Visit Winston-Salem

Historic holidays in Winston-Salem are filled with the spirit of nostalgia, the warmth of hearth cooking, the twilight of candlelight tours and the excitement of holiday celebrations. Delight in the sights and sounds that come along with the holidays in Winston-Salem. Book a holiday getaway package and discover the cherished traditions that have been passed down for more than 250 years.

  • Holidays are often times synonymous with cookies and in Winston-Salem there’s no exception. A longtime holiday tradition, the Moravian cookie is considered to be the holiday staple of Winston-Salem. Rightfully so since we are the epicenter for the Moravian cookie, baking more than a million pounds of dough each year! Some hardcore culinarians might say that making the Moravian cookie is one of Salem’s greatest accomplishments, garnering worldwide fame and affection (Oprah has named them among "her favorites".) The following stops are places in Winston-Salem where you can taste and take as many cookies as your heart desires.

  • WINKLER BAKERY IN OLD SALEM MUSEUMS & GARDENS: In their earliest cooking chronicles and true to German heritage, the Moravians referred to the cookies as "cakes," traditionally baked as treats for family and friends during the Christmas holidays. Built in 1800, Winkler Bakery is America’s oldest continually operating bakery and one of the earliest sites of Moravian cookie baking. Find an array of flavors including ginger – the traditional flavor, sugar and chocolate. LEARN MORE »

  • MRS. HANES' MORAVIAN COOKIES: Nestled in the rolling hills of Clemmons, a suburb of Winston-Salem, Mrs. Hanes' Moravian Cookies is the only bakery in the country, quite possibly the only in the world, still hand-rolling, hand-cutting, and hand-packing 110,000 pounds of Moravian cookie dough annually. A visit to the bakery offers a view of their “artists in aprons” in action. Choose from six flavors: sugar, lemon, black walnut, chocolate, butterscotch and traditional Moravian ginger. Oprah Winfrey named this delicacy one of her “favorites” in 2008. LEARN MORE »

  • DEWEY'S BAKERY: A Winston-Salem original since 1930, Dewey’s Bakery is a household name, especially during the holiday seasons. Throughout the year, Dewey’s Bakery locations in Winston-Salem are filled with a bevy of confections and cookies. Then, in November and December, like elves, additional Dewey’s locations open across North Carolina, offering an array of Moravian cookies, sugar cakes and oh yes, cheese straws. LEARN MORE »

  • SALEM BAKING COMPANY: Though not a physical stop on the Moravian Cookie Trail, Salem Baking Company, parent company of Dewey’s Bakery, is the mastermind of the innovative cookie pairings that use Moravian cookies as the base for cookie pairings – yes, cookies are the new crackers here. Their online pairing recipes make it easy for you to replicate the robust flavor combinations at your next holiday soiree. For pairings and other cookie-inspired recipes, visit their website at LEARN MORE »

  • When in Winston-Salem, you’re home for the holidays. In the historic district of Old Salem, take a step back in time to the 18th and 19th centuries in historic Old Salem and experience Christmas traditions brought by the Moravians. Flash forward to the Roaring 20s era and sing Christmas Carols to the tunes of the Aeolian organ and capture the essence of holiday glamour of at the historic home of tobacco baron R.J. Reynolds and family. Marvel at international décor at Graylyn Estate before exploring the Victorian influence on each of the seven levels of Körner's Folly, the "Strangest Home in America."

    Every historic home is a holiday treasure and while there is no right or wrong in where you start, we’ve organized our historic holiday homes tour in chronological order beginning with where the first wreath hung.

  • HISTORIC BETHABARA PARK: Winston-Salem's earliest Moravian settlement invites visitors this holiday season into its restored and reconstructed homes built in the mid-18th century. The Moravians, a German-speaking religious group, settled the area in 1753, calling it the Wachovia Tract (where Wachovia Bank, now Wells Fargo, got its name). Venture into the 1788 Gemeinhaus adorned with traditional greenery and beeswax candles – a symbol of Moravian Christmas. Gemeinhaus is the last 18th century German church with attached living quarters remaining in the U.S. A number of holiday events are hosted here including a Christmas Lovefeast and "Carols by Candlelight". Find more information listed under Seasonal Events.
    Must-Do Holiday Event: Christmas in Bethabara

    2147 Bethabara Road
    Winston-Salem, NC 27106

    $4/adults, $1/children

    Tuesday-Friday 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. (April to mid-December); closed Mondays. Grounds, gardens and trails open year-round.

