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December 2022

A Very Merry Massachusetts

December is a joyous month in Massachusetts, a season when families and friends gather, and when visitors are warmly welcomed! Enjoy our holiday light displays, Christmas trees in town squares, and music and dancing in concert halls. Sample our cuisine in a local café, restaurant or hotel, and don’t forget about our winter activities, including ice skating, skiing and outdoor hikes.

Massachusetts is the perfect place to go Christmas shopping, and thanks for supporting our MyLocalMA initiative which promotes family-owned stores, Main Streets retailers and small businesses in rural areas.

Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones and thank you for visiting Massachusetts. You can find more information at

Photo: Courtesy of the Franklin County Festival of Trees

Featured Region: Franklin County

Last chance to visit these Historic Deerfield Exhibits, on display through December 31!

Celebrating the Fiber Arts: The Helen Geier Flynt Textile Gallery - The Helen Geier Flynt Textile Gallery showcases Historic Deerfield's important collection of fashion, needlework, and domestic textiles. Considered one of the finest collections in America, it contains items dating from the late 17th century through the mid-20th century.

Engraved Powder Horns from the French and Indian War and the American Revolution: The William H. Guthman Collection - One of the finest assemblages of this indigenous and unique American art form ever presented are on exhibit.

Into the Woods: Crafting Early American Furniture - Explore a dazzling array of masterworks by famous American cabinetmakers, including Duncan Phyfe and Honoré Lannuier, Samuel McIntire, John and Thomas Seymour, and John Townsend.

Find more information on Franklin County.

Photo credit: Kyle Klein

Greater Boston

There's nothing quite like the holiday season in Boston! From holiday markets and igloo dining to outdoor ice-skating rinks and annual performances, the Greater Boston area truly is a magical place this holiday season. Whether you prefer the classics or a modern spin on your favorite holiday performance, or perhaps the excitement of post-season college football at Fenway park and a citywide New Year's Eve celebration, you'll discover a full lineup of seasonal acts and festive fun at

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Cape Cod

Celebrate Christmas on Cape Cod and create lifelong memories that will be passed down for generations. Here, by the sea, you’ll recapture the essence of the holiday season. Stay in a cozy B&B, book a relaxing spa day, dine fireside, and bundle up for a brisk walk on the seashore. Savor such quintessential holiday experiences as the illuminated Pilgrim Monument, festively decorated village centers, and village strolls. A vibrant arts community and picturesque Main Streets offer a boatload of unique treasures and hand-crafted items for holiday shopping! Plan your holiday getaway at

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Western Mass

What better time to start a new tradition than the holiday season? And what better place to do it than Western Mass? You’ll find one-of-a-kind holiday attractions, great shopping and delicious dining. Start your weekend with Bright Nights at Forest Park, New England's single most popular holiday destination and largest holiday lighting display, featuring Toy Land, Seuss Land and miles of themed holiday scenes. Click here for dates and times. 

Find more information on Western Mass.

Hampshire County

December in Hampshire County is a time for traditions! Get started with the annual Lighting of the Merry Maple in Amherst or a Holiday Stroll in South Hadley. Then head to the Academy of Music in Northampton for the Pioneer Valley Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker – or a magical Storytime with Clara. Still have some shopping to do? Pop into Cottage Street Open Studios for a handmade treasure. Put a bow on 2022 with fireworks and over 50 live performances during the family-friendly celebration at First Night Northampton!

Find more information on Hampshire County.

North Central Mass

Make your season bright with a dazzling tour of North Central Massachusetts! See the Lancaster Celebration of Lights featuring more than a million LED lights, the “Light Fight” tours in Hubbardston and Pepperell, and stunning display at the New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill. Leominster really shines, too, with its Leominster Lights Tour, Christmas on Tolman array, and music-enhanced exhibition at Sholan Farms, overlooking the sparkling city. It’s time to hop in the car and see the lights!

Find more information on North Central Mass.

Martha's Vineyard

December Vineyard visitors will delight in a Very Vineyard Holiday! Each weekend there is something happening to celebrate the magic of the season: ’Tis the Season, December 2-4; Christmas in Edgartown, December 9-11; and additional events Island-wide all month long. December holidays bring together amazing gifts of living on (or dreaming of) Martha’s Vineyard — a winter wonderland shared by Islanders and pilgrims who can't stay away. Stay, dine, shop, play, hike, bike and return often! Happy Holidays!


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Mohawk Trail Region

There is no better way to enjoy the winter and the Mohawk Trail Region than heading outside to play in the freshly fallen snow, with hundreds of acres of wide-open spaces and plenty of room to cross-country and downhill ski, snowboard, snowshoe, tubing, fat tire biking, ice skating, hike one of the many tree cover trail or the outdoor art trails. Great outdoors promotes a socially distancing experience: Project Snowshoe, Berkshire East Mountain Resort and Mohawk Trail State Forest-DCR.

