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San Diego Holiday Pop-ups You Don’t Want to Miss

Trade the pine trees for some palm trees this winter at these seasonal holiday pop-ups. Whether it’s getting in the spirit with some holiday-themed cocktails, dusting off your skates and hitting an oceanfront ice rink, or wandering around a magical holiday market, San Diego offers a festive getaway unlike any other.

Looking for enchanting ways to jingle all the way to a warmer and brighter holiday celebration? Make sure to hit these festive seasonal pop-ups in San Diego.

Jolly Spirits

San Diego’s vibrant cocktail scene offers more than spiked hot chocolate and eggnog. This year, annual festive cocktail pop-ups Miracle and Sippin’ Santa are returning to town with inventive holiday-themed drinks and kitschy décor now through Dec. 31, 2021. The nostalgic Christmas cocktail bar Miracle makes its way back to Polite Provisions in North Park and The Roxy Encinitas with cheery cocktails like “the gingerbread-y snowball old fashioned” and the “spiked jingle balls nog.” Sippin’ Santa, San Diego’s island-themed Christmas bar, will be popping up at The Grass Skirt in Pacific Beach, where you can enjoy tiki-inspired food and drinks while you’re transported to a festive island paradise. Nason’s Beer Hall has also decked their halls into a winter wonderland, shining bright with thousands of Christmas lights. Stop by Nason’s for frosty beers, jolly cocktails, tasty bites, and festive decor now through January 2, 2022.

Holiday Shopping for the Whole Family

A European holiday tradition is popping up at Petco Park this winter. Now through Dec. 24, 2021, the Holiday Market and Trail is returning to Gallagher Square at Petco Park, featuring local and European artisan shops, magical lighting displays, seasonal food and beverages, Santa and other holiday characters. Stroll along a trail lined with festive lights that evoke such themes as Candyland, winter wonderland and classic Christmas. You can also enjoy live music on select nights.

> San Diego’s Simple Solutions to Holiday Shopping

Ice Skating with a Twist

Glide on ice while watching the surf break at the Hotel del Coronado‘s Skating by the Sea®, now through Jan. 2, 2022. This spectacular beachfront ice rink features stunning views of the ocean and benefits Make-A-Wish® San Diego. You can even reserve your own rink-side lounge at Frostbite – A Place to Chill. Frostbite features plush seating around a roaring fire pit with full food and beverage service. If you’re looking for another way to give back and have fun, check out the Rady Children’s Ice Rink at ARTS DISTRICT Liberty Station, now through Jan. 9, 2022. All net proceeds from the rink will benefit the Thriving After Cancer program at the Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Rady Children’s.

> Enjoy more Outdoor Holiday Merriment

Christmas Classics 

For a uniquely San Diego holiday tradition, head to the Old Globe Theatre in Balboa Park for its storied production of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!. Now through Dec. 31, 2021, snow-covered Who-ville comes alive to usher in holiday cheer for all the Whos far and near. Now through Dec. 26, 2021, The Old Globe will also host the family-friendly Ebenezer Scrooge’s BIG San Diego Christmas Show, a fast, funny and highly theatrical reimagining of one of the most beloved holiday stories ever told. All the traditional elements of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” are intact. These elements include the iconic ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Future — but with a local twist.

> The Holidays take Center Stage

Holiday Arts and Lights

With temperatures averaging 65 degrees in the winter months, everything can be outside, even art!  For an uncommon outdoor holiday lighting experience, be sure to check out Botanic Wonderland at San Diego Botanic Garden, Dec. 4-30, 2021. Stroll through the festively illuminated garden alongside Santa and professional carolers. For more holiday-themed visuals, head to ARTS DISTRICT Liberty Station for Salute the Season Art Installations, a self-guided tour located on Historic Decatur Road between Barracks 19 and Liberty Public Market.

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