12 Days of New England Christmas Traditions (Day 8): Mystic Seaport Lantern Light Tours

Mystic Seaport is one of Connecticut’s most beautiful and popular attractions, so it’s not surprising that the town is home to an enduring Christmas tradition.

The Lantern Light Tours have been going on for 35 years now. This special event is both a play and a walking tour. The play differs from year to year (this year’s story has a Twelve Days of Christmas theme), but the walking tour always covers the village of Mystic Seaport, which is the world’s largest maritime museum.

Elements of the tour include lantern-lit paths, horse-drawn carriages, traditional Christmas dance and song, and an appearance by Santa Claus.

While this is a tradition enjoyed by many families, it’s only recommended for children older than four years old as the audience must stand and/or walk for the entire performance. 

The Lantern Light tour is only part of the Christmas by the Sea celebration at Mystic Seaport (the celebration runs through December 27th). Other highlights include storytelling, crafts, music, and displays of Christmas trees and antique children’s toys. 


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