FAQs for Dominion Energy GardenFest of Lights

Planning Your Visit: Tips, Parking, Food & More

GardenFest Ticketing & Entry FAQs


Yes, all Dominion Energy GardenFest of Lights tickets are online ONLY (no walk-ups). When you purchase a ticket, you choose the date and an arrival time. Children under age 3 do not need a ticket. Garden members must reserve their tickets, too.

The time on your ticket is your arrival time. Arrive at the time on your ticket or up to 30 minutes after that time. Example: if your ticket says 4 p.m., arrival time is between 4-4:30 p.m.

The time on your ticket is your arrival time. Arrive at the time on your ticket or up to 30 minutes after that time. Example: if your ticket says 4 p.m., arrival time is between 4-4:30 p.m.

Carpooling is always strongly encouraged. There is not a designated “meet-up” area this year and the inside of the Visitors Center does not have space for meet-ups.

Help us be quick! If you can, please print your ticket and bring it with you. This will make it easier for us to collect and scan. (If you prefer, have your ticket QR code showing on your smartphone ready for scanning.)

For questions about our new FLEX ticket or to transfer your FLEX ticket reservation please email [email protected]

• Same day ticket transfers will only be completed up to 4 p.m.

• All other ticket transfers will be completed within 24 hours

• Guests will not be refunded the difference if they select a lower-priced ticket

• Guests switching from a VALUE/BONUS night to a PEAK night will be required to pay the difference for upgrading to a FLEX PEAK ticket. (ie: Guests cannot switch from a FLEX VALUE/BONUS NIGHT ADULT ticket to a PEAK GENERAL ADULT ticket.)

Proceeds benefit Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. There are no refunds. This is a rain-or-shine event. Garden member tickets are non-transferable to non-members.

There is no will call this year. Meet your group in the Pedestrian Plaza before entry and be sure to forward tickets to anyone in your party who may be arriving separately.

Hours FAQs


  • GardenFest and Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden will be closed on Thanksgiving (Nov. 24), December 24 & 25.
  • GardenFest is open 4 – 10 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day

  • GardenFest is rain or shine and is canceled only in cases of extreme inclement weather. Any closure notices will be posted to the Garden’s homepage and on social media. We do not close if it is simply raining.
  • Only FLEX ticket can be transferred to another date. Restrictions apply.

Planning Your Visit FAQs


We advise guests to allow at least an hour for their GardenFest visit (this would mean arriving by 9 p.m. since GardenFest ends at 10 p.m.) For those who don’t want a lot of walking, there is much to see in the Central Garden (between the Visitors Center and Conservatory); however, there are many lights along the Garden’s pathways and in the Children’s Garden for those who want to “experience it all!”

  • We have loaner wheelchairs and strollers for members and guests. They are free and available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • You may also want to read more about the Garden’s accessibility.

GardenFest is a walk-through show. We encourage guests to dress accordingly in good footwear and weather-appropriate clothing.

GardenFest is a family-friendly event! If you are bringing small children, please note there is walking involved, so you may want to bring a stroller. Since the show is outdoors, it’s also a good idea to dress children according to the weather.

Come early! Arrive early and explore the Garden in twilight when it’s less busy, then watch as the sun goes down and the magic happens. Timed tickets start at 4 p.m. Hot drinks are available for purchase in the Children’s Garden.

Check back for details on the maze.

Leashed dogs are allowed on these select Dominion Energy GardenFest of Lights nights: Monday, Nov. 20, 2023; Monday, Nov. 27, 2023; and Monday, Dec. 4, 2023. Please read our rules and guidelines for visiting Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden with dogs.

The busiest nights tend to be weekends and the week prior to Dec. 25. If you want to come when there are fewer people we would suggest purchasing tickets on a rainy evening or for a time slot at 8:30 p.m.


Food FAQs


Look for fast-casual dining in the Jingle Bar and Grill (location: Tea House) well as drinks and snacks. The Restaurant in the Garden (location: Garden Cafe) has holiday dinners by reservation.  In the Children’s Garden, Espresso-A-Go-Go sells hot drinks and cookies.

Outside food may not be brought into the event.  Feel free to bring your water bottle. We have water bottle refilling stations.

Hot cocoa and s’mores kits can be purchased from Espresso A-Go-Go in the Children’s Garden. We have sticks so you can roast s’mores in the Kelleher Warming fire in the Children’s Garden.

The Kelleher Warming Fire is back this year! Take a break for some hot cocoa and s’mores (for purchase) around the fire in the Children’s Garden.

It’s good to stay hydrated. You may want to bring water to drink (we have a touchless water bottle refilling station). Also, bottled water is for sale in the Garden Shop.


Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is located at 1800 Lakeside Avenue in Richmond, Virginia (23228). If you are using GPS, you may want to use “Henrico” instead of “Richmond.” We’re on the corner of Lakeside Avenue and Hilliard Road in Henrico County. The Garden entrance is off of Lakeside Avenue. Map.


Wonder what’s involved in putting one of the biggest Richmond holiday traditions? Here are GardenFest facts that you won’t believe!

GardenFest by the Numbers