If you’re in Los Angeles, Orange County, or San Diego on Christmas Day (December 25), you might be looking for something to do or someplace to go. As you might expect, most places will be closed for the holiday. But you do have many really fun choices for things to do in SoCal cities. Here are the top picks. Please make sure you check with the venues for any last minute updates.
SoCal Things to do on Christmas Day
Tour the Tourist Attractions. SoCal has more amazing theme parks and attractions in fewer square miles that just about anywhere else. Want to know who’s gates are open on December 25 (most with deals available)?
- San Diego Zoo: open Christmas Day
- Safari Park: open Christmas Day
- Disneyland: open Christmas Day
- LEGOLAND California: open Christmas Day
- Universal Studios: open Christmas Day
Be very amused. Pacific Park at Santa Monica Pier, is open all day on December 25, with free admission. Weather permitting, all rides, games and food booths will be open, but you can call 310-260-8744 to confirm. On Christmas afternoon, you can hop on over to the weird and wacky Bunny Museum in Pasadena (1933 Jefferson Drive), for a look at ridiculous rabbit related objects. The museum is open for visits 365 days a year by appointment, so be sure to call first.
See a Holiday Show. Even on December 25, you can still get tickets, at a discount (while they last) to see the Winter Wonderettes at Welk Resort Theatre San Diego — the sequel to ’60s girl group musical The Marvelous Wonderettes. The show picks up the action on Christmas 1968, a few months after the Wonderettes’ 10-year high school reunion. You can stay in the spirit with songs like “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Santa Baby,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” “O Tannenbaum” and “Mele Kalikimaka.”
See the 7 Caves by Kayak. You can book a tour to kayak to the 7 caves in La Jolla. The tours run on Christmas Day, so you can enjoy up-close views of the beautiful marine life, sea cliffs and seven caves of the La Jolla Ecological Reserve on a two-hour guided kayaking tour. No experience is necessary for this fun excursion, and life-jackets are provided.
Go ice skating. Downtown on Ice, the outdoor holiday skating rink at Pershing Square (South Olive Ave in Los Angeles, across from the Millenium Biltmore), is open on Christmas Day from noon until 10pm. Tickets are only $6 per one-hour skate session, $2 for skate rentals.
Find a fun flick. Check the movie schedules to see what’s playing on December 25, including Disney’s Into the Woods, a live-action fairy-tale movie showing on Christmas Day 2014 at El Capitan Theater. If you want to skip the holiday lines at the movie theater, order tickets online for popular films.
Make reservations. You’ll find at least 288 restaurants serving dinner on December 25 in the Los Angeles/Orange County cities and 69 restaurants open on Christmas Day in San Diego, according to OpenTable.com, where you can even make reservations online in advance. If you’re into unholiday traditions, like dining on Chinese food, check out the list of Los Angeles Chinese restaurants on Freewebs.com.
Queue up the Queen Mary. The Queen Mary in Long Beach has a holiday event called CHILL, an ice kingdom and holiday village complete with ice skating, Santa sitings, Christmas trees, gingerbread decorating, carolers and more. It’s open on December 25. Act fast, though, because these tickets sell out.
See the lights. Southern California features an array of neighborhoods known for their festive holiday lights displays, from Rodeo Drive to Griffith Park to The Grove, the Candy Cane Lanes, and more.