A ‘Wonderland’ of steel, silk and LEDs

Chinese Lanterns at Global Winter Wonderland.

In 2011, this part of the world got a brand new holiday display, this one, at California’s Great America in Santa Clara, CA. Aptly called Global Winter Wonderland, the show came,  mesmerised the San Francisco Bay area and wound up. This winter, it came again — bigger and supposedly better. We couldn’t miss it this time so we braved the low temperatures and let the enchantment of Winter Wonderland take over.

Some giant Chinese Lanterns from Global Winter Wonderland 2012:

A Phoenix and a Flamingo 

Another Chinese Lantern

Castle in the sky

Animal Kingdom

Yet another Chinese Lantern 
Statue of Liberty and India Gate at the ‘Global Village’
King Tutankhamun and Leaning Tower of Pisa at the Global Village section of the park.

Tower Bridge, also at the Global Village
Outer Space (Don’t miss the enlarged aliens on the right.)

‘Dinosaur Age’ 

Underwater World
Put together by International Cultural Exchange Group (an event -management company based in California) Winter Wonderland also has a few rides and performances as part of it. There’s even a laser light show every half hour at the Enchanted Castle (see pic on the right). However, it is the huge Chinese Lanterns that steal the show. There are around 70 of them; in different forms from Santa Clauses and Reindeer to International landmarks and Dinosaurs. The Group calls this the largest multicultural holiday Chinese Lantern Festival in the world. Now, that’s another reason to visit Global Winter Wonderland. πŸ™‚
Global Winterwonderland’s Venue: California’s Great America, Santa Clara, CA
Winterwonderland 2012 – November 23 – January 1, 2012 (Good News is that it has been extended till Jan 6th)4 pm to 10/11 pm.

For more info – http://globalwonderland.org/
Happy 2013 to you!! πŸ™‚
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  1. The colorful illuminated images are indeed magical and mesmerizing ! Loved the fiery zig zag dragon. Happy New Year 2013 Divya.

    • I was really fascinated by the displays. The dragon was a great 'welcome sign' to the holiday display.
      Happy New Year to you too, Mr. Ram. I hope you have 2013 travel plans all charted out. πŸ™‚

  2. A wonderland for sure, Divya and lovely captures! Happy New year to you and your family:)

    • It really is amazing, there are many more interesting displays there at the park. These were just a few of my favourites. Happy 2013 to you and your family also. πŸ™‚

  3. Beautiful pics.. very happy to see our own India gate in the display. Happy New Year

    • It felt good to see that. πŸ™‚ I heard they had a Taj Mahal display at their first event in 2011. I'd seen a picture and it looked pretty cool. πŸ™‚

      Thank you Desi Traveler. Have a great year ahead. πŸ™‚

  4. Those are beautiful pictures … Loved the first one of the dragon


  5. A wonderful, bright, colorful and warm post!
    A real delight this winter for me:)
    (…it's 0.5 degree C in my town today):)
    Thank you Divya for the warmth:):)

  6. A Wonderland indeed. It must have been quite an experience. Loved all the pictures. πŸ™‚

  7. WOW, such amazing lightning. I want to hit west coast, it is beautiful and has such fun activities. Happy New Year πŸ™‚

  8. What a visual treat! Enchanted! Nice to see India Gate too.

    Wish a Very Happy New Year to you and your family!

    • I was really happy to see India Gate. So were the large number of Indians here in the Bay area, I'm sure.
      I wish I'd gotten to see the Taj Mahal they had up the previous year.

      Wish you the same, USP. πŸ™‚

  9. Beautiful structures Divya. I thought that they were made of ice first, but then I realized what your heading was :). I am sure that it would have been a very nice trip to this village. Happy new year πŸ™‚

    • Aren't they! These lanterns were huge and I was awed by the craftsmanship. I'm thinking they should let it stay until the Lunar New Year at least.

      Wish you the same, Raji. Have a travel-filled year ahead. πŸ™‚

  10. Lovely Captures from the show Divya!

  11. wow, those are some amazing pictures!! awesome!!! it must have been a fun evening for you. and a special thanks for that picture of India Gate!

  12. I love lanterns! And tell u what, my husband has been wanting to take me to this place since a week.. We should be going there this weekend. Till now I wasn't much interested but thanks to ur post, I am keen to go!

    • Neha. First of all, Happy New year. πŸ™‚
      Go visit Winter Wonderland asap. It's winding up this weekend (except if they decided to extend it one more time) There's a lot more there, than you see in these pictures. Go surprise yourself :).
      Make sure you're all bundled up, ok. Have fun.

      It's gonna be very cold so if you'd like some chaat, you'll find some at the International food court. Have a fabulous weekend, ok.

  13. Superb pics, Divya! A wonderland for sure:)))

  14. Happy New Year DN. These pics remind me of the lantern festival in Seoul. The lanterns, colors and forms are amazing. Hope you had a good time there like i did in here πŸ™‚ This world is awesome, dont you think?

    • Thank you so much, dear Meoww. I hope the new year has been good so far. Here's wishing the rest of the year will be great. Tell me more about the lantern festival there. With the Lunar New Year coming up, I hope we'll hear more about that on your blog.
      I had a fab time. And yes! the world is absolutely awesome!!!

  15. Brilliant illuminations captured spectacularly. So colourful and vibrant. Happy new year Nambiare! Have a travel filled 2013!


  16. I have been to this one. Amazing pics!

  17. First time on your blog! And I am completely impressed with the winter wonderland pics. It just is so mesmerizing overall!

    • Welcome here, Anu.
      It really was mesmerizing. I was amazed by the amount of work that has gone into the making of all these huge structures.

      Hope so see you here more often. πŸ™‚

  18. Beautiful photos!!! My son will love them! will show him when he gets back from school..

    • Thank you Anuradha. Nice to see you here.
      Please do. I hope he'll like these creative lanterns. I thought the festival was a great place to take kids to. πŸ™‚

  19. I have only one word for all these- WOW!

    Loved them! Thanks so much for sharing!!!

  20. The pictures are so beautiful that I need to attend it now. Wondering if it is equally beautiful in China also. πŸ™‚

    Happy new year to you Divya.

    • After visiting Winter Wonderland, I've been wondering too :D. If you do a trip to China, let me know, ok. I'll come by your blog and see the pictures.

      Thank you so much, Nisha. If you have a California trip happening around Christmas next year, you could go to this event.

      Happy New Year (and happy-travelling) to you. πŸ™‚

  21. Wow..this seems to be a wonderful show. Now I definitely want to see this one. So vibrant, so colorful. Loved the lanterns and the cute animals. So mesmerizingly beautiful! I am sure you had a wonderful time. Just amazing. I hope to go there sometime. Hey.. wish you a wonderful wonderful new year.:)

  22. I'm amazed by the clarity of these low light images… so much achieved by simple lanterns!

    • Thank you Jitaditya. My SLR was giving me trouble, actually the lens was, so I had to take these pics with a point-and-shoot. That was all I had that day. πŸ™‚ I was upset that day. But now after I hear what you say, I'm happy. πŸ™‚
      The lanterns were marvelous. I kept thinking of the amount of work that had gone into creating these grand and impressive displays.

  23. What a bright and colorful event it is…

  24. wow this was amazing. a brilliant illuminating post πŸ™‚

  25. Pingback: Holiday exhibit at Legoland, California, Christmas, 2016

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