in Wilmington

Whether you're participating in the boat parade or watching in amazement from the shore, the NC Holiday Flotilla is a holiday bucket list item in the Carolinas.

The NC Holiday Flotilla — If Christmas And The Fourth Of July Had A Baby…

Take the wonder, bright lights, and sense of fellowship of a Hallmark Christmas movie, then combine it with majestic pyrotechnics, booming beloved music, and Carolina cuisine — that's a recipe for an epic holiday parade, don't you think?

2023 marks the 40th year that NC coastal residents and visitors from all over the Carolinas will gather to celebrate the NC Holiday Flotilla in Wilmington, NC. The schedule of events runs from Friday, November 24 to Sunday, November 26, and includes the following highlights:

  • Kick-off party featuring the Band of Oz
  • Food, arts, and crafts vendors in the park
  • Car Show and awards
  • Boat parade and fireworks
  • Captain's breakfast and boat parade winners
Trans-Siberian Orchestra on stage with pink lights

In addition to powerful symphonic rock and holiday ballads, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra sets the standard for lighting effects!

Rock The Night Away With Outstanding Holiday Performances

As the holiday season draws near, the Carolinas come alive with a symphony of entertainment that promises to enchant and amuse. From the rhythmic beats of Celtic step-dancing to the side-splitting humor of comedic storytelling and the elegant strains of a candlelit orchestra to the irreverent charm of musical theater, the region offers an array of Christmas performances sure to delight all. 

Older man with a Santa hat playing the saxophone outside.

Anderson Christmas Lights features a range of entertainment, including County Line Jazz Ensemble, the Clemson Steel Drum Band, Bluegrass and Company, and Ansley Burns of America's Got Talent.

Anderson Christmas Lights: Perfect For Families, First Dates, And Giving Back!

For 30 years, the Anderson Christmas Lights nonprofit has been raising funds for local charities. Voted the best place to take a date on Christmas, the Anderson Christmas Lights brings together all of Carolinians' favorite holiday elements for a worthwhile cause. Your childhood will return when you step into this magical Christmas Village, featuring chainsaw woodcarving artists, story-telling princesses, and local musical talent.

In addition to Santa and Mrs. Claus, you can nosh on hot cocoa, coffee, fresh baked cookies, cakes, and fresh-popped kettle corn — all found in the Christmas village. Gates are open from Thanksgiving to Christmas, 5:30 to 10 PM nightly, with theme nights/weeks as follows:

  • 11/23: Opening Night
  • 11/27-12/01: Princess Week
  • 12/04-09: Clemson Week
  • 12/11-16: Superhero Week
  • 12/17: Chic Fil-A Night
people skating around a Christmas tree at night -- a must-do activity in a Hallmark Christmas movie

There's holiday fun to be found in every corner of NC and SC this year!

Holiday 2023 Events

We’ve made our list – and checked it twice – of the best Christmas events in North Carolina and South Carolina. From an eye-popping fireworks exhibition at a NASCAR speedway to a multi-course variety show and wine tasting, these 2023 holiday events will keep you marinated in merriment throughout the holiday season! One of the best parts of living in North Carolina and South Carolina during the holidays are the abundance of towns that cultivate the hopeful feel of a real-life Hallmark Christmas movie. 

Looking for more information on holiday things in to do in North Carolina and South Carolina? From the best snow tubing recommendations in North Carolina to where to find dog-friendly beaches in the Palmetto State, join our Carolina Traveler Facebook group and become a subscriber to the Carolina Traveler magazine!

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