Nothing says "Christmas in Los Gatos" like the traditional horse-drawn carriage rides sponsored by the that begin Friday evening in downtown.
From 7-9:30 p.m., after the traditional Christmas tree lighting ceremony at Town Plaza Park, elegant carriages will be seen strolling slowly in the cool evening through the Almond Grove District and North Santa Cruz Avenue.
The 15-minute ride takes passengers by some of the town's most beautiful historic homes and along the downtown's commercial business district, which is all decked out for the holidays.
Riders board the carriages at the southwest corner of Town Plaza Park and a ride coordinator at a carriage ride booth will assist them into their carriage.
Organizers recommend those participating dress warm. No pets will be allowed and the rides will run rain or shine.
The rides continue 5-9:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3; 5-9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Dec. 9-10; and 5-9:30 p.m. Dec. 15-23.
Probably the most endearing part of the rides is the sound made by bells hanging around horses' necks as the carriages move along the route.
"The tinkling of the bells as carriages ride through town brings a festive spirit that's unmatched in the Bay Area," says the chamber's page dedicated to the rides.
The rides are not free. A group package costs $80 and includes six seats, four adults maximum.
The "sweetheart carriage" is $75 and includes a romantic ride for two adults.
Individual tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for children ages 3-10, and toddlers 3 and under are free and must sit on adult's lap.
To make reservations, please click here.