Reorg your trip with these festive and protected occasions in California (and your area, too)

It’s been a damn good year. Doesn’t it feel right to end it with a (safe) celebration? From Diwali and Hanukkah to Christmas and Kwanza to New Years Eve, the 2020 holiday season may appear to have been canceled. But the reality is there are a multitude of festive, safe outdoor activities to enjoy with your immediate family or quarantine team and add the vacation excitement to saying goodbye (no, really, don’t let the door knock your way out ) until 2020.

On the California coast, traditional events have twisted to create sure festive memories. This season, no matter where you are, create a series of joyful moments that will make you feel the holiday magic.

Temecula chilled

All of downtown Temecula and the surrounding wineries are dedicated to the magic of the season with their annual event, Temecula Chilled. Enjoy the winter sun in Southern California during the day and relax with mulled wine at night as you stroll through the city-wide lighting effects.

Take a Jingle Bell “sleigh ride” in a horse-drawn carriage along a path adorned with more than 100,000 twinkling lights and Christmas decorations. Reserve an hour on the Peltzer ice rink, which has more than 8,500 square meters of ice, to distance yourself socially. Or watch an outdoor Christmas movie at Europa Village and visit the Gingerbread Village as well.

Solvangs Julefest and digital “Nisse Adventure”

Solvang 5135-

This quaint, Denmark-inspired village was recently named one of the “Best Christmas Cities” in the US by Country Living and is lit with festive scenes. More than 100 Christmas trees line the downtown streets, and shops take part in the annual tree decoration competition. And don’t forget Solvang’s famous Danish bakeries, which offer delicious sweet treats to take away. For children (or the young at heart), the digital “Nisse Adventure” is a city-wide scavenger hunt for the mysterious Solvang Nisse (AKA Christmas elves). When “Elf-Trackers” find the nit, scan a QR code for a price at the end.

Lights at Cambria Pines


While the annual Cambria Christmas market is being postponed until next year, the lights of Cambria Pines don’t disappoint. This magical land is a magical trail with over a million lights, live music, mulled wine, handicrafts for sale and a safe “contactless” Santa in a greenhouse. It will make you believe in the magic of the season again. Stroll through the enchanting tunnel of lights and meander through beautiful sparkling landscapes with famous holiday scenes.

Vacation in your car


Holidays in Your Car is now open in two Beachtown locations, Ventura and Del Mar, transforming a drive-in venue and fairground into wintry wonderlands with live family vacation entertainment and an epic light show with over a million LED lights, Lasers and projections through a holiday playlist. Both extravaganzas of the Drive-Thru-Light show feature professional ballet productions by The Nutcracker and an original Christmas show by Santa Saves.

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