AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin’s favorite holiday tradition is here! The 2016 edition of the Trail of Lights boasts more than 2 million lights, the return of the Ferris wheel and carousel and a new tunnel and an updated Groovy Grove.
The Basics at-a-glance
- Trail of Lights runs December 10-23 at Zilker Park
- The Trail is open 7 – 10 p.m. every night
- The festival is open rain or shine barring extreme conditions
- December 10-16: Free
- December 17-23: $3 (Children 11 and under are free)
Upgrade Your Trail Experience
- Purchase your tickets in advance
- Get a ZiP Fast Pass or a Platinum pass to get early entry and VIP access to the park. Pass holders can enter as early as 6 p.m.
- ZiP Fast Pass varies from $50-$20 depending on the night
- Platinum Passes start at $80. Packages of two and four available. Platinum passes include valet parking, early entry, heated restrooms, cocoa, cookies, drink and ride tickets. Passes also include front-of-line access to the Ferris wheel and carousel
Parking and Transportation
The outer lanes of Barton Springs Road will be closed from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. on December 12 – 15. Car traffic will continue East and West on internal lanes.
All lanes of Barton Springs Road will be CLOSED on December 3, 10-11, 17-18, 21-23 from 4 PM – 11 PM, and December 16, 19 and 20 from 5:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Limited Trail of Lights parking is available in Zilker Park with a pre-paid parking pass. All parking must be purchased online in advance. Purchase parking for $15 here. Directions to the lots are available on the Trail of Lights website, here.
Avoid the traffic and be shuttled right to the front gate! Shuttle tickets are $5 per rider and include your general admission ticket to the Trail of Lights. Lap children (infants and toddlers) ride free. The shuttle picks up at two convenient locations:
- Burger Center (3200 Jones Rd, Austin, TX 78745)
- Republic Square Park (422 Guadalupe St., Austin 78701)
The first shuttle departs Burger Center and Republic Square Park at 5:30 p.m., the last shuttles depart stops at 8:30 p.m. Shuttles returning from Zilker will run until 10:30 p.m.
Trail of Lights Schedule and Events
Pick a date below to buy tickets, see parking options and plan your trip!