arrow-down arrow-left arrow-right arrow-up play-button plus tab-indicator dots close menu search facebook google-plus instagram pinterest rss twitter tiktok youtube rss-two heart Check FeaturedBadge linkedin minus apps placeholder linkedin

Christmas Tree Trail

Follow San Diego’s Holiday Spirit

Holiday cheer takes over San Diego, with Christmas trees of all shapes, kinds, themes and sizes lighting up throughout the region. From a Christmas tree right on the beach to a rooftop tree visible miles away to a Grinch Christmas tree, follow the trail and catch the spirit of the season in San Diego.

Christmas Tree at Hotel del Coronado

Hotel del Coronado

Where: 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado, CA 92118
Home to the world's first outdoor, electrified, living Christmas tree, the landmark Hotel del Coronado transforms into a dazzling holiday destination every winter. The traditional centerpiece is the majestic 21-foot tree displayed inside the hotel's historic lobby. But now there's an added attraction: The grove of Norfolk Island Pines on the Founders Lawn overlooking the ocean is transformed into the scene of a spectacular light show, orchestrated to music. The free, 11-minute "All That Jazz" show takes places every 30 minutes from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. nightly beginning in mid-November, and even includes a finale of snow flurries.

Christmas Tree at The Old Globe

The Old Globe

Where: 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego, CA 92101
The Old Globe, the Tony Award-winning theater in Balboa Park, produces the annual holiday musical Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas. A festive part of this yearly tradition is the towering, Whoville-inspired white, pink and red Christmas tree displayed in front of the Globe at Copley Plaza. Take in the sight of the whimsical tree's 110 Grinch lights, Seuss horns, wreaths, candelabras and other festive decorations, and discover why "Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more" in San Diego.

Christmas Trees at Mr As

Mister A's

Where: 2550 Fifth Ave., San Diego, CA 92103
Lighting up the sky is a holiday tradition at the Manchester Financial Centre in the Bankers Hill neighborhood. On the rooftop of the 13-story building, you'll find Mister A's, a culinary landmark offering a sophisticated menu and breathtaking views of San Diego. For more than 50 years, some 5,000 colorful lights have illuminated the building, a tradition started by John Alessio, Mister A's original owner. At the top of the building, 192 feet from the ground, a Christmas tree lights up. On clear nights, the spectacular light display can be seen from as far away as Tijuana.

Christmas Tree in Little Italy

Little Italy

Where: 621 W Fir St. and 523 W Date St., San Diego, CA 92101
Not one but two Christmas trees bring holiday cheer to Little Italy, San Diego's culinary destination. Aurora, a 32-foot faux-glass tree designed by California artist Joshua Hubert, illuminates the Piazza Basilone. The sculpture utilizes hundreds of polycarbonate panels to create a unique optical effect of reflective colors that change based on the viewer’s perspective and sun orientation. A few blocks away, at the Piazza della Famiglia, a traditional 30-foot Christmas tree is the main centerpiece. Holiday lights and snowflake decorations also adorn the plaza, home to the Little Italy Food Hall and the celebrated Morning Glory restaurant.

Christmas Tree in Liberty Station

Liberty Station

Where: 2816 Historic Decatur Rd., San Diego, CA 92106
Every year, Liberty Station — a cultural and gastronomic hub of San Diego — decks out its 88-foot Norfolk pine with colorful lights and ornaments. The holiday tree is located at the North Promenade behind Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens Liberty Station. The nearby Rady Children's Ice Rink is a traditional family favorite, and Liberty Station also hosts an annual menorah lighting ceremony.

Christmas Tree in Ocean Beach

Ocean Beach

Where: 1850 Ocean Front St., San Diego, CA 92107
With its quintessentially laid-back vibe, Ocean Beach is the SoCal beach town everyone's looking for when visiting San Diego. During the holidays, as surfers ride the waves near the pier, you can catch the spirit of the season by taking in the uniquely decked-out Christmas tree installed on the sand. The tradition of the OB tree, now sourced from the neighborhood each year, boasts a history as colorful and quirky as its decorations. Check out such unusual  ornaments as beach volleyballs, inflatable guitars and peace signs. Occasionally, children from local schools also make decorations to hang on the lower branches.

Christmas Tree at SeaWorld San Diego

SeaWorld San Diego

Where: 500 Sea World Dr., San Diego, CA 92109
Visible from miles away, SeaWorld's SkyTower glows festively during the season with thousands of colorful lights. It takes two days, 24 strands and a total of 2,000 bulbs to convert the 320-foot tower into the spectacular Tree of Lights, a familiar sight in San Diego's night sky during the holidays. And SeaWorld also lights up a separate 30-foot tree on park grounds for the holidays.

Christmas Tree on Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach San Diego during December

Crystal Pier

Where: 4500 Ocean Blvd., San Diego, CA 92109
Since 1927, Crystal Pier has been an iconic Pacific Beach landmark. Extending 872 feet into the Pacific, the family-owned pier is the only one on the West Coast to offer lodging over the ocean, in its classic cottages. During the day, Crystal Pier opens to the public and is a prime spot for fishing, whale-watching and catching a spectacular sunset. During the holidays, the pier gleams with strands of lights, wreaths decked by local businesses, and a majestic 20-foot Christmas tree.

Christmas Tree in Del Mar Village

Del Mar

Where: 1555 Camino Del Mar, Del Mar, CA 92014
Del Mar is a luxurious seaside community 20 minutes north of downtown San Diego, and is home to the renowned Del Mar Racetrack and annual San Diego County Fair. The town's charming Del Mar Village, along Highway 101, is popular for its unique boutiques, art galleries and ocean-view restaurants. And for the holidays, the village's streets are draped with festive lights, garlands and holiday banners, and graced by a 35-foot Christmas tree at L'Auberge Del Mar in the heart of Del Mar Village. Stroll by the adjacent, European-style Del Mar Plaza, an elegant outdoor shopping complex, and revel in festive decorations.

An illuminated Christmas tree rises over the town of Julian.


Where: Main Street at Washington Street, Julian, CA 92036
When it comes to a traditional holiday season in the San Diego region — with a chill in the air, the scent of pines on the breeze and maybe even a little snow wafting onto rooftops — you can't top Julian, the cozy mountain town just over an hour east of Downtown San Diego. With its historic village, charming boutiques and welcoming vibe, Julian is a favorite place to visit year-round. But at the holidays, the town transforms into a yuletide dream, complete with such happenings as a hayride, Victorian Christmas teas, a parade of lights and a visit from Santa. The centerpiece of Julian's "Country Christmas" celebration is the community's majestic Christmas tree, which rises from the Town Square and casts a warm glow over the village center.

Find a place to stay

Book online or call 1-800-350-6205 to speak with a local expert

Stay in touch

Sign up to receive the latest news, events, and updates about San Diego. Our monthly and weekly newsletters will keep you informed about the latest and greatest happenings in the destination.

Sign Up




Follow Us


English | Change Language

Select your country or region

Great Britain

Or use Google Translate