The best ways to spend the festive season in Nevada this year

Welcome to Nevada road sign along State Route 373 near Death Valley
Edited by Travel Weekly


    Nevada has always been a major drawcard, never short of a global event, the home of sin city has upped the anti with a stellar list of highlights for the festive season and beyond.

    From a North Pole-bound locomotive to a national gathering of Old West storytellers, or the soaring eagles of Carson Valley to the speed demons of Formula 1, the Silver State has plenty to offer adventure-seekers this winter season. “Winter in Nevada brings the state’s diverse landscapes and activities to the forefront,” chief communication officer, Travel Neveda, Tracie Barnthouse, said.

    “Visitors to the Silver State during this time of year will find an array of events and experiences that are sure to make memories for all.”

    The picks of the bunch:

    UTV Legends Championship: Watch the top quad, motorcycle and UTV competitors traverse a challenging 27km course through the Nevada desert. Laughlin, 9-12 November 2023.Formula 1 Las Vegas – ‘Heineken Silver Las Vegas Grand Prix 2023’: The biggest, baddest and fastest motorsport in the world comes to Las Vegas, bringing the excitement of nighttime Formula 1 Racing to the Entertainment Capital of the World. Las Vegas, 16-18 November 2023.Santa’s Reindeer Flyer: All aboard! Northern Nevada Railway offers a magical journey to the North Pole. This enchanting train ride features hot cocoa, cookies, and a visit from Santa Claus himself. Reservations are suggested for these much-in-demand trips. Ely, 18 November – 18 December 2023.Christmas on the Comstock: Step into a world where history meets holiday magic at Christmas on the Comstock, a month-long, Victorian-style celebration featuring an official tree lighting, a saloon crawl, the Believe Again Christmas Giveaway, the V&T Candy Cane Express, the Train O’ Lights and lights so bright, Santa Claus himself can see them from the North Pole. Virginia City, 1-31 December 2023.Parade of Lights: The Parade of Lights kicks off the holiday season with a procession of twinkling floats and festive cheer along Highway 395. Local businesses and even some North Pole VIPs will be in attendance to help light up the night. Carson City, 2 December 2023.

    Parade of Lights. (Jay Aldrich, Travel Nevada, supplied)

    Reno Santa Pub Crawl: Join 15,000 holiday revelers in downtown Reno for the most spirited charity fundraising event in the “Biggest Little City.” The country’s largest Santa gathering, a $10 (USD) pass gets attendees an official Santa Pub Crawl cup, discounted drinks, and free entry to the best bars, breweries, and distilleries in town. Reno, 9 December 2023.Fire and Ice Winter Festival: Billed as the state’s most creative winter festival, White Pine County’s annual celebration features a snow sculpting competition, community art, outdoor winter recreation, and plenty of fireworks. Ely, 12-14 January 2024.National Cowboy Poetry Gathering: Saddle up for the 39th annual celebration of Western cultural arts that’s chock-full of renowned poets, musicians, filmmakers, and artists. This unique event offers a blend of tradition, storytelling, and camaraderie that pays homage to heritage while embracing the future. Elko, 19 January – 3 February 2024.Eagles and Agriculture: Each year, the calving season draws eagles to Carson Valley. Eagles and Agriculture offers attendees the chance to witness these majestic birds, interact with falconers, tour local ranches, hone their photography skills and more. Carson Valley, 1-4 February 2024.Winnemucca Ranch Hand Rodeo Weekend: Watch real working buckaroos go spur-to-spur for prizes (and bragging rights) in Steer Stopping, Wild Mugging, Trailer Loading, Ranch Doctoring and more, at Nevada’s largest and most thrilling Ranch Hand Rodeo. Winnemucca, 28 February – 2 March 2024

    Winnemucca Ranch Hand Rodeo Weekend. (Supplied)

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