Ice Sculptures and Reindeer Magic at the Gaylord National

If you’ll be in Washington, D.C. this December, don’t miss the Gaylord National‘s action-packed Christmas on the Potomac. There is so much to experience that I don’t even know where to begin! The hotel’s ICE! attraction is pretty amazing to see in person. We recently checked it out (thanks to the Gaylord National for hosting us) and would definitely recommend the whole event to vacationing families.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi
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Let me set the scene: Bundle up, as you prepare to walk through a 9-degree attraction, featuring 13 scenes of more than two million pounds of hand-carved ice sculptures.

gaylord national
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

You’ll see Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, and others.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

You can even slide down two-story-tall ice slides in the Island of Misfit Toys. The finale is a beautiful ice-carving of the Nativity scene, set amidst twinkling lights.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

ICE! is open daily through January 1, 2018. Tickets start at $24. Kids 3 and under are free. Click here for more information.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

The resort itself has also been transformed into a Christmas wonderland, with more than two million lights, a suspended 55-foot tall Christmas tree, a 20-foot wide Washington, D.C. gingerbread display and a magical Christmas Village!

gaylord national
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

The girls had a blast in the Christmas Village, where they went ice skating, rode the carousel and the train, and even decorated a gingerbread house!

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

Kids can also create a cute polar bear plush to bring home in the Build-A-Bear Workshop®. For collectors, this one’s been designed exclusively for Gaylord Hotels and can be personalized with adorable winter clothes.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

Families can then work together to solve the Build-A- Bear Workshop® Scavenger Hunt to win a special prize!

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

Afterward, head over to the atrium to watch the holiday spectacular concert, JOY. In this show, eight carolers dance as they sing all the classics. It’s followed by a tree lighting show that includes laser lights, a dancing water fountain, and indoor snow flurries.

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

In the morning, be sure to attend Rudolph’s Holly Jolly™ Breakfast, where your kids will get tableside visits by Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, and Clarice!

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

The breakfast buffet is delicious; the games are fun; and the sing-along is adorable! The breakfast is only held on certain days, so be sure to check the site.

gaylord national
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

Get a sitter for a festive date night: Mistletoe Mixology is a 90-minute, hands-on class teaches participants the basics of cocktail making. Participants get to make three unique holiday cocktails ad sample hors d’oeuvres provided by the resort chef. So fun!

gaylord national ice
Photo: Carmen Sognonvi

I’ve written about my affection for this hotel in the past. Gaylord National is a beautiful, AAA-Four Diamond resort that has nearly 2,000 luxurious rooms; a breathtaking, 19-story atrium; critically acclaimed restaurants; a modern spa; and a rooftop lounge. There’s always so much happening there, no matter which season you visit! They really do a great job of creating a unique and fun vacation experience, especially for families. What will you do first when you get there?

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About Carmen Sognonvi

Carmen Sognonvi is a luxury family travel and lifestyle digital influencer at Top Flight Family. Her insights on travel have been featured in Wanderlust Travel Magazine, TravelPulse, HOTELS Magazine, Seatrade Cruise News and more. Carmen firmly believes that you can (and should) travel with your kids from a young age. She offers families practical solutions for travel, as well as tips on how to travel in luxury for less. She lives in New York City with her multiracial and multicultural family of four. Follow her on Instagram, FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

Click here to read Carmen's articles

Imagine exploring 2 million pounds of ice transformed in to beautiful ice sculptures! That and more is what you'll experience at Gaylord National ICE.

Some posts on this site may contain affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, Top Flight Family may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

Top Flight Family is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Read the site's full disclosure and privacy policy here.

The author received complimentary accommodations, meals and activities from Gaylord National for purposes of this review. All opinions are her own.

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