Walk through history as we guide you to things to learn, places to discover, and events that help connect us to our rich heritage.
December 22nd, 2023
BETHLEHEM, PA, December 2023 – Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites (HBMS) invites everyone to share in the holiday season with us! When family and friends visit between Christmas and New Years, find out why Bethlehem is The Christmas City while planning your scenic downtown visit.
Historic Bethlehem hosts a variety of festive family activities to entertain all ages including Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides, the Trees of Historic Bethlehem Exhibition, the Christmas City Stroll Walking Tour, the Bethlehem by Night Motorcoach Tour and the Spirits of Christmas Pub Walking Tour – there’s something for everyone and plenty of shopping! Select dates and times can be found on the HBMS website (www.historicbethlehem.org). Assorted activities take place through January 7, 2024
For a cozy adventure, hop aboard our Horse-drawn Carriage Rides, gliding through Bethlehem’s picturesque downtown. New this year, add on an audio tour download that you can listen to during the ride, directly from your cellphone.
Four-person carriages are $90. Audio tour download add-on is available for $10. Carriages must be reserved ahead of time online at historicbethlehem.org.
This year’s Trees of Historic Bethlehem are dripping with finery! This dazzling array of Christmas trees beautifully decorated by the Bethlehem Garden Club and local volunteers is sure to awe and inspire. Admire 25 trees across three walkable sites: the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts, the Moravian Museum of Bethlehem, and the Single Sisters’ House. Vote for your favorite tree online or in the museums! Tickets include access to the Holiday Putz Display at the Sisters’ House with a fun scavenger hunt activity for the kids.
The Trees are displayed alongside Unspun: Stories of Silk, which tells the fascinating story of silk in the Lehigh Valley. Starting with the attic cocooneries of Moravian Bethlehem, the exhibition details the region’s rise in the industry and looks at silk’s impact on fashion and the global marketplace. This colorful show is made possible, in part, through generous support from presenting sponsor, The Helen & R. K. Laros Foundation, and is a great companion to this year’s luxurious Trees of Historic Bethlehem display!
A multi-site Trees Pass can be purchased for $25.
Walk through Historic Bethlehem with our certified local guide in period dress on the Christmas City Stroll Walking Tour. Designed especially for the Christmas season, this tour focuses on cherished traditions: a candle-in-every-window, beeswax candles, the renowned Star of Bethlehem and Moravian Star, the community Putz and more set among Bethlehem’s exquisite Victorian and colonial architecture and two National Historic Landmarks: the 1741 Gemeinhaus and the Bethlehem Waterworks.
The Christmas City Stroll Adult admission is $12 for HBMS members and $17 for non-members. Child’s admission is $8 for HBMS members, $11 for non-members.
The Bethlehem by Night Motorcoach Tour explores the history and traditions of Bethlehem from the comfort of a heated motorcoach. Sit back and experience the Christmas City on a trip back in time with our certified costumed guide.
Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for children and can be reserved online at historicbethlehem.org.
New this year, the Spirit of Christmas Pub Tour! Step into a mesmerizing winter wonderland with this historic holiday pub tour, where a costumed docent guides you on an adults-only escapade through the historic gems of Bethlehem. Indulge your senses as you sip and see, diving into the origins and meanings of the beautiful Moravian traditions which will add depth to your holiday experience. Don’t miss this jovial tour, guaranteed to leave you with memories as sweet and rich as the spirits you’ve savored. One complimentary tasting is included at the start of the tour at the 1810 Goundie House. (Participants must be at least 21 years of age and show valid ID.)
The Spirits of Christmas Pub Tour is $20 for HBMS Members, $25 for Non-Members. Tours leave from the Historic Bethlehem Visitor Center at 505 Main Street, Bethlehem, PA.
In the first-floor gallery, enjoy a trip from past to present with the Winter: A Step Back in Time exhibition, presented in partnership with the Lehigh Art Alliance. This exhibition features an array of classically executed realist works by contemporary local artists, interspersed with historic works from the HBMS Collections. The exhibit includes a never-before-displayed work by famed French artist Bernard Gantner, recently gifted as part of a donation of art, purchased from the art gallery at Hess’s.
In the second-floor gallery, experience the winter & holiday season through the eyes of Lehigh Art Alliance members with the Lehigh Art Alliance 2023 Winter & Holiday Themed Juried Exhibition. In this themed exhibition, the artists interpret what the season means to them. The result is sometimes traditional, and sometimes surprising, but always enjoyable. Come view the Galleries and don’t forget to place your vote for the ever popular “People’s Choice Award”!
Admission to the Winter Art Exhibitions and Unspun: Stories of Silk is included in your purchase of a Trees of Historic Bethlehem Pass. With this pass, you get access to 25 trees across three walkable sites: the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts, the Moravian Museum of Bethlehem, and the Single Sisters’ House.
Stop by the 1750 Smithy to see our colonial Blacksmith at work, then head over to the Museum Store at 505 Main Street to shop for unique gifts.
Plan your trip and reserve your tickets today! Visit HistoricBethlehem.org or call 1.800.360.TOUR.
Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites (HBMS) is a not-for-profit institution that brings to life three centuries of American history. HBMS tells the story of a town of great influence. It is home to some of our nation’s early settlers, the first pumped municipal water system in the American colonies, and one of the world’s greatest industrial companies. Bethlehem is located in eastern Pennsylvania, an hour’s drive north from Philadelphia and 2 hours west of New York City. Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites is an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and part of a National Historic Landmark District — a designated site on the US World Heritage Tentative List. HBMS is proud to be a part of the effort to bring World Heritage Site status to Historic Moravian Church Settlements—Bethlehem along with Herrnhut, Germany and Gracehill, Northern Ireland/UK.
Translate the Historic Bethlehem Museums & Sites website into your language of choice!