Embark on a magical illuminated trail...

Lighting up Manchester this winter and throughout the festive season, Lightopia 2020 will see new installations unveiled and a brand-new route for guests to explore. Explore the kaleidoscopic colours of the lantern festival, take in the spectacular light installations and wander the iridescent pathway of our magical illuminated trail. The new route has been designed to create a safe environment, where Lightopians are able to see the sights safely with friends and family, including wider footpaths to maintain social distancing.

Woodland Fairytale

Children will be full of excitement as they enter the fairytale world of candy, flowers and characters at the Woodland Fairytale area. We have added new captivating pieces featured in this illuminated wonderland.


Take a journey of discovery. With over 50 giant hand-sculpted lanterns, who knows what you’ll find? The much-loved installations from 2019 are returning for 2020 in the Discovery space. 

Food court

As you approach the Grade I listed Heaton Hall, we invite Lightopians embarking on our trail to stop off and refuel at our food court. But there’s a catch… you must walk through a column of dragons to enter! It will be worth it, we promise.

Christmas showcase

Our brand new Christmas showcase uses the Grade I-listed Heaton Hall as its sparkling backdrop. Enjoy the most wonderful time of the year at Lightopia, as you pass by Santa’s sleigh, glistening snowflakes and make your own festive soundtrack with a giant interactive walking piano.

Musical city

Dance your way through the lights and get stuck into the sonic sensation of our Musical City. Lose yourself in light as the soundtrack transforms this outdoor nightclub experience. Don’t worry about the door policy – all ages are welcome!


Gaze in wonder at the planets of our Astronomy Zone. Our Astronomy display will illuminate the night sky with its beautiful moon installation, other pieces include robotic controlled pads on the floor and an interactive Zodiac Sign installation.


Lightopia Festival offers a host of intricately designed Animal installations, exploring the beauty of nature and incorporating technology to bring them to life and interact with Lightopians!

Local heroes

Join us to celebrate the heartbeat of Manchester – our Local Heroes. We pay tribute to our incredible key workers with a series of specially commissioned installations.  


The Lakeside water show is the pinnacle of the trail as a state-of-the-art projection creates a visual masterpiece, bringing the story of Lightopia to life.