It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Strings of Christmas lights are starting to adorn guttering and blow-up Santas are being erected on front lawns. And families everywhere are starting to drive very, very slowly through suburban streets pointing out lights to each other.
An evening drive in the weeks before Christmas is a ritual many Central Coast families love and with our Central Coast Christmas Lights Map and feature outlining the best-decorated homes we hope to make it that much easier for you to plan your route.
Want to know where the MUST-VISIT homes are? Scroll down to see photos of some of the Coast’s best-lit homes and to read our interviews with the owners.
Want to see the MAP? Scroll down to see it and to start planning your Christmas Lights drive.
We’ll be updating our Christmas Lights Map every day with new addresses, so make sure you bookmark this page and check back regularly.
Where to find The Central Coast’s Best Christmas Lights
Homeowners have put on the ritz this year with music-accompanied lights shows, double-storey Christmas trees and blow-up Santas that tower over homes. We’ve chatted with the wonderful residents of some of our favourite must-visit homes across the Central Coast – from Wyongah in the north to St Hubert’s Island in the south – to discover their motivation in installing such showstopping displays and about their love for the festive season.
CHITTAWAY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS
READ THEIR STORY + MORE DETAILS
Vanessa and her family have been decorating their home at Chittaway Bay for the past 10 years. Each year the family decks out the front lawn in lights and a giant six-metre tall inflatable Santa – the largest on the Central Coast.
Each year they normally have a slushie machine set up on their front lawn on hot summer nights ($1 donation) and the family hand out lollies every evening throughout December. But it’s still undecided if this aspect will go ahead this year due to COVID.
Side note with heart: The slushie machine normally comes courtesy of a friend who runs a party hire business and the lollies have been donated for the past few years by a local who runs a confectionery company but donates anonymously. Love.
Collecting for Carrie’s Beanies 4 Brain Cancer in 2020: Vanessa says, “We have lost a dear friend and have another close friend battling this disease this year.
Want to say thank you! | Click here to donate to Vanessa’s Beanies 4 Brain Cancer fundraising initiative.
MORE DETAILS: Follow their Chittaway Christmas Lights Facebook page.
CHRISTMAS LIGHTS AT 55 DARRI RD, WYONGAH
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Michelle Gribble has been decorating her Wyongah home for the past 12 years and every year her $8000-display gets bigger and better as she adds to her collection at the Boxing Day sales. This year you’ll find even more inflatables and lights.
Playing in Puddles has visited Michelle’s display and we were amazed at how many fun and festive elements Michelle has managed to include on her front lawn. There was Santa’s lounge room (complete with brick fireplace), loads of inflatables (including Santa on a motorbike, oversized penguins, Santa piloting a plane, prancing reindeer and Santa driving a train), myriad fairy lights, a snow machine, and a ginormous Christmas tree adorned in tinsel, baubles, bows, lights, candy canes and, of course, a crowning star.
Normally every Saturday evening Michelle hosts a mini festival of fun on her lawn each Saturday throughout December – with people dressed as Minnie Mouse, Mickey Mouse, Anna from “Frozen”, Handy Manny and Santa himself making an appearance and handing out lolly bags to visiting kids. Due to COVID, this year this will not be able to go ahead.
Image ©Playing in Puddles.
THE RICHARDS’ LIGHTS, WOY WOY
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This house has long been a stand-out favourite for kids with its umpteen lights, lasers, festive inflatables and candy canes.
They also normally have a snowmaker, a Thomas train, and lots of chocolate! But, of course, this year those interactive elements won’t be able to run due to our friend COVID.
It’s not surprising that this display is so child-friendly, as Sharon Richards worked in childcare for 20 years.
The Richards started decorating the family home some 27 years ago, and last year they erected some 40,477 lights! What they can make they make (such as the giant snow domes), but they also buy a lot of their decorations at the Boxing Day Sales: “Each year we set a budget that we never stick to”, says Sharon.
“We enjoy doing it,” She adds. “My daycare kids from 20 years ago show up. They come every year so we get to watch them grow up”.
Collecting for Ronald McDonald House at Gosford Hospital: They have a donation bucket out the front with all proceeds going to Ronald McDonald House. “One day we might have a grandchild who needs it,” says Sharon. Last year they raised more than$1,100!
MORE DETAILS: Follow the Richards family’s Facebook page for updates.
CHRISTMAS LIGHTS FOR ANGELS, WADALBA
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Cindy and Troy are the owners behind the famous Settlement Drive display. Cindy says, “My husband Troy is the mastermind behind our display. He spends most of the year working on the display – from designing or sourcing props to synchronising the lights to music on the computer. The actual assembly of the display takes about 4 weeks.” This year the display is going to be a whole lot bigger with 6000 more lights!
Last year Troy had already gone bigger, saying, “I’ve added new wreaths, singing elements, a sleigh with kangaroos, gingerbread man, a lot of stars on the top roof and new larger snowflakes. The show has grown so large that I’m now taking over some of the next-door neighbour’s house to fit it all!”
Troy says, “We have now turned this little show into a full-time profession. I actually manufacture all the props that are at the house and I am helping a few families around the Coast have the light show they always wanted, so that’s exciting”.
