Get in the holiday spirit and celebrate the 41st Annual Christmas Lighting Festival in Leavenworth.
Each Saturday and Sunday in December before Christmas, crowds gather to sing "Silent Night" at dusk and witness the lighting of the Bavarian-themed facades and pine trees on the village green.
Here are five great places to stay:
Mountain Springs Lodge offers plenty of activities to keep you busy after the tree lighting ceremony. The dining room serves a famous breakfast and Sunday Brunch, grab and go lunches and steak and salmon dinners in the winter. Sledding, snowshoe rentals and cross-country and downhill skiing are available nearby. This beautiful property can be rented out for a couple or for family reunions, weddings, large parties and even corporate retreats!
Sleeping Lady is a popular destination location in Leavenworth. You can purchase a special cross country, downhill or ride the rails package for your stay, which includes extras such as: gourmet meals; lift tickets; trail passes or transfer passes. Other winter package options include the spa package, the yoga package and the romance package. Special touches such as heated towel racks, plush down comforters and robes, complimentary Wi-Fi and in-room coffee makers will help make your stay more enjoyable. Be forewarned: you won't want to use this time to get caught up on your favorite television shows. There are no televisions in the rooms. (Refrigerators and mini-bars are conspicuously absent, as well).
When the snow falls, Pine River Ranch B&B becomes an enchanted winter wonderland. Self-proclaimed as Washington State's Most Romantic Bed and Breakfast, many of the features on the ranch might entice you to test their claim. Situated on a 22-acre property, with mountain views, you'll be awed by the natural beauty that surrounds you. Indoors, you'll find river rock fireplaces, Jacuzzi tubs and hand peeled arbor log beds. And, to top it off, you won't have to leave your room for breakfast. Breakfast is delivered to your doorstep, so that you can enjoy it in the comfort and privacy of your own room. If you decide to leave your room for any length of time, there are countless activities in which to partake-snowshoeing, skiing and shopping, to name a few.
Hotel Pension Anna features imported furniture from Austria and Germany, a hearty Bavarian breakfast and an outstanding location for the tree lighting ceremony. Each room is equipped with a fireplace and Jacuzzi tub and service is top-of-mind at this family owned and operated hotel.
Spread across 19.5 acres, Featherwinds Bed & Breakfast Guest Inn is a beautiful and romantic setting for an overnight, a weekend, a retreat or a wedding. Wi-Fi, a private bath with a jetted tub and breakfast and dessert are included in your stay. You may enjoy this idyllic location so much that it becomes a place you return to year after year.
To get there by car, take Interstate 90 to Cle Elum and exit for northbound State Hwy 970 (which becomes U.S. Hwy 97) and then take U.S. Hwy 2 to Leavenworth — about 2 and 1/4 hours.
By train, take Amtrak's Chicago-bound Empire Builder on a 3 hour, 20 minute ride. It's a daily service that leaves Seattle's King Street Station at 4:40 p.m., and returns from Leavenworth at 6:08 a.m.
Take a friend for an overnight, or your family for the entire weekend and enjoy chestnuts roasting on an open fire, holiday music throughout the village and-for the ultimate experience-take a sleigh ride through the snow. There's no place quite like Leavenworth, for the holidays!