I love the holiday season. There’s just something about chilly nights and lights that make me adore this time of year.

In San Diego, we’ve been experiencing the dual reality of sun-filled days and nippy nights. Despite the lack of snow or even rain and cold most days, there are plenty of festive ways to spend the holidays in SD. Here’s how I have spent mine: 

December Nights at Balboa Park

Victoria and I have been trying to attend December Nights together for years. The first time we started driving over, we got caught in traffic on the 163 and by the time we finally made it to the exit… the Jeep started steaming and broke down, leaving us stranded, waiting for her family and AAA to arrive. We did not make it that year. In the succession of years thereafter, either she was out of town or I was.

FINALLY, in 2015, we made it!

We got some free stuff and danced to some great music with Amy and Kyla.

Holiday parties

Despite never winning any of the amazing, expensive prizes they raffle off at holiday parties, it’s always great getting dolled up, eating good food and dancing with great company. Also a plus: seeing higher-ups gettin’ cray on the dance floor.

Holiday Wonderland at Petco Park

This was my first year hearing about this event, and my mom desperately wanted to check it out. They had fake snow and snowflakes blowing out of foam machines, and lots of activities that were included in the price of admission, if you wanted to wait for them (ferris wheel, batting cage, fake snow)… Mom, Amy, and I went snow tubing and each spun around, ending up backward at the bottom of the snow hill!

DELights at the Hotel del Coronado

Amy and I were hanging out with our cousin, Audrey, and decided to visit the Hotel Del. My phone died, so I don’t have many photos, but there were lights strung up around the hotel, an outdoor skating rink, and in the middle of the Garden Patio, an odd 30-foot structure was erected (resembling an icicle, Christmas tree, or a flame depending on the light display). It’s nice to visit, but only if you’re in the area.

In the past, I’ve also visited:

Starlight Circle in Santee

Loads of houses in the neighborhood agree to decorate every year, with different lights and themes. People also sell warm beverages and snacks along the way. You can choose to either walk or drive through.

Festival of Lights at The Mission Inn (Riverside)

A couple years ago, we drove up to Riverside to see the Festival of Lights. The entire hotel is decorated extravagantly, and there are plenty of photo opps.

I don’t know if I believe in Christ, but I sure believe in Christina. So Happy Christinamas and a Merry New Year!


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UC San Diego grad with a double major in Economics and International Business. I was born and raised in sunny San Diego, but I love to travel (and eat) around the world.

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