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Shoppers at the Christkindl Market look for gifts

Featured Article

Holidays Become Memories

Two of the Most Enjoyable Times of the Year are Traveling and the Holidays; Why Not Combine the Two?

As the holiday season approaches, so does the time where we begin to plan out what this year will bring with it. When we look back on our lives, some of our most memorable moments both on film (or computers and phones) and in our minds are those times we spent with loved ones. Often times those moments were spent either traveling or during the holidays. If you are looking to double-down this year and do both, we have a suggestion for you!

On the other side of the state, about a five-hour drive—which is both far enough to feel like a getaway but close enough that it can be made with only a stop or two—lies the aptly named town of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Located in the Lehigh Valley region of Eastern Pennsylvania, this town is such a great place to visit during the holidays that it is actually referred to as “The Christmas City.” Although it offers much more than just holiday attractions, for this article, we will just be focusing on a few of its seasonal offerings and more importantly the iconic Hotel Bethlehem, one of the top historic hotels in the country (ranked No. 3 by USA Today). 

The Historic Hotel Bethlehem is synonymous with charm and wonder during the holiday season. Located in downtown Bethlehem, the hotel boasts a spectacular display of more than 35,000 Christmas lights, a multitude of uniquely decorated Christmas trees, 36 wreaths, six 7-foot toy soldiers, two life-size nutcrackers and a gingerbread house modeled after the hotel itself.

Other features of the hotel include the main lobby built in 1922; The Tap Room, which is festive with holiday spirit and oversized lighted ornaments; the Mural Ballroom named for the outstanding murals painted in 1936 by famed American artist George Gray and tell the story of Bethlehem from the walking purchase of William Penn into the Industrial Age; a glistening 15-foot tree and wreaths emulating the Christmas spirit; the on-site restaurant 1741 On the Terrace; the “Christmas in the Garden” themed room recently restored to replicate the original solarium concept of 1922; and the Grand Ballroom decorated to complement the opulence and historic nature of the building.

The hotel is in close proximity to all the great things Bethlehem has to offer this time of year. Plan to visit museums, choose from a variety of carriage rides and walking tours, and of course, view all of the amazing Christmas lights.

For more information, visit HotelBethlehem.com.

To plan out your trip and get more information on some of the many events, visit HistoricBethlehem.org and ChristmasCity.org.

  • Shoppers at the Christkindl Market look for gifts
  • A view of the decorated street from inside the historic Hotel Bethlehem
  • A gingerbread model of the historic Hotel Bethlehem