I love our Mediterranean climate in San Diego. Our winters are mild, so you can go ice skating on the beach, enjoy a sunny day in Balboa Park, or enjoy more traditional holiday activities.
For other San Diego, Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar, La Jolla, and Coronado events and activities in Southern California during November and December, see San Diego Events November and San Diego Events December.
Lightscape at San Diego Botanic GardenBotanic Garden Lightscape - November 17 - 19, 22, 24 - 26, and 29 - 30; December 1 - 3, 6 - 10, 13 - 23, and 26 - 31, and January 1 from 5:00 – 10 PM at San Diego Botanic Garden (formerly Quail Botanic Gardens) in Encinitas. Back for the second year following many sold out nights in 2022. Spectacular garden light show featuring the international Lightscape exhibition. Enjoy a one mile evening walk through the lighted garden filled with beautiful displays of light, including the "cathedral" of lights, a laser garden, neon trees, lantern trees and more. This is a special ticketed event with entry times every 15 minutes. Reservations required. For more information see www.sdbg.org.
Balboa Park December Nights - Friday and Saturday December 1 and 2, 2023 at Balboa Park. Fun, food and lights. Don't miss out on one of the best San Diego events. For more information see www.sandiego.gov/december-nights
Sawdust Winter Fantasy - November 18 - 19, 24 - 26, December 2 - 3, 9 - 10, 15 - 17 2023 from 10 AM to 7 PM in Laguna Beach. Laguna Beach is known for its local art, and you can enjoy the fun and shop for handcrafted gifts at this holiday festival featuring work from 180 artists. Enjoy the live music, eat some food, take an art class or get your photo with Santa. sawdustartfestival.org.
Balboa Island Christmas - Not too far from Laguna Beach is Balboa Island, which shows off its Christmas spirit with holiday decorations in December. Stop by and enjoy the shops and walk around town and the boardwalk. In the evening enjoy a stroll and admire the Christmas decor in the Ring of Lights Competition, or enjoy the view from a holiday lights cruise.
Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! - date Nov. 8 to Dec. 31, 2023 at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego Balboa Park. Christmas activities wouldn't be the same without the Grinch. Shows at various times, and some shows may be adults only. Get your San Diego Grinch Tickets at www.theoldglobe.org
A Very Furry Christmas - November 10 to December 31, 2023 at the new Sesame Place San Diego theme park in Chula Vista. A family-friendly celebration with your favorite Sesame Street characters. Sesame Place San Diego
Encinitas Holiday Parade - December 2 2023 starting at 5 PM in downtown Encinitas Cal. Holiday parade and tree lighting ceremony in historic Encinitas. Tree Lighting Ceremony at 5:00 pm in the Lumberyard shopping center courtyard on Coast Highway 101. The Parade begins at 5:30, heading south along Coast Highway 101 from D Street to J Street. encinitasparksandrec.com
La Jolla Christmas Parade and Holiday Festival - Sunday December 3 2023. Join in the holiday fun with horses, floats and antique planes fly over earlier in the day, with the La Jolla San Diego parade starting at 1:30 pm in downtown La Jolla at Kline & Gerard. After the parade is a festival with crafts, games, fun and food, and Santa. The tree lighting begins around 4:30. www.ljparade.com
Disneyland Christmas - November 10 2023 - January 7 2024. Disneyland Christmas holiday time at the happiest place on earth. Take your loved ones on a Disneyland Christmas holiday vacation. Disneyland Christmas
Legoland Holiday - mid November 2023 to early January 2024. Enjoy a trip to Legoland and see a holiday tree and some snow. Legoland California
Cut Your Christmas Tree - No list of Christmas activities would be complete without the holiday tradition of cutting your own Christmas tree from a local farm in San Diego. For a list of farms or lots see www.cachristmas.com
Julian Christmas Tree Lighting - Saturday after Thanksgiving (Nov. 25 2023) at Julian’s Pioneer Park. Festivities to open the Christmas season begin at 4 PM, and the tree lighting at 6 PM in the charming historic town of Julian. Christmas carols, Santa. Free admission for this Christmas event. For more information about the Julian Living Christmas Tree see visitjulian.com
Gaslamp Quarter Holiday Pet Parade - December 16, 2023. Dress up your pet (and you!) in a holiday costume and join the parade. Enjoy a beer afterwards in the GasLamp. See Gaslamp Holiday Pet Parade details at gaslamp.org
Big Bay Balloon Parade - December 27 2023 starting at 3 PM in downtown San Diego CA. The Port of San Diego brings this televised exciting family event full of marching bands, magnificent floats, drill teams and enormous balloons. Family Festival activities afterwards at the Broadway Pier. For more information, or to pre-order your Grandstand tickets for preferred seating at the San Diego Big Bay Balloon Parade, see www.holidaybowl.com.
San Diego Bay Parade of Lights - Sunday December 10 and 17 2023 from 5 PM. The parade of decorated boats starts at southwest end of Shelter Island, and travels past Harbor Island, the Embarcadero, Seaport Village, Coronado Ferry Landing Marketplace before ending at the navy carrier turning basin. www.sdparadeoflights.org.
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Featuring events in San Diego and the beach towns of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Leucadia, Encinitas, Cardiff, Solana Beach, Del Mar, La Jolla, Coronado, Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, Mission Beach and Imperial Beach California.
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