10 winter activities to do this December

Graphic by Sasha White

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, especially in Boise. With so many exciting winter activities to enjoy you’ll never be at a loss for a fun way to embrace the cold. 

Winter Garden aGlow

Experience a Boise classic with The Botanical Garden’s Winter Garden aGlow which is running until Dec. 31. With dazzling lights, delicious treats and a visit to Santa this event will wow audiences of all ages. Enjoy a new feature of the event, the Gingerbread Village which will include magical art by artist Julia Green.

Ice Skating

If you want to make your holiday shopping infinitely more festive, stop by The Village at Meridian for some ice skating. With so many restaurants and shops, this rink is the perfect addition to this bustling outdoor shopping center.  

Carriage Rides

If you want to ride in style there’s no better way than a free carriage ride through downtown Boise. Riders will need to be at Bannock and 9th near the Washington Trust Bank and rides are first come first serve from 4-8 p.m. Rides are offered Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, and 17. 

Hot Springs 

If you can convince your friends to do a mini road trip, the Idaho City hot springs are well worth the drive. Enjoy poolside snacks and drinks as well as free cold water in case you overheat while soaking in the relaxing natural spring water. The Springs charges $55 an hour for two adults with an option to add a third or fourth person for an extra $5.

Movie Night

If you want to spend a night out of the cold, take a trip down memory lane while watching classic holiday films at The Egyptian Theater. Home Alone will be playing Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m., Disney’s A Christmas Carol will be playing Dec. 10 at 11 a.m. and countless other Christmas classics will be featured throughout the month. 

Festival of Trees

Saint Alphonsus’ Festival of Trees is a way to spend an afternoon out of the cold witnessing beautifully decorated Christmas trees and getting to watch performances from local performers. 100% of the proceeds from this event are donated to St. Al’s Cancer Institute and tickets are priced at $10 for adults. With a plethora of festive displays, attendees can purchase a decorated wreath or tree as well as shop in the festival’s gift shop. 

Bogus Basin

If you’ve chosen to embrace the colder weather, there is no better place to spend a wintery day than Bogus Basin. Whether you want to try your hand at skiing or snowboarding, or would rather snowshoe and explore the trails, Bogus Basin offers something for everyone. Prices vary depending on the selected activity and time frame.

Christmas in Color

If you love driving around looking at Christmas lights, this winter wonderland will be a dream come true. Christmas in Color features an incredible drive-through light show that drivers can sync up to their radio so that the lights correspond with the music. This event ends Dec. 30 and it is $35 per vehicle. 


Featuring many festive pieces to paint, Ceramica is a great way to stay out of the cold and create a masterpiece. Enjoy painting a new holiday decor item for your home or come in on Dec. 16 to create a handmade Christmas piece. Prices vary depending on the piece and reservations are encouraged. 

The Potato Drop

You’re not officially an Idahoan until you’ve attended the New Year’s Eve potato drop. Get a bite to eat downtown or enjoy vendors at the event and performances on the main stage beginning at 6 p.m. Then, secure your spot at the Capitol building to watch the spud-tacular potato drop.

Although you may be tempted to spend the winter curled up under a blanket on the couch, Boise is filled with so many fun activities to enjoy and memories to make with friends and family.

Leave a Reply