Find more information on the Mohawk Trail Region.


Even if Christmas is not your thing, don’t miss the 2nd Annual Jack's Abby German Christmas Market! A fun, FREE, welcoming event for all with 14 different amazing local vendors each weekend, tumble Bus for kids, live music, December 10, 11, 17, 18. Then, visit The Verve hotel in Natick, bring the kids (including a Sensory Friendly option) for Breakfast with Santa on Sunday, December 18, followed by a Hanukkah Party on Monday, December 19.

Find more information on MetroWest.

Photo credit: Emily Elisabeth Photography


One word for Nantucket’s December — magical! Nantucket bursts with holiday cheer during the 48th Annual Christmas Stroll Weekend (December 2-4)! The Whaling Museum’s annual Festival of Trees is dazzling (December 2-31). Why not make it a weekend getaway with an inn/hotel/B&B stay? Plenty of restaurants and shops are eager to welcome visitors! Naturally, Nantucket’s dreamy beaches, conservation and recreation spaces are ready to welcome visitors, too! Warm wishes this holiday season from the faraway island of Nantucket.

Find more information on Nantucket Island.

Photo credit: Destination Salem

North of Boston

Salem Holiday Happenings, November 25–December 31, features activities for the whole family, including traditional favorites such as Santa’s arrival at the Hawthorne Hotel, Christmas in Salem House Tours, and the return of Winter Walk on Pickering Wharf, and so much more. Grab a hot cocoa or warm apple cider and marvel at the magnificent Winter Lights on Cape Ann, kicking off on Small Business Saturday, 11/26 and running through New Year’s Day. This year, you have the option to walk around and explore while you shop, or enjoy the full 100+ light displays with a DIY driving tour. 

Find more information on North of Boston.

Plymouth County

With its rich history, cozy inns and amazing dining scene, Plymouth County offers the perfect getaway this December! The holidays and history come together with “A Christmas Carol” at the Hedge House on the Plymouth Waterfront. Or grab the kids and head to Edaville Family Theme Park in Carver! With steam train rides, shopping and amusement rides, Edaville’s Christmas Festival of Lights has fun for all ages. Full calendar on the See Plymouth mobile app and website.

Find more information on Plymouth County.

Southeastern Mass

With a crazy year leaving us feeling trapped, we could all use an escape. Southeastern Massachusetts is so close to home you’ll be here by noon. What you won’t be is looking at the same four walls, because you’ll be too busy taking a stroll by the ocean, finding that art you’ve been needing & having the freshest seafood possible...most importantly making memories that will help you escape.

Find more information on Southeastern Mass.

The Berkshires

Come ski the Berkshires, where the snow is fresh and the slopes offer a challenge for every ability level! Ski and snowboard down your choice of trails at Jiminy Peak, Catamount, Bousquet, and Butternut - all are family friendly with multiple trails, lifts, classes, and rentals. Catch some hot cocoa and head back out! Cross country ski at Notchview, Berkshire East, Hilltop Orchards, and Maple Corner Farm! Winter fun with family and friends - and so much more - in the Berkshires!  

Find more information on The Berkshires.

Greater Merrimack Valley

Join the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and Conductor Keith Lockhart for their sparkling and beloved Holiday Pops concert on Sunday, December 18 at Lowell Auditorium!. Capturing the magic of the Christmas season and the winter charms of New England, the Boston Pops will perform their signature Sleigh Ride, as well as other Holiday classics, and new arrangements of seasonal favorites. Santa Claus himself will make a guest appearance during the concert's finale, followed by the traditional Boston Pops Holiday Sing-a-long, to bring this special performance to a close. 2:30 p.m. show. Buy tickets here!

Find more information on Greater Merrimack Valley.

Central Massachusetts

Central Massachusetts transforms into a holiday haven, as the Festival of Lights brightens Worcester Common and Christmas by Candlelight takes Old Sturbridge Village, then several shows grace the stage, from the Holiday Pops Concert to A Christmas Carol. Stroll through a Christmas Bazaar for gift ideas, then keep the spirit of giving alive with the Loyal to Local Gift Guide. All month long, the Worcester Wonderland Passport guides you through holiday experiences at spirited businesses.

Find more information on Central Massachusetts.

Regional Tourism Councils

The Berkshires  Cape Cod  Central Massachusetts  Franklin County 

Greater Boston  Greater Merrimack Valley  Hampshire County  North Central Mass 

Martha's Vineyard  MetroWest  Mohawk Trail  Nantucket Island  North of Boston 

Plymouth County  Southeastern Mass  Western Mass


Funded by the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism