Celebrating Christmas in Bend Oregon is a magical experience. Each year the city hosts a variety of events to participate in and features incredible activities that Central Oregon is known for. If you are looking for your next Christmas hideaway, look no further than Bend!
Explore Old Mill District
Each year for the holiday season the Old Mill District transforms into a magical holiday wonderland full of holiday scents, lights and decorations, and carolers. Take your children for a free carriage ride from local providers Cowboy Carriage for a unique experience. There will be plenty of picture-perfect moments and the kids will even have a chance to meet Santa! Santa and his merry little elves will have plenty of activities for all the kids, with Christmas carol sing-alongs and reading holiday-themed books. And of course, there will be plenty of pictures with Santa and his elves. Have the kids bring their letters to Santa to the Old Mill District where they can drop them off in special North Pole mailboxes at the south end of the district, and in SantaLand Plaza at the north end.
Of course, a trip to the Old Mill District would not be complete without visiting the incredible selection of stores where you can get all of your last-minute holiday shopping done. Shop ‘til you drop, enjoy a delicious meal, or just people watch, all while enjoying the festive sounds of Roving Carolers. Costumed local choir groups wander the district, crooning and harmonizing holiday classics.
Find All of the Christmas Lights
While some cities have particular neighborhoods that go crazy with Christmas lights, Bend does the exact opposite. Instead of fighting traffic to see one part of the city that everyone else is also trying to visit, take a relaxing drive around Bend. Many locals put up enjoyable sets of lights in every part of town. This is a great way to get a self-guided tour of Bend! Start your holiday light tour at pretty Drake Park where the Community Christmas Tree will be shining and twinkling near The Commons.
The Deschutes County Fairgrounds will be hosting the Holiday Light Experience through January 1st. This festive light show has over 100,000 square feet of bright, colorful holiday lights to enjoy as you walk through, ending the night at Santa’s Village.
And no Christmas in Bend would be complete without watching the Tumalo Creek Paddle Parade on the Deschutes River. Locals (and guests) not only dress themselves up in fun holiday attire, but they decorate their kayaks and canoes in twinkling lights, garlands and more. You can watch comfortably from one of the restaurants in the Old Mill District or a bench along the river, or dress up and grab you canoe or kayak and join in the fun! If you do decide to join in the festivities, make sure you secure your decorations tightly to your kayak or canoe so they don’t go floating down the river without you. (Tinsel and small ornaments look yummy to animals, fish and birds, but can be deadly.) Buy an inflatable Santa or Grinch when you’re downtown shopping for your float on the river! Now that’s a great Christmas memory!
Take a Snow Shoe Tour
You will find there is plenty of snow falling during your Christmas in Bend Oregon. Explore the surrounding area with an exciting snowshoe tour. Some of the best areas to do just that are at Wanoga Sno-Park and Dutchman Flat, which feature plenty of space to explore. Local shops offer all the gear you need. If you are looking for a professionally-guided tour, let the pros at Wanderlust Tours help you out.
Play in the Snow
Get out and enjoy the snow! Head to Mt. Bachelor (just a little over 20 miles from Bend) or Hoodoo Ski Area (a little farther out, but the only area resort that offers night skiing), for cross country and Nordic skiing fun, snowboarding and snowshoeing. It’s why most people come to Bend – to ski and enjoy fun in the snow. Tired of skiing? Have fun snow tubing, take a horse-drawn sleigh ride, or treat your family to a dog sled adventure.
A Swingin’ Tower Christmas in Bend Oregon
Perhaps the most exciting Christmas event in Bend is the annual Swingin’ Tower Christmas Show put on by Tower Theatre. Enjoy an all-ages event featuring stories, songs, and dances all centered around Santa. A 14-piece band is on hand to keep the tunes lively. Typically, there are four performances put on around Christmas, giving you plenty of opportunities to enjoy this unique experience.
Your Christmas Story
With so much to do in Bend, there has never been a better time to visit than during the next holiday season. Enjoy these incredible activities and more when you stay nearby in one of our premier vacation rentals. Relax with our luxury amenities that will make your Christmas in Bend Oregon one to remember. Call today and see what we have to offer for your next Christmas in Bend!