Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Las Noches de las Luminarias at Desert Botanical Garden

My favorite thing to do in December is go to Las Noches de las Luminarias at the Desert Botanical Garden. It's beautiful and romantic, sort of like the grown-up version of ZooLights. This year the garden exhibited works by Allan Houser, along with countless plants illuminated nicely by thousands of luminarias. The exhibit changes every year.

You walk along the garden's pathways for what seems like many miles, so comfortable shoes, hot chocolate and warming clothing are a must, as is a camera. Along the way, cheerful musicians, including Native American Cedar Flutist Anthony Wakeman (who plays soothing music that made me want to curl up in a blanket and go to sleep) and cowboys The Hey Boyz, entertain guests.

A group of friends and I tried to use the map of the garden at first, but eventually we just gave up and let the pathways guide us around. Besides, it's too dark to even see the map.

Desert Botanical Garden

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

ZooLights at Phoenix Zoo

With hot chocolate in hand, I took a walk through ZooLights at the Phoenix Zoo. ZooLights is exactly what it sounds like ... animal-shaped light displays at the Zoo. The lights are accompanied by and in some places synced to Christmas music. It's a good time, although I'm not sure I could bear the cold without the hot chocolate to warm me up. These Phoenix winters are rough!

We even saw a (real) zebra.

Ticket prices range from $10 to $12 for value tickets and $16-18 for any night tickets. You can save a couple of dollars by buying tickets online. Children 2 and younger are free.