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If you’re looking for a city escape during the holidays, consider taking a weekend getaway to the Laurel Highlands. The Laural Highlands is a beautiful part of Pennsylvania located in the southwestern region of the state. The Laurel Highlands is full of diverse activities including historic sites, museums, craft breweries and wineries, and outdoor spaces.
The winter and holiday season is a fun time in the Laurel Highlands; the rolling hills of Laurel Mountains become blanketed in snow, local communities host seasonal events, and there is joy in the atmosphere! During the winter and holidays, the Laurel Highlands comes alive with activities including festivals, themed historic tours, and winter sports.
Being from the Laurel Highlands ourselves, we have come to know and love many of the local winter and holiday events and activities hosted in the Laurel Highlands. Here is our local’s guide to celebrating winter and the holidays in the Laurel Highlands!
Top Things to Do this Winter in the Laurel Highlands
Overly’s Country Christmas
Overly’s Country Christmas was our favorite thing to do every holiday season. This beautiful Christmas light show has been dazzling visitors since the 1950s. Every year when we were little, we would visit Overley’s and enjoy fresh-baked cookies while gazing at the Christmas lights and strolling around the Christmas Village. Overly’s Country Christmas is a must-do family-friendly activity in the Laurel Highlands!
Ligonier Ice Fest
The Ligonier Ice Festival is an annual event hosted in Ligonier where you can see beautiful, hand-crafted ice sculptures! Throughout this chilly weekend in January, you can see ice sculpting demonstrations and attend various activities including musical performances and horse-drawn carriage rides.
Candlelight Tours at Compass Inn Museum
Located in Laughlintown, PA the Compass Inn Museum is a nationally-recognized, historic stagecoach stop along modern-day Route 30. Here, you can learn about local history with a guided Christmas-themed candlelight tour.
Ligonier Diamond Light Up Night
Ligonier’s Light Up Night is always a beautiful and fun event! The Ligonier Diamond is the focal point of charming Ligonier so during the winter it gets dressed up in Christmas lights and holiday decorations. If you can’t make it for the formal light up
Go Snow Tubing and Skiing on the Mountains
Seven Springs, Hidden Valley, and Laurel Mountain are the main ski resorts in the Laurel Highlands. Here you can either hit the slopes or snuggle up with some cocoa in the ski lodge. Seven Springs, Hidden Valley, and Laurel Mountain offer winter-themed packages for families, couples, and activities in addition to many holiday-themed events.
Historic Hanna’s Town Three Centuries of Christmas Tours and Holiday Family Day
Leading up to Christmas, Historic Hannas Town offers tours telling how American Christmas traditions changed over three centuries! Costumed guides will lead you through the historic site adorned in period-correct decorations and share stories of Christmases past. At the Holiday Family Day, bring your little ones and explore the history of the holidays!
Warm Up with the Laurel Highlands Pour Tour
This year the Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau is sponsoring a “Pour Tour” where you can explore local breweries, wineries, and cider houses. With your passport, as you collect stamps you’ll receive prizes! This fun adult libations adventure supports local business and provides you with a fun time!
Do a Winter Hike
Even though it might be cold, going for a hike in the winter can still be an adventure, and can help with cabin fever! During the winter, the Laurel Highlands becomes blanketed with snow, which makes for beautiful hiking. Read more about some of our favorites hikes in the Laurel Highlands here!