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A H2O Holiday in San Diego

Parade of Lights
A H2O Holiday in San Diego
For travelers looking for an unconventional holiday experience, San Diego presents plenty of unique opportunities for visitors to experience the holidays by the water. Visitors looking to enjoy Christmas or New Year's Eve on a waterfront can look no further than these ten jolly joints.
  1. Now through Jan. 2, 2023, visitors can glide on ice while watching the surf break at the Hotel del Coronado's Skating by the Sea®. This beachfront ice rink features stunning ocean views and benefits Make-A-Wish® San Diego. Guests can also reserve a rink-side lounge at Frostbite – A Place to Chill, which features plush seating around a roaring fire pit with complete food and beverage service.
  2. San Diego's vibrant cocktail scene offers more than spiked hot chocolate and eggnog. This year, the annual holiday cocktail pop-up Sippin’ Santa returns to The Grass Skirt with inventive holiday-themed drinks and decorations through Dec. 31, 2022. A few steps from San Diego’s young and laid-back neighborhood of Pacific Beach, The Grass Skirt is a perfect opportunity for guests to enjoy a festive cocktail by the ocean.
  3. Families can get in the seasonal spirit at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration through Jan. 8, 2023, where they can sip on hot chocolate with candy toppings while visiting sea otters, flamingos, sea lions, turtles and bat rays. There are also plenty of opportunities to capture picture-perfect moments of good cheer amid the lavishly decorated 100-acre park, including a sea-themed Christmas tree and a holiday music-activated tunnel of lights.
  4. Travelers can enjoy sweeping views of the San Diego Bay while getting into the holiday spirit at the Over the Top Holiday Lounge at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in Downtown San Diego. Located at the Top of the Hyatt on the 40th floor, the pop-up features beautiful holiday decor, themed holiday cocktails and incredible ocean views in a cozy cabin-themed winter wonderland. The holiday menu includes spiked hot cocoa, apple cider, eggnog, and other festive offerings.
  5. Nothing says season’s greetings in San Diego like boats covered in colorful twinkling lights floating along the water. On Dec. 11 and Dec. 18, the iconic and always free San Diego Bay Parade of Lights returns for its 52nd year with over 80 lavishly decorated boats in the spirit of this year’s theme, “FantaSEA on the Bay.” This year, for the 6th time, the parade will proceed to the pier at Cesar Chavez Park before turning to Coronado, giving spectators another area to view the parade.
  6. Party people can ring in 2023 by the bay at San Diego’s largest New Year’s Eve event – the 20th Anniversary Big Night San Diego at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. The all-inclusive VIP ticket includes unlimited drinks, a buffet, and entertainment throughout the eight different party zones. Guests can get their groove on in the Retro Zone, at one of the several Club Zones, or check out the silent disco.
  7. Festival friends can celebrate New Year’s Eve at Petco Park near San Diego’s Downtown waterfront during CRSSD Proper NYE / NYD. The two-day FNGRS CRSSD lineup is stacked with house, melodic and techno DJs, including Kaskade, SOFI TUKKER, Lane 8, Chris Lake, Follow The Fish, John Summit, Nora En Pure and over 20 artists in total across three stages. At Proper NYE at Petco Park, located conveniently between Downtown's East Village and Gaslamp neighborhoods and steps away from the San Diego Bay, concertgoers can listen to beats along the bay.
  8. Cruisers can cheer to 2023 onboard a scenic cruise along the San Diego Bay. City Cruises’ 3-hour New Year's Eve Gala Dinner Cruise from 8:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. includes free-flowing Champagne, a gourmet meal prepared fresh onboard by City Cruises’ chefs, DJ entertainment to keep guests dancing all night long, and of course, incredible views of San Diego’s Downtown Skyline. Guests can also spend New Year's Day 2023 aboard a yacht sipping mimosas and enjoying a delicious brunch on Flagship Cruises. Flagship's New Year's Brunch Cruise includes breakfast and brunch favorites like a Three-Egg Omelette, Banana Foster French Toast, Chicken and Waffles, Carnitas Chilaquiles and more.
  9. Those looking for a more intimate, romantic way to welcome the New Year should dine at one of San Diego’s many restaurants with stunning water views that are perfect for a New Year’s Eve candlelight dinner for two. The Marine Room at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club is an award-winning culinary adventure featuring seafood creations made with globally influenced flavors. At high tide, diners can enjoy captivating ocean views at eye level and be immersed in the dramatic waves on La Jolla Shores.
  10. Out-of-towners can journey into the new year while cruising Mission Bay aboard the Bahia Belle at the Bahia Resort’s New Year’s Eve Party. Cruising non-stop from 10:00 p.m. - 12:30 a.m., guests will enjoy a champagne toast, the chef's choice of appetizers, multiple floors of live DJs, a cash bar, and festive party favors. The Bahia Resort Hotel also invites guests to ring in the new year at its onsite restaurant Dockside 1953, with a special prix fixe dinner complete with a complimentary champagne toast.

For more information on San Diego’s offerings, including exciting vacation packages and valuable coupons for attractions, restaurants and more, visit the San Diego Tourism Authority’s website at www.sandiego.org.

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