Monday, December 19, 2011

The World Record for Christmas Lights

If someone asked you to guess what country held the record for most Christmas lights on a house, most people would probably think of America.  They would be wrong.  The record is held by Australia; in fact, by a house in Canberra.

The house in question is located in Forest.  Those who know Canberra will realise how incongruous this is.  Forest is one of the poshest, most elite suburbs in the city.  The kind of suburb where manicured hedges hide genteel houses.  It is a suburb of quiet tree lined streets, the sort of place where the only traffic is local.

However in the middle of this quiet oasis of the wealthy, one couple has created a mammoth Christmas lights display that attracts hundreds of people a night.  Cars line the surrounding roads, there was actually a mini traffic jam on their street.  Not only that but the 331,038 lights are coordinated to the music that is played, creating a noisy, brightly flashing display that is brilliant to see but must be a nightmare to live next to.

S and I made an impromptu visit on our way home from another event.  We didn't actually know the address but once in the suburb we were easily able to follow the continual stream of traffic and once we were close the overwhelming display made it clear which house we were visiting.

It is hard to describe.  There is a 25m tunnel made of closely woven strands of LED lights.  A huge tree is wrapped in them, the house is adorned.  It is overwhelming really and the photos do not do it justice.

We arrived at about 9.30 and parked a couple of streets away.  The actual street was in gridlock and there were people thronging in all direction.  The display takes donations which are given to SIDS and Kids and I think they would make hundreds of dollars each night.

I can't say I would want to be their neighbours, but I have to say, it is an awesome display and I admire the work to achieve it.  The display is clearly a labour of love but it is one that brings a huge number of people a lot of joy.


  1. Um, what sort of houses do the manicured hedges hide? :)

  2. CheezyK - yay for spellcheck and its ability to create unintentionally hilarious posts. That said it has now been updated, later readers can just wonder what was written there. :)

  3. Gotta love spell check and auto correct hey! It certainly gave me a much needed laugh :)

    As for the actually intended post, that was lovely too - I'm not a big one for Christmas fluff but there's something about a mass of sparkly lights that always makes me smile.

  4. Oh my God! J is from Canberra, and last year we spent Christmas back there, with his family.
    He took me to visit this house, and I was floored with how amazing it is.
    I am SO looking forward to going back on the weekend and being able to visit this house again!

  5. I wish this was in Perth so I could visit. But I also don't wish it was my neighbour! I do love looking at Christmas lights though, there is something very fun about driving at night and seeing houses and trees lit up.

  6. Michaela - I haven't been before but apparently it is bigger than ever. Enjoy!

    Kari - In the next town (Queanbeyan) there is actually a service for the elderly or disabled that is a little bus they can catch to go around and see all the lights! I love the idea, it is amazing how magical it can make even the most ordinary house look.

  7. Oh yay :-)
    I'm heading to Canberra tomorrow night on my drive from Melbourne back to Brisbane.
    My best friend said she would take us to see christmas lights in Forest...I'm excited now :-)

  8. No way!! I had no idea about this. I've never been that into Christmassy things like this (I don't have a tree or single decoration up this year; too hectic) but I think I need to go see this :)

    It actually sounds... dare I say it? Vaguely classy...

  9. Miss Directions - enjoy! and drive safe.

    Hannah - I don't know if classy is the word but it is certainly a spectacle worth seeing.