Enchanted: Forest of Light at Descanso Gardens – An Ideal Holiday Date Idea

Updated on Nov 13, 2019

If you want a magical date experience during the holidays, check out Descanso Gardens Enchanted: Forest of Light in La Canada Flintridge. It really is “enchanted”!



Logistics

You definitely should buy your tickets in advance as this does sell out almost every night. In 2017, tickets were $28 each. I think it was well worth it! Note that tickets are non-refundable and it’s a rain-or-shine event.

My biggest tip would be to dress very warmly because it gets much colder there than other parts of Los Angeles, and you’re outside for almost the whole time.

The on-site parking lot was nearly full when we got there at around 8:15PM, but there were still spots towards the back.

The tickets have set admission times, but once you get in, you may stay as long as you like until closing.

What Is It?

Descanso Gardens is a 151 acre botanical garden which originally was the property of newspaper magnate E. Manchester Boddy. It contains various sections including a rose garden, Japanese garden, Camellia collection, and Oak forest. During the day, it looks like this:

Descanso Gardens during the day
Descanso Gardens during the day

When I went during the day, it was blazing hot. There was less shade than you would expect there.

But during the time around Christmas, they light up the gardens at night with colorful displays, making it a much more spectacular experience.

Path at Descanso Gardens
Path at Descanso Gardens

There is a one-mile path that guides you through the exhibits, which consist of glowing objects or lit-up trees and interesting variations on that theme.

There are bars at various points where you can purchase alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages. I had the hot cider with a shot of rum to start my journey.

Forest at Descanso Gardens
Forest at Descanso Gardens

Some exhibits are more spectacular than others but the overall experience is really good. The crowd consisted of mostly adults on dates and some families, but the exhibits are not as kid-focused as the Zoo Lights show at the LA Zoo.

Glowing discs
Glowing discs

The highlight of the walk for us was a forest which was lit up with tiny green laser spots. It was almost impossible to photograph, and even if I could, I wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise.  It really must be experienced in person!

Towards the end of the path was the Japanese Gardens with cool red ball lights.

The Japanese Garden
The Japanese Garden

Overall, it’s a very sublime and romantic experience!



Afterwards

Before you leave, check out the gift shop, which actually has some charming and cool stuff!

While you’re in the area, drive to Christmas Tree Lane in Altadena not too far away. This is a one-mile distance of street with enormous trees that have been decorated with Christmas lights. It makes an appropriate end to an evening of enchantment.

Christmas Tree Lane in Altadena
Christmas Tree Lane in Altadena

Summary

I highly recommend Descanso Gardens Enchanted: Forest of Light as an excellent date idea. No, it’s not as spectacular as, say, Disney’s Phantasmic or the Main Street Electrical Parade. It’s more sublime and quiet, but still very cool and unusual… and romantic. If you have the right expectations, you and your date will really enjoy the experience.

What did you think of Descanso Gardens Enchanted: Forest of Light? Any questions? Please comment below! – Brian

Shares

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Articles

Date Night at Spago’s New Outdoor Pavilion

Date Night at Spago’s New Outdoor Pavilion

Like many restaurants during the pandemic, Spago in Beverly Hills was in need of additional outdoor dining space. It recently expanded its outdoor dining capacity big time with the 6,500 sq. ft. "Spago L’extérieur", or what people like me call the "Spago Outdoor...

How To Have a Romantic Weekend Getaway In Ojai

How To Have a Romantic Weekend Getaway In Ojai

If you're looking for a romantic and relaxing weekend getaway, look no further than the quirky town of Ojai and the magnificent Ojai Valley Inn. The Inn is consistently rated as one of the top resorts in California by the likes of Conde' Nast Traveler. It's our...

The Best West L.A. / Beverly Hills Date Ideas

The Best West L.A. / Beverly Hills Date Ideas

As I write this in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, so many of the things that we love to do in Los Angeles are closed. Yet, things will return to normal someday, and I write this article with that fact in mind. Some of the great date spots below are closed now...

Six Non-Obvious Virtual Dates To Try During Quarantine

Six Non-Obvious Virtual Dates To Try During Quarantine

Guest post by Alessandra ContiMatchmaker at Matchmakers In The City. I asked my friends at Matchmakers in the City, a certified personal matchmaking firm with offices in Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., for date ideas in the age of...

Ten Ways to Meet Single People During the COVID-19 Shutdown

Ten Ways to Meet Single People During the COVID-19 Shutdown

Dating doesn't have to stop during the quarantine I read an article about how a guy got to date a young woman that he saw from his window by sending his phone number using a drone! These are strange and grim times, with a terrible disease threatening us and many out...

The Most Romantic Restaurants in Los Angeles for Those Special Occasions

The Most Romantic Restaurants in Los Angeles for Those Special Occasions

This is my list of the most romantic restaurants in Los Angeles that you need to book for anniversaries, birthdays, Valentine's day, or when you really want to impress someone special. The restaurants on this list either have exceptional ambiance, or exceptional...

The Best Date Ideas in Malibu, Topanga, and the Pacific Palisades

The Best Date Ideas in Malibu, Topanga, and the Pacific Palisades

Malibu is a great place for an all-day or half-day date when you want to get away from it all without straying too far from the Los Angeles area. You get beautiful beaches and mountains, as well as great restaurants and other attractions. Check out these date ideas in...

The Best Downtown L.A. Date Ideas

The Best Downtown L.A. Date Ideas

Downtown Los Angeles is an ideal date destination with great restaurants, bars, and attractions, many of which are within walking distance. Traffic and parking can be difficult in downtown L.A., so park your car in a good central location (like Pershing Square) and...

The Most Romantic Restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles: 71 Above

The Most Romantic Restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles: 71 Above

71 Above an ideal destination for a special occasion like an anniversary or birthday, or if you just really want to impress someone on a first date! Often, restaurants with a gimmick like a good view or special location have mediocre food. That's not the case with 71...

The Best BBQ in Los Angeles Mid City and West Side

The Best BBQ in Los Angeles Mid City and West Side

Los Angeles is not a town known for its BBQ, but it actually does have some good spots if you know where to look! I love barbecue: the brisket, ribs, cole slaw, beans, potatoes, biscuits, and of course the sauces! Here are some of my favorite BBQ places on LA's West...

Have a Great Date Night at Wolfgang Puck’s Spago in Beverly Hills

Have a Great Date Night at Wolfgang Puck’s Spago in Beverly Hills

Wolfgang Puck is arguably one of the most famous chefs in the world. His flagship restaurant, Spago, in Beverly Hills, has been on my bucket list for a while, and I finally got to try it! Getting There and Parking Spago is located in the heart of...

Pin It on Pinterest

Shares