Families in the region who are looking for an exciting new holiday tradition need look no further than Christmas on the Potomac at the Gaylord National Resort in National Harbor, Md.

It is an experience like none other.

We’ve attended Christmas on the Potomac twice (2010 and 2011) and both times our family has been left practically speechless. I’m a  parent of tween boys and trust me when I say that it is getting harder each year to find outings that the whole family can enjoy. That being said, I’m not exaggerating when I say that my kids never want to leave the Gaylord National. (Neither do their parents, truth be told)

But this year, our visit was definitely over the top:

Gaylord has teamed up with Dreamworks to offer “Merry Madagascar,” a two-night one-of-a-kind Dreamworks character vacation. Kids (and adults!) get the opportunity to rub elbows with Po, Shrek, Alex, King Julien and other Dreamworks characters during character breakfasts, scavenger hunts, and wake up calls, ice skating and more.

Have I mentioned ICE! yet? ICE! is a separate interactive indoor wonderland created entirely out of clear, white and colored ice. ICE! continues on with the Dreamworks theame featuring 10 scenes from “Merry Madagascar.” Best part? The two-story ice slide that both kids and adults can enjoy, as well as a sparkling nativity scene made entirely of crystal clear ice. The structure took 40 Chinese artisans 30 days to carve the two million pounds of ice needed for the holiday spectacular. “ICE!” is open daily through Jan. 8, including holidays.

Coupled with Gaylord’s  already extravagant Christmas on the Potomac activities, which include indoor snowfall, simulated Northern Lights and a 7,000-pound Tree of Light, there can be no doubt that it is a magical experience. I highly, highly recommend it!

If you would like more information on the Dreamworks Experience at Gaylord National, ICE! or Christmas on the Potomac, please consult Gaylord National’s website or call (301) 965-4000.

FTC Disclosure: I attended the opening weekend of Christmas on the Potomac as a member of the press for Want2Dish.com. I was not asked to share my experience nor was I compensated in any way for this post. All opinions, videos and photos are my own.