Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way!

Jingle Bells? Seriously, in July? Absolutely! Busch Gardens Tampa Bay revealed their brand new Christmas Town to the media in July and we were able to get a sneak peak. It’s never too early, in my opinion, to start thinking about old St. Nick and what size bulbs we’ll use this year. Beginning November 30th and running until December 23rd, Busch Gardens will be opening a magical Christmas Town that will transport you to what we all wish Florida was like during the holidays. It will be open in the evenings only on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights from 6-11 p.m.

Santa-Town-HouseThere will be twinkling lights galore, a very special ice show and a real frozen snow play area for the kids,; just to name a few of the high points (but seriously, there aren’t any low points). A penguin habitat will be set up especially for those nights only and there will be quite a few Christmas treat favorites to go around. Nightly live shows will include the Christian artists “Jars of Clay” and “Jimmy Osmond’s Christmas Jukebox” in which he and his family will perform all of your favorite Christmas hits. Let’s not forget Santa Clause! All are welcome to take a very special tour of Santa’s House with St. Nick himself onsite to take pictures and greet the eager children.

After getting excited about Christmas (in July!) and looking forward to all the lights, scents and sounds to come in late November, my family and I wandered off to partake in all that Busch Gardens has to offer. Ok, first things first. We were dying to ride the newest coaster, Cheetah Hunt, which is the longest coaster in the state of Florida and launches you to 60 mph right at the start. No initial, nail-biting, slow hill climbing here. We waited in line for a little over an hour, but that’s what you should expect at theme parks during the summertime. Just be sure you’re prepared for the heat! The Congo River Rapids ride solved that problem after getting us soaked and we finished the day with a tour of the animals on the Serengeti Railway. The coasters will be open during the special Christmas event, so this is a fantastic place to take your family for the best of both worlds, as well as getting your money’s worth!