Holiday Traditions


A short drive from Santee, you’ll find Point Loma’s Garrison Street. There’s also Candy Cane Lane in Poway and the Belardo Lights of Tierrasanta. The San Diego area is rich with neighborhoods that go all out for the holidays. Houses compete with one another for the most lavish decorations and who can string the most lights, which results in a fantastic month of holiday cheer. Grab a thermos of hot cocoa and stroll these famous streets for some of the best photo opportunities and memories of the season.

The La Jolla Christmas Parade is one of the biggest in the region with more than 25,000 attendees every year. Scheduled for December 3 at 1:30 p.m., there are already more than 100 entries that include equestrians, bands, troops and of course beauty queens riding in vintage cars. It starts at Girard Avenue and heads all the way to the beach. Arrive early for the best spots.

The Holidays are a Beach

The San Diego Bay Parade of Lights happens twice this year, on December 10 and 17. Head to the bay and see boats decked out in holiday magic with elaborate displays. There are more than 80 boats participating in this annual event taking place at the Port of San Diego, and a parade from Shelter Island to Ferry Landing ends in the best boat getting a Star Clipper Cruise. The event starts at 5 p.m.

The Balboa Park December Nights brings together holiday displays, international food, carolers and incredible theatrical performances. Pick up holiday gifts and take a selfie with Santa. It happens the first Friday and Saturday of December, with free museum entry on those two nights. Everything is complimentary (excepting food, of course), from the live music to the educational exhibits.