Last week the Ogre and I bundled up and buckled on our holiday cheer at Christmas Town Busch Gardens in Williamsburg. I had never seen so many lit Christmas trees in my life, and o, thy candles did shine so brightly! The pretty lights, swell carols sung in several languages, and delightful scents wafting through the air would have made even the grumpiest Scrooge smile.
This is only the second year Busch Gardens has transformed their amusement park into a magical winter wonderland. I hope they keep the tradition for years to come because it'd afford me the greatest glee to return. Bounce tickets with an online discount were only $48 for 3 consecutive days, and they included free parking and access to Colonial Williamsburg, which was also beautiful to explore.
We were greeted by this giant snowman after we made our way through the entrance and a forest of blue lights. It's also where we discovered the first chiminea, thanks be to Noel. Fluttering toward the kerosene heaters planted throughout the Gardens worked even better at keeping warm than having to constantly hummingbird dive into buildings.
This 50 foot tree and its entourage are part of the spectacular lightshow, O Tannenbaum, in Oktoberfest, Germany. I gazed at the lights enthusiastically dancing in tune to a musical score, then warmed up in the immense Das Festhaus festival hall by sipping on a seasonal ale and watching the Deck the Halls show, complete with singers, dancers, and an orchestra on a moving stage.
Out of the many holiday shopping opportunities, the Toys O' the Leprechaun in Ireland was my favorite store, inside and out. I enjoyed browsing through the neighboring Emerald Isle shop, as well. And of course, we had to relax in Grogan's Pub with an Irish Coffee and an After Dinner Mint Hot Chocolate before seeing the best show in the park, Rejoice. Its modern twist to Gregorian music produced by a full orchestra and chorus replaced my cold goosebumps with awestruck shivers!
There's only splendor for the sight, right? This is a clearing on a walkway between countries. It was almost spooky at night in dimly lit parts of Busch Gardens, when there were no other souls around and the surrounding rides were quietly cloaked in darkness. I could see the outlines of roller coasters in the moonlight and they looked like sleeping dinosaurs.
On the third day, we arrived just as the gates opened and were able to see the park in the rather cloudy daylight. It's been years since I've voyaged around Busch Gardens during the warmer seasons when all the rides are open, so I'm not sure what attraction this baby dragon belongs to - but isn't he cute?! He resides beside one of the sky-high bucket stations, which they deemed the Flight of Lights. It was quite cold being suspended in a cart 80 feet above the glittering grounds, but wow, was the view worth it. My camera just couldn't capture that breathtaking feeling, so if you want to experience it, you'll have to sled on over to Christmas Town yourself!
Merry Christmas! Hope your lives are filled with love, laughter and magic this holiday week and ever after.