Surfing Santa. Ice Skating. Tons of Snow. We have many special holiday offerings throughout California’s Central Coast.
Here are a few:
Downtown Ventura offers several opportunities for holiday cheer:
The world’s largest Wine Walk can only be experienced here on Dec. 2, 2017.
Take a walk through a forest of trees in Downtown Ventura between Dec. 8, 2017 and Jan. 2, 2018.
Ventura Harbor’s 41st Annual Holiday Parade of Lights happens Dec. 15-16, 2017.
Oxnard rings in the holiday season with a Tree Lighting on Dec. 1, a Christmas Parade on Dec. 2 in conjunction with the Oxnard Tamale Festival. Don’t miss the annual Parade of Lights in Channel Islands on Dec. 9 – it’s a crowd favorite.
A special family outing can be found in Camarillo with Cavalia Odysseo – an artistic equestrian and theatrical production. It opens Nov. 11, 2017 through Jan. 7, 2018.
Holiday-themed activities and crafts are inside Camarillo Ranch, decked with elegant lighting and Victorian Christmas décor, including festive trees in each room of this gorgeous 1892 Victorian mansion. Santa & Mrs. Clause will be there on Dec. 6 for photos. Come see Santa’s Workshop and warm up with hot cocoa.
Conejo Valley / Thousand Oaks
Ice skate, that’s right…ice skate at the Holiday Ice Rink at The Lakes at Thousand Oaks in Dec. 2017 and Jan. 2018.
A holiday classic, The Nutcracker, runs on Dec. 16 and 17, 2017 at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.
SANTA BARBARA REGION
This well-known Danish-inspired town celebrates Julefest, starting with a Tree Lighting Ceremony, photos with Santa, and entertainment on Dec. 1. A Julefest Parade takes place on Dec. 2.
Sit outdoors on the evening of Dec. 9 and enjoy the Nativity Pageant at the Solvang Festival Theater.
On Dec 9 and 10, 2017, check out Solvang’s Julefest Wine & Beer Walk “Skål Stroll!” Passport, featuring over a dozen wine and beer tasting rooms offering samplings ($45 per person; 21 years or older).
View seasonal décor throughout Solvang and Santa Ynez Valley on Dec. 11 and 12 on the Holiday Lights & Sights Trolley Tour ($13 per person in advance; call 805.688.7529).
The popular Los Olivos Olde Fashioned Christmas on Dec. 2, provides a festive start to the Holiday Season with small-town charm! From a Gingerbread Wonderland, Santa visits and train rides to live Christmas music, shopping and a Tree Lighting, there is something festive for everyone at this annual Holiday Party in downtown Los Olivos.
A signature community event, the 23rd Annual Santa Maria Christmas Parade of Lights takes place on Dec. 2, 2017. The town gathers to view this festive parade of lights with floats, sleighs, and Santa hats.
Buellton’s Annual Winter Fest on Dec. 3, 2017 starts with a family-friendly breakfast with Santa, and then burning calories by playing in 20 tons of snow! The day ends with a parade and tree lighting.
SAN LUIS OBISPO REGION
San Luis Obispo
A number of holiday events occur in San Luis Obispo.
On Dec. 2, 2017, Santa will arrive at the San Luis Obispo Amtrak Station, step off the Surfliner, and then make his way to the private car at the SLO Railroad Museum to listen to the wishes of your children.
On Dec. 17, 2017, bring your children, family and friends together for an afternoon of joyous holiday singing with the San Luis Vocal Arts Ensemble: Forbes Pipe Organ Concert & Holiday Family Sing-a-long.
On Dec. 19, 2017, Cal Poly Arts presents The Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show.
Kids get all kinds of free stuff when their family stays in a Morro Bay hotel property this holiday. Free cup of clam chowder, a free kit, free bay tour, and more. The Lighted Boat Parade on Dec. 2 is free. Entrance to three museums is free.
Enjoy a variety of holiday songs, lighting of the Historic City Hall, and the arrival of Santa and Mrs. Claus in Atascadero.
It’s a winter paradise for all ages on Dec. 8, 2017 at the Sunken Gardens. A massive snow slide, snow play areas, rock climbing wall, bounce houses, Santa and Mrs. Claus, and over 50 food and craft vendors await you!
Zookeepers step in as Santa’s Elves to prepare gifts for the animals of Charles Paddock Zoo on Dec. 16, 2017.
From late November through the end of December 2017, Hearst Castle is decked out in holiday splendor. View the estate as Mr. Hearst’s guests enjoyed it during the 1920s and 1930s during the season.
MONTEREY BAY REGION
Monterey’s Cannery Row kicks off the holiday season with its annual Tree Lighting Ceremony and arrival of Santa Claus and his reindeer on Nov. 24.
Carmel By The Sea
The towering tree at the top of the city’s main boulevard comes to life at the Carmel Holiday Tree Lighting on Dec. 1. Come see the tree that becomes the city’s welcoming beacon throughout the holiday season.
Cambria’s Christmas Market, hosted on the grounds of Cambria Pines Lodge, will be held Nov. 24 through Dec. 23, 2017 (closed Nov 27, 28 and Dec 4, 5, 11). Come see spectacular lighting displays throughout the Lodge’s gardens and main building. The festive Market, in the style of Germany’s Christmas markets, will offer food booths, musicians, and locally-made items.
From Nov. 16 through Dec 31, the Great American Melodrama Theater in Oceano offers a heartwarming one-act version of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and a hilarious fractured fairy tale opera through its Holiday Vaudeville Revue.
Capitola Village / Santa Cruz
Surfing Santa arrives in Capitola Village with his outrigger canoe and surfboard on Nov. 25, 2017. After Santa towels off, he’ll settle in his beach chair to hear your holiday wishes.
Roaring Camp Railroads delights families with its Holiday Lights Train, departing from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk evenings of Nov. 24 and 25, Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10, and 16-23, 2017. Vintage excursion cars, adorned with thousands of colorful lights, roll through city streets on a one-hour trip. Onboard, sip hot-spiced cider and join in a holiday singalong.
Write a letter to Santa and bring it with you to the boardwalk, there will be a North Pole mailbox waiting there.
On Dec. 2, come out and see beautifully decorated boats parade throughout Santa Cruz Harbor.
Holidays On The Ranch include taking a draft-horse carriage ride, decorating a tree, making a wreath, and more, all while enjoying the preserve at Wilder Ranch State Park on Dec. 9, 2017.
For ocean and nature inspired gifts, visit the Jingle Shells Art & Craft Festival at Seymour Marine Discovery Center on Dec. 10, 2017.
The magic of the season comes to light during Holiday@Night at Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park on Dec. 1-3, 8-10, 15-23, 26-31, 2017. This extraordinary experience features twinkling lights and festive displays throughout the park – plus Santa, ice-skating under the stars, a live Charlie Brown Christmas show, and a grand holiday feast!
Santa comes to town and helps light the huge tree to kick off the holiday season at the Downtown Gilroy Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting on Dec. 2, 2017.