Celebrate the holiday season with Historic New England

See historic houses decorated for the season, get your shopping done, make Christmas crafts, and more at our holiday events. Members save on tickets to all events. Don’t forget to buy a gift membership when you visit. Find information about holiday activities, and which Historic New England properties will be decorated for Christmas, below.

Victorian Christmas at the Eustis Estate

1424 Canton Avenue, Milton, Mass.
Thursday – Sunday, November 29 – January 6
Explore the 1878 mansion while it’s lavishly decorated for Victorian Christmas, thanks to the help of local garden clubs. Visit during regular hours, between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Regular admission prices apply. Plan your visit or call 617-994-6600.

Holiday Events

Mistletoe and Holly Holiday Artisan Sale

Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, November 23 – December 9, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and Visitor Center, South Berwick, Maine

Get into the holiday spirit and buy local this year with handcrafted items made by regional artists and artisans, including pottery, handwovens, wood, jewelry, toys, clothing, and more, at the Sarah Orne Jewett Visitor Center. While you’re here, see the exhibition Hand-Hooked Rugs: New Works by Seacoast Ruggers and tour the home of one of America’s most iconic authors.

Make Your Own Evergreen Wreath

Sunday, November 25, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Casey Farm, Saunderstown, R.I.

Learn how to make an evergreen wreath from scratch at this workshop led by a master gardener in the barn at Casey Farm. Then, using natural materials, decorate another wreath to take home or give as a present. Casey Farm will supply hot cider, seasonal goodies, and all craft materials; you bring your holiday cheer and creativity.

Home for the Holidays

Friday, November 30, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and Visitor Center, South Berwick, Maine

Celebrate the season during South Berwick’s Home for the Holidays event with an open house at the Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and Visitor Center. Enjoy hot cider and seasonal music while you shop for handcrafted gifts at our Mistletoe and Holly Artisan Sale.

Santa Claus at the Eustis Estate

Saturday, December 1, noon – 2:00 p.m.

Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Santa Claus is coming to the Eustis Estate. Take a photo with Santa and see the 1878 mansion decorated for Christmas. Enjoy cookies and cider in our cozy kitchen. Before or after meeting Santa, join us for a drop-in craft workshop beginning at 10:00 a.m. Historic New England educators will show you how to make your own wrapping paper and pop-up cards. Craft activities recommended for families with children ages 5 to 12.

Christmas Cheers at the Eustis Estate

Sundays, December 2, 9, and 16, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Enjoy a magical evening of music and holiday cheer at the Eustis Estate. Explore the 1878 mansion, which has been lavishly decorated for Christmas, while live holiday music fills the halls. Light refreshments, including wine and cider, will be served.

Merry Historic Milton: Progressive Tasting Tour

Friday, December 7, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. and 7:30 – 10:30 p.m.

Forbes House MuseumWakefield Estate, and Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Join this second annual exclusive progressive tasting event through three historic mansions in Milton: Forbes House Museum, the Wakefield Estate, and the Eustis Estate. Each house will be decorated for the holidays, drawing inspiration from the holiday traditions of New England.

The tour begins at the Forbes House Museum with appetizers, a beverage, and live chamber music. Next, enjoy a cozy fireside stop at the Wakefield Estate for the main course, then on to the Eustis Estate for a nightcap and dessert with live jazz. New this year and included with your ticket, take home a professional souvenir photo.


Christmas at Nickels-Sortwell House

Friday to Sunday, December 7 – 9, noon – 3:00 p.m.

Nickels-Sortwell House, Wiscasset, Maine

Experience a nineteenth-century Christmas with twenty-first century flair at the 1807 Nickels-Sortwell House. Tour the first floor with each room specially decorated for the holiday by the Garden Club of Wiscasset, Michelle Peele Floral + Home Design, and more. Hear stories of two centuries of life in this beautiful mansion. Hot cider and goodies will be for sale in the mansion kitchen. After touring the house, shop for unique gifts from the garden and specialty craft vendors in our historic barn. Presented as part of the Wiscasset Holiday Marketfest.


Christmas Tea at the Eustis Estate

Saturday, December 8, and Tuesday, December 18, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Celebrate the season with a Victorian afternoon tea at the Eustis Estate. Relax in the beautifully decorated hall and enjoy tea sandwiches, scones, and other treats, including an optional champagne toast. Your ticket includes admission to the museum and the special exhibition, Head to Toe: Hat and Shoe Fashions from Historic New England.


A Victorian Christmas at Roseland Cottage

Saturday and Sunday, December 8 and 9, 1:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Roseland Cottage, Woodstock, Conn.

Step back in time and see Roseland Cottage decorated in authentic Victorian style for the holidays, inspired by the Bowen family memoir The Christmas of 1887. Make your own Victorian tree ornament and take a tour conducted by a costumed guide.

Holiday Crafts and Storytime

Saturdays, December 8 and 22, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Enjoy extra holiday cheer with special child-friendly activities while your family tours the Eustis Estate, which is decorated for Victorian Christmas. Join Historic New England educators in the kitchen for drop-in craft workshops to make top hats and stockings in connection with the special exhibition Head to Toe. Head upstairs to the library for holiday storytime at 12:30 p.m.


The Evolution of Christmas from the 1600s to the 1900s

Sunday, December 9, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Gov. John Langdon House, Portsmouth, N.H.

Join Ken Turino of Historic New England for a delightful exploration of Christmas traditions through 1900, when Woodbury Langdon owned the house on Pleasant Street. Following the lecture, stay for a reception with the speaker and a chance to tour the first floor of Governor John Langdon House.

Christmas Tea at Phillips House

Friday, December 14, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m.; Saturday, December 15, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Phillips House, Salem, Mass.

Celebrate the season with an Edwardian afternoon tea at Phillips House. Relax in the Samuel McIntire-designed rooms and enjoy tea sandwiches, scones, and other treats.

Holly Jolly Sing-Along and Lantern Parade

Saturday, December 15, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass.

Join us for an enchanting family-friendly holiday lantern stroll and joyous Christmas carols at the Eustis Estate. Decorate a lantern with your own designs, then join a parade around the property. The Milton High School choir leads a sing-along of festive winter songs. Warm up with hot chocolate, coffee, and treats, and explore the decorated museum.


Santa in Salem

Sunday, December 16, noon – 3:00 p.m.

Phillips House, Salem, Mass.

Santa Claus is coming to Phillips House! Take a photo with Santa and see the elegant Chestnut Street mansion from a pint-sized perspective.

Before or after meeting Santa, join us for cookies and cider and for a drop-in Christmas craft workshop. Historic New England staff will show you how to make your own paper angels, wrapping paper, and pop-up cards, and help you write a letter to Santa. Craft activities are recommended for families with children ages 4 to 10.

Holiday Centerpiece Workshop

Sunday, December 16, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Lyman Estate Greenhouses, Waltham, Mass.

Create your very own festive centerpiece for your holiday table. Greenhouse Manager Lynn Ackerman leads this workshop using fresh-cut greens and berries along with holiday cut flowers. You will leave with your centerpiece finished and smelling fantastic.

See exterior Christmas decorations at these properties:

Barrett House, New Ipswich, N.H.

Codman Estate, Lincoln, Mass.

Gov. John Langdon House, Portsmouth, N.H.

Lyman Estate, Waltham, Mass.

Nickels-Sortwell House, Wiscasset, Maine

Roseland Cottage, Woodstock, Conn.