Enjoy the Outdoors
San Diego in December is a magical place. If you love surfing, hiking, or just being active outdoors, you can still enjoy the beautiful landscape and scenery of the city, despite the chillier weather.
Top Events happening in San Diego In December:
Surf Big Waves
The time of year has come that all San Diego surfers wait for. The big waves are finally in, crashing on the west coast. You can ride a variety of different waves along San Diego’s 70 miles of coastline. Follow the winds to find what waves are breaking where on any given day. Check out this list of surf spots in San Diego for more information on where to go to find your perfect wave this winter.
Torrey Pines State Park or East County Trailheads
The wintertime is the best time of the year to take on San Diego’s numerous hiking trails. The cooler conditions and recent rainfall make it the perfect time of year to get outdoors and explore nature. Some of my favorite hikes in San Diego include Three Sisters Waterfall, Cedar Creek Waterfall, Iron Mountain and Torrey Pines State Park.
Check Out a Film or Exhibition at Balboa Park
Balboa Park has a lot going on at all times. Visit a science exhibition like Galileo: Space Visionary, or watch the extraordinary film “Turtle Odyssey.” You can check out different events happening on their calendar.
Ice Skate by the Beach
Nov. 17- Jan. 1st
Hotel Del Coronado
Skating by the Sea is back at the beautiful Hotel del Coronado. Enjoy the stunning views of the Pacific Ocean you as you skate. The Hotel’s iconic victorian building gets adorned with twinkling lights and there is hot chocolate available to warm you up. If you are looking for a magical winter wonderland here in San Diego this season, this is a must-do!
Parade of Lights
Dec 11 & 18
San Diego Bay
The San Diego Bay Parade of Lights takes advantage of the waterfront location that makes San Diego famous. Watch the boats sail across the bay as the lights reflect off the water and shine for the entire pier to see. This event is a time-honored holiday tradition brought to San Diego by the boating community.
Holiday Bowl Parade
Every year, people in San Diego and across the U.S. look forward to watching this event. It is America’s Largest Balloon Parade. It has everything a parade needs to be an exciting spectacle: world-class marching bands, magnificent floats, entertaining drill teams and a procession of enormous balloons. Over 100,000 street-side viewers attend this parade annually and street-side viewing of the parade is FREE! Go watch this festive event that is something you can only experience in San Diego!
Go Whale Watching
Whales appear in San Diego from December until April, making it the perfect time to experience and photograph these enormous creatures.
Weekly Local Events in San Diego:
Tuesdays: Pacific Beach Farmers Market
Wednesdays: Ocean Beach Farmers Market and Drum Circles
Saturdays: Little Italy Farmers Market
Sundays: Hillcrest Farmers Market
Everyday – Locals Ride Free – San Diego Trolley Tours
San Diego is a great destination year-round. Many other extraordinary events are happening and listed on the San Diego Events website.
For info on the live music scene, the San Diego Reader has a great list of upcoming shows.
If you have any questions about other events happening in San Diego, please contact our receptionist at any of our local hostels.
Become ITH Community Rewards Member and save money!