Growing up, my family did something festive every day in December to celebrate the holidays. My mom pinned a homemade advent calendar up on the wall in the living room and each day there was a Christmas activity for all of us to do.
Most days the activities were simple like pulling out all the Christmas movies from the attic and watching one, or starting a Christmas puzzle, or taking a family trip to Zoo Lights in downtown Portland. But some days my parents went all out. One year I remember we checked into the Marriott in downtown Portland for a night and did all our Christmas shopping during the day. Another year we snuck into the decked out Marriott to go swimming (poor economy + creative parents for the win).
I think that’s why come this time of year I’m always looking up every Christmas festivity and trying to recreate some of that holiday magic. If you’re in Newport Beach, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite holiday festivities. And if you’re not, be sure to check out your local holiday guides and these festive, holiday dresses for cheap!
Holiday Red Dresses Under $100
Crystal Cove Tree Lighting: Newport knows that everything’s better at the beach, so it’s no surprise that’s where one of the biggest tree lighting ceremonies will be.
When: December 1
Where: Crystal Cove Beach
Kicks off with a holiday bizarre from 10am-5:30pm. Santa shows up at 4:00pm. And the tree lighting begins at 5:15.
Corona Del Mar Christmas Walk: One of my favorite holiday traditions since I’ve moved to Newport Beach is the CDM Christmas Walk. Thousands of people stroll the streets of CDM in Christmas attire and sample cuisine from restaurants, shop from local vendors, enter raffles, listen to live music, and catch up with friends in the beer and wine garden.
When: December 2, 11:00am-4:00pm.
Where: Corona Del Mar
Ice Skating at Hotel Del Coronado: If you’re looking to sing Christmas tunes in the car for an hour (or two!) visit Hotel Del Coronado where you’ll find an ice skating rink set up right in front of the beach. It’s open to the public until January 31st and is $35 a person. More details here.
Balboa Island Home Walking Tour:Balboa Island homes are charming as can be from the outside and during the holiday home walking tour, you get a chance to see the most decked out houses from the inside as well.
When: Sunday, December 9th, from 11:00am until 4:00pm.
Tickets:You may purchase tickets here.
Free Events: Walking around Balboa Island, visiting the Christmas Tree at Fashion Island, and checking out the lights at Rodgers Gardens and on Back Bay are all festive activities and free.
Newport Beach Boat Parade: Gather up your friends, bundle up (as much as is necessary in Newport Beach), and head out to catch the best boat parade I’ve ever seen.
When: December 19-23. Starts at 6:30 every night at the tip of Lido Isle and ends in the same spot around 9:30. Best place to catch the show: Balboa Island