Walking barefoot on the beach in the middle of winter never gets old, and doing fun Christmas activities in shorts and flip-flops is an easy way to make your friends and family back home jealous! Not to brag, but that’s our normal in Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach.

We’d like to share a few of our charming holiday happenings to inspire a visit when you need a break from the cold and snow: you may need a sweater at night, the days will likely have you running around free as a bird in shorts and flip flops!

Light Time is the Right Time

Waterfront house lit up with Christmas lights, viewed from a boat at nightDuring the holidays, homeowners along the canals of Punta Gorda go all-out decorating the backs of their homes, even some docks and boats, and their de-“light”-ful creations are only visible from the deck of a boat...which is where our various Christmas Lights tours come in. There are several options to witness the wonder:

Christmas Lights Canal Cruises with King Fisher Fleet depart from the elaborately-decorated Fishermen’s Village three times a night for the entire month of December.

If you're looking for a private tour for groups of up to six people, try a Christmas Lights Waterway Cruise with Smoke and Roses Sailing Charters. You can even combine the Christmas lights tour with a sunset tour for an amazing three hours on the water.

Punta Gorda Sailing also offers public and private Christmas Canal Tours for up to 6 guests. Keep an eye out for 2023 availability.

Fishermen’s Village is festooned with over a million Christmas and holiday lights and decorations every year, and the display is a destination in its own right. They'll be turning the display on November 18, 2023 with their Lighting of the Village event, then the Festival of Lights will illuminate the entire Village for the rest of the year. Alongside the holiday fun, Fishermen's Village is always a great place to window shop, buy gifts, have a great meal, watch an amazing sunset, dance to live music, and people watch.

Seasonal Festivities

Lighted tree and buildings for Christmas in Downtown Punta Gorda, FloridaKick the holiday season off right at the Light Up The Night: Downtown Punta Gorda Christmas Tree Lighting event. Featuring a plethora of family-friendly Christmas activities, multiple food trucks, live music, and more, this is the place to be on December 1, 2023! The weather forecast even calls for a light, whimsical snowfall!

We look forward to Gardens Aglow at Peace River Botanical & Sculpture Gardens every year. The gardens will come alive after dark with thousands of lights and decorations, December 15–23 from 6 pm to 9 pm. Rumor has it Santa will be in attendance on select days, and there will be carol singing and S’mores roasting by the fire. This must-do family outing will create holiday memories that will last a lifetime. 

New Year's Festivities

If you’re here for New Year’s Eve—and you definitely should be!—make a note to enjoy the huge fireworks display over Charlotte Harbor by Fishermen’s Village. 

Once you’ve experienced “winter” in Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach, you’ll realize it’s definitely worth a “do over” – every year!