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San Diego Holiday Events & Specials That Bring Joy This Season

Get into the spirit of the season with exciting holiday events in San Diego. Make memories with friends and family at exciting festivals and parades, enjoy live performances and smile at the Christmas light displays. Enjoy special Thanksgiving dinners, New Year's Eve celebrations and shopping for under the tree.With our latest hotel specials, spending the holidays at Best Western Plus Island Palms will be truly unforgettable.

San Diego Holiday Events

  • Fantasy on Ice

    Located just 5 minutes away, this seasonal outdoor ice skating rink provides entertainment for all while benefiting Rady's Children's Hospital.
    • Date: Daily from November 17, 2016 through January 2017
    • Location/Address: NTC Liberty Station Command Center at 2875 Dewey Rd, San Diego, CA 92106
       
  • Balboa Park December Nights

    A San Diego Tradition!  This two-day event is full of music, dancing, food, crafts, and other multicultural activities.  It's a great way to kick off your holiday celebrating.
    • Date: Friday, December 2, 2016 from 3-11pm and Saturday, December 3, 2016 from noon-11pm
    • Location/Address: Balboa Park, San Diego, CA
       
  • Ocean Beach Christmas Parade

    For over 30 years, this community holiday parade, less than ten minutes away, has been a local favorite.  This seaside community's parade features classic Woodies and Santa decked out in beachwear.  Would you expect anything else?
    • Date: Saturday, December 3, 2016
    • Location/Address: Newport Avenue, Ocean Beach, San Diego 92107
       
  • San Diego Bay Parade of Lights

    In its 45th year, this boat parade is a can't-miss event.  Bundle up, grab some hot chocolate or other libation, and find a perch along San Diego's beautiful Big Bay.  Boats of every shape and size in this sailing parade will be decorated in brilliant holiday lights.   This year's theme is "It Begins with a Roar" to honor the San Diego Zoo's 100th anniversary.

The Grinch at Old Globe Theatre

Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas is a long-running holiday favorite.  This classic tale is brought to life with unique costumes, whimsical music, and holiday magic.  A must-see for every family.
  • Date: Saturday, November 5 - Monday, December 26, 2016
  • Location/Address: Old Globe Theater, Balboa Park. 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego, CA 92101
     
  • Old Town San Diego Holiday in the Park

    Join carolers at Old Town Historic Park for music, entertainment, bonfires, special holiday treats, and extended shopping hours.  
    • Date: Saturdays in December
    • Location/Address: Old Town San Diego, 4002 Wallace Street, San Diego, CA 92110
       
  • SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration

    Each year, SeaWorld transforms into a charming holiday land filled with fun for all ages.  Visit Santa at his workshop, meet his reindeer, watch holiday-themed shows, or have breakfast with Santa and Shamu!  
    • Date: Saturday, November 19, 2016 - Sunday, January 1, 2017
    • Location/Address: SeaWorld San Diego. 500 SeaWorld Drive, San Diego, CA 92109
       
  • San Diego Zoo's Jungle Bells

    The Zoo's annual holiday celebration is back!  Experience a winter wonderland full of lighted animal sculptures, music, holiday treats, and special visits from St. Nick.
    • Date: Friday, December 9, 2016 - Monday, January 2, 2017
    • Location/Address: San Diego Zoo, 2920 Zoo Dr. San Diego, CA 92101
       
  • San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl

    Are you ready for some (college) football?  Grab your team jerseys and head to Qualcomm Stadium in Mission Valley for some entertaining gridiron action.  
    • Date: Wednesday, December 21, 2016
    • Location/Address: Qualcomm Stadium, 9449 Friars Rd, San Diego, CA 92108
       
  • Port of San Diego Holiday Bowl Parade 

    The Holiday Bowl wouldn't be the same without the pre-game parade!  Enjoy America's largest balloon parade set in downtown San Diego with the beautiful Big Bay as a backdrop.  Enjoy college bands, dancing, merriment, and of course the balloons!
    • Date:  Tuesday, December 27, 2016, 10 am
    • Location/Address: Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101
       
  • Holiday Bowl

    Get set to watch two of the best teams from the Big Ten and Pac-12 face off in America's Finest City.  Fans can also enjoy the ultimate pre-game party at the National Funding Fan Zone. 
    • Date: Tuesday, December 27, 2016
    • Location/Address: Qualcomm Stadium, 9449 Friars Rd, San Diego, CA 92108

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