Dickens on The Strand

Step back to Victorian-era times during this visitor's favorite event in Galveston, Texas.

Dickens on The Strand is Galveston’s annual holiday street festival bursting with live entertainment on multiple streets, including strolling carolers, roving musicians, bagpipers, jugglers, and a crowd of entertainers and costumed revelers.

Date(s): December 1-3, 2023

A woman dressed as a queen sits in a carriage holding roses during the Dickens on the Strand Galveston parade.

How do I get to the festival?

Galveston is located approximately 45 minutes south of Houston. Take I-45 south for approximately 50 miles. After you cross the causeway linking the mainland to Galveston, I-45 will become Broadway, and the cross streets will be numbered in decreasing order. To reach the Strand National Historic Landmark District, the site of Dickens on The Strand, turn left onto any of the streets designated 24th Street [Mitchell], 22nd Street [Kempner] or 21st Street [Moody]. (Left turns are not allowed in either direction onto 23rd Street [Tremont]). After making this turn, you will be heading in a northerly direction toward Galveston Bay. These streets all intersect Mechanic Street at the perimeter of the festival site. A Dickens on The Strand map will be posted closer to the event.

Where do I park?

Parking is available via paid street parking all around the festival grounds. Additionally, there are numerous parking garages available for use. Two of those are located at 21st and Market and another at 25th and Harborside. Handicap parking is reserved between 22nd and 23rd on Market and between Strand and Mechanic on 20th street.

What is NOT allowed at the festival?

Pets and ice chests are not allowed. Scooters, skateboards, rollerblades, skates, Segways, and other recreational “wheels” are forbidden. Guests bringing in costume weapons and props must have them secured and will be asked to go through additional screening.

About Dickens on The Strand

For 50 years, Galveston’s world-famous Victorian holiday festival has been held in The Strand, a National Historic Landmark District.

With a nod to the ghost of Dickens's past and an eye toward the future, Galveston’s world-famous Victorian holiday festival is the island's premier holiday festival. The annual holiday street festival, based on 19th-century Victorian London, features parades, non-stop entertainment on several stages, strolling carolers, roving musicians, bagpipers, jugglers and a host of other entertainers. Costumed vendors peddle their wares from street stalls and rolling carts laden with holiday food and drink, Victorian-inspired crafts, clothing, jewelry, holiday decorations and gift items.

The festival weekend also hosts a multitude of spirited events:

  • The crowd favorite Whimsical Whisker Revue
  • A facial hair contest for the bearded and the dandy
  • The Dickens Victorian Bed Races
  • Victorian Costume Contest
  • Daily parades
Dickens on the Strand Galveston parade
Annual Events
Dickens on The Strand

For one weekend in December, Galveston’s Strand Historic District is transported to 19th-century Victorian London in a three-day celebration of the sights and sounds of English novelist Charles Dickens’ work.

Dickens on the Strand parade costumes
Annual Events
Costumes Encouraged

First-time guests and returning visitors alike dress up in their Dickensian finest (or raggedy threads for a real pauper) and take to the streets to shop, eat, party, parade, and celebrate this holiday tradition.

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Upcoming Events

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This event is currently underway.
This event is currently underway.

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