Visitors’ Guide to the Holidays in San Diego

There’s just no beating the yuletide season in ”America’s Finest City.” Our famously mild weather is even more agreeable, the nights are long and cool, and there’s always so much to discover. Looking for great ways to spend your time during your Holidays in San Diego? Here are our picks for some of the best.

SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration (Nov 14 – Jan. 8)

(Photo: @seaworldsandiego)

SeaWorld San Diego has thrilled generations of marine life enthusiasts for nearly six decades. The park truly comes alive during the holidays! The SeaWorld Christmas Celebration takes place from November 14 – January 8 this season, and features a host of holiday-themed shows, events, gifts, souvenirs and other surprises. Guests are invited to sip cozy cups of hot cocoa as they visit all of their favorite animals throughout the seasonally decorated grounds. 

500 SeaWorld Dr, San Diego, CA 92109 


LEGOLand Holiday Celebration (Nov. 19 – Jan 8)

Legoland Holiday Celebration in California

(Photo: @legolandcalifornia)

LEGOLand California has built a spectacular seasonal celebration brick by brick to delight the whole family. Holiday-themed characters, events, live shows, and décor will bring the cheer all month long. Make sure to get a family picture in front of the two-story-plus LEGO Christmas tree, complete with lights and more than 400 hand-built LEGO ornaments. Word has it Santa will also be putting in an appearance, so keep a lookout! 

One Legoland Dr, Carlsbad, CA 92008


Liberty Station Holiday Events (Beginning Nov. 25)

(Photo: @libertystation)

There’s always something happening at Liberty Station, but San Diego’s favorite public market truly comes alive during the holidays. From the traditional annual tree lighting, to a Nutcracker Tea with the San Diego Ballet, to a Hanukkah celebration, kids ice-skating events and much more, there’s truly something for everyone. Not to mention that anyone who has visited Liberty Station knows they’ll find something for everyone on their shopping list at one of the unique shops.  

2820 Historic Decatur Rd, San Diego CA, 92106


December Nights at Balboa Park (Dec. 2 – 3)

(Photo: @balboapark)

December Nights — the city’s largest free holiday festival — is back for 2022 with a joyous celebration at beautiful Balboa Park. Participants are invited to take in the beauty of a decidedly decked-out park space cheerfully decorated with holiday finery, complete with food, a vendor park, live entertainment, and more. It’s yuletide fun for the whole family!

1549 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101


Ocean Beach Holiday Parade (Dec. 3) 


When most think of a holly jolly Christmas parade, sunny Southern California isn’t usually the first place that springs to mind. Yet one of the most unique holiday parades in the country happens in one of our nearby beach communities every year. Ocean Beach’s Newport Avenue puts on a display for the ages each holiday, complete with floats, marching bands, local dignitaries, a car show, and the famous crooked tree. 

Newport Ave, San Diego, CA 92107


52nd Annual Bay Parade of Lights (Dec. 11 & 18)

(Photo: @sdparadeoflights)

The Bay Parade of Lights is a uniquely San Diego tradition, returning for its 52nd year in 2022. Area boating enthusiasts deck out their dinghies and give their yachts a yuletide makeover, then cruise past the shore in a brilliantly beautiful show of seasonal splendor. This time-honored festival will bring more than 80 boats to the waters off of San Diego, all lavishly decorated to dovetail with this year’s theme: “FantaSEA on the Bay.” More than 100,000 residents are expected to enjoy the brilliantly-bright parade this year. As a bonus, Humphrey’s is a great vantage point from which to take in the festivities, since the parade begins at Shelter Island!


Holiday Ice Skating

(Photo: @ashley.g.berg)

What better way to enjoy the holidays than with a graceful glide across the ice? While ice skating may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about San Diego, rest assured — it should be on the list! Despite our mild weather, the metro has lots of places where skaters can slip on their skates. Among them: 

  • Hotel del Coronado: our friends at this Coronado Island lodge host a rink overlooking the ocean every year.
  • Viejas Casino: you’ll find SoCal’s largest outdoor ice rink here every holiday season. 
  • Poway Community Park: Poway’s Winter Festival always features an outdoor rink ideal for a holiday skate.
  • San Diego Ice Arena: this fantastic facility is open year-round, and also hosts lessons, hockey and more. 


The Best San Diego Holiday Stays Start at Humphreys

Planning a San Diego holiday escape? We’d love to be your choice for accommodations. Humphreys Half Moon Inn is a charming waterfront Shelter Island getaway with a tropical flair, excellent amenities, and stellar service. Feel free to take a look at our Special Offers page, select the travel deal that’s right for you, and let us be your home away from home for the holidays!