Collecting for The Foundation for Angelman Syndrome and Therapeutics Australia: Cindy and troy’s daughter was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome in 2015, and with their display, they hope to raise awareness of this neurological disorder, which causes intellectual disability, severe language impairment, movement problems and frequent seizures, among other symptoms. Last year they raised $1022 for the charity.
Want to say thank you! | Donate to Cindy and Troy’s fundraising link today.
Christmas Lights on Bayberry Ave, Woongarrah
read their story + More details
Matthew Redman has been working on his computerised Christmas light display since February! Yes, you read that correctly: February!
Matthew’s an old hand at the decorations – with 20 years under his belt. It takes him four weeks to set up the display each year and he says, “I get a big buzz from the joy on the faces of kids and families seeing our Christmas Lights display go off”. This year he has lights synchronised to more than 25 songs.
Collecting for Sydney Children’s Hospital: For the past six years Matthew’s display has raised money for the Sydney Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Hospital at Westmead, and last year they raised a staggering$16,037!
“We experienced the loss of a very young child in our extended family,” says Matthew. “The Children’s Hospital was superb with her ongoing care and the support that they provided during her brave fight, and to the family following her passing.”
Want to say thank you! | Click here to make a donation to Matthew’s Sydney Children’s Hospital in Randwick fundraising initiative.
Santa Photos | Santa will be there on Saturday 5th, 12th and 19th December for photos.
2020 will be different |The annual Christmas on Bayberry Festive Night will not go ahead this year due to COVID restrictions.
MORE DETAILS: Follow Matthew’s “Christmas on Bayberry” Facebook page.
57 KATOOMBA AVE, SAN REMO
SPECIAL EVENTS: Post your letter to Santa here and get a reply!
READ THEIR STORY + MORE DETAILS
Each year, from early November, Jody Heterick has erected a special post box out the front of her home that delivers children’s letters directly to the North Pole. And every child who posts a letter to Santa receives a letter back from Saint Nick himself (it gives you the warm and fuzzies doesn’t it).
Sadly last year, for the first time in 14 years, their lights didn’t go ahead, but they’re bringing it back in 2020!
Due to the fun that is COVID, it’s unknown yet whether Santa and Mrs Claus will make their weekend appearances as they have in previous years… but you can be sure you’ll be up for a treat with their light display nevertheless.
Enter for your chance to win a $3000 Family Prize Package!
The Grand Prize includes a $2200 Family Photoshoot and Canvas Print Package from Soul Story Photography!
Add your home to our Central Coast Christmas Lights map!
Have we missed your family’s Christmas Lights Display? Please add your address and upload a photo to the map below or email your address and a few photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. Know of a house in your street that puts on a great display, add them too.
Click Here for Instructions on How to Use the Map
+ Use the drop-down “Filter” bar above the map to limit your search to individual homes, whole street displays, public displays or only “Must-visit” locations.
+ Click on the map icons to see the relevant address and a photo.
+ Want to limit your search to a specific suburb or specific address? Use the “Search” bar under the map to narrow your results.
+ Click on the “directions” box to get directions from wherever you may be – ain’t that so clever!
+ Want to add your address to the map? Scroll down for instructions on how to do that.
Click Here for Info on How to Add Your Home to the Map
The Playing in Puddles’ Christmas Lights Map is a map for all local families and we want you to be involved. If you decorate your house we invite you to include your home on the map. Know of a house in your street that puts on a great display, add them too.
Marker Title: Give your home a festive name.
Marker address: Add your address.
Marker description: Please add your email and address so that we can contact you next Christmas to see if you’d like to remain on the map. Don’t worry, we promise the email won’t be published, we won’t send you any other emails and we won’t share your email with third parties.
Marker Images: Please keep the size of images to no more than 300KB. The software will not accept images larger than 1MB.
Marker category: To be considered a “Must-see lights” display, please upload an image (no more than 300KB) and provide an email address in the “description” so we can get in touch for further details of your fabulous display.
PLEASE NOTE: Your marker will not be published immediately. To prevent website spammers, all map locations are approved by us before going “live” on the site. Please allow up to 4 days for this to happen.
Having trouble? If you’re finding it difficult to load your details on our map, please email your address and a few photos to email@example.com.
Must-see homes that won't be going ahead in 2020
There are a couple of favourite must-visit homes that won’t be lit up this year. We know you’ll be asking about them, so we’ve noted them here:
+ The Lamberts Christmas Lights at 64 Hampstead Way, Rathmines. For the past 12 years, Neree and Geoff Lambert have been erecting some 60,000-80,000 lights in their front yard each Christmas and collecting money for the Westpac Rescue Helicopters that fly over their home. In 2019 they announced that 2020 would be their final year before retiring their decorations. But, given the year that 2020’s been, they have decided not to go ahead with the lights this year. We want to thank Neree and Geoff for the huge amount of joy they brought to so many families over the years, and we hope they have an absolutely wonderful – and quieter – Christmas this year.
Thank you to all of the wonderful locals mentioned above and to the many others who turn on fantastic light displays each year. Thank you for your generosity and time and for bringing so much joy to so many people.
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