  • OLD SALEM MUSEUMS & GARDENS: Settled in 1766, strolling the cobblestone sidewalks of Old Salem is like walking through a Dickens novel. Hand-dipped beeswax candles adorned with simple red ribbon glow in every window seal of this historic district adjacent to downtown Winston-Salem. The aroma of hearthside cooking fills the air and costumed interpreters greet you at the doorstep with enchanting stories of Moravian Christmas pyramids, what many scholars believe to be "the first American Christmas tree." LEARN MORE »


    900 Old Salem Road
    Winston-Salem, NC 27101
    336-721-7350 or 888-653-7253

    Holiday Admission (November 8 - January 2)
    All-in-One Ticket, Tuesday-Saturday, $35/adults, $16/children (ages 4-18)
    All-in-One Ticket, Sunday, $22/adults, $11/children (ages 4-18)
    Other ticketing options available online.

    Tuesday-Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 4:30 p.m.; closed Mondays

  • KÖRNER’S FOLLY: Built in 1880 by architect and interior designer, Jule Körner, the folly was not only the home for he and his family, but a showroom displaying his impeccable talents. Located just 15 minutes from downtown Winston-Salem, Körner’s Folly has been an enchanted holiday destination for 135 years. Named "the Strangest Home in America," its 22 peculiar rooms are lavishly decorated to reflect the Victorian era with floor-to-ceiling garlands, glowing lights and beautifully decorated Christmas trees in every room. That's more than a dozen trees in one house across three floors and seven levels! Special tours are offered until one hour prior to closing. While visiting Körner’s Folly, have a laugh at their family-friendly Christmas Puppet Shows in the children's theatre and shop holiday gifts in the visitor center located behind the Folly.
    Must-Do Holiday Event: Candle Tea
    413 S. Main Street
    Kernersville, NC 27284

    $10/adults, $6/children (6-18), children under 6 free

    Wednesdays – Saturdays: 10am – 5pm; Sundays: 1-5pm
    The last tour tickets are sold one hour prior to closing each day (4pm)

  • REYNOLDA HOUSE MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART: Glamour and style are evident during Reynolda House’s "A 1917 Christmas" celebration. This historic home of R.J. and Katharine Reynolds, (R.J. was the founder of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.) is today on of the premier American Art museums of the Southeast. Each holiday season the home shines especially bright; garnished with nandina berries (Katharine's preference over mistletoe), a Southern touch of magnolia leaves and Christmas trees in nearly every room. This country estate-turned-art museum is situated along the "Reynolda Mile" just ten minutes outside of downtown Winston-Salem. Hear the sounds of the original Aeolian organ and discover what life was like for elite families such as the Reynolds during the Roaring 20s era. Costumes, toys and wardrobes are on display in the home's attic and Katharine’s finest china from Tiffany and Co. is also showcased during the holidays. LEARN MORE »
    2250 Reynolda Road
    Winston-Salem, NC 27106

    $14/adults, children ages 18 and under free

    Tuesday-Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Sunday 1:30 to 4:30 p.m.;
    closed Mondays and the month of January. Garden is open during daylight hours year-round.

  • GRAYLYN ESTATE: Completed in 1932, Graylyn Estate is a showcase of traditional holiday décor tied into the home's Norman revival-style architecture. This historic home-turned-hotel is located along the enchanting Reynolda Mile. Guests and visitors of Graylyn marvel at its international décor and exceptional butler service. This 55-acre estate is the former home to Bowman Gray, once president of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, and his wife, Nathalie Lyons Gray. Take a butler tour to find the seven lavishly decorated trees each individually themed to display the history and traditions of the Gray family. LEARN MORE »
    1900 Reynolda Road
    Winston-Salem, NC 27106

    Check online for tour dates, prices and accommodation rates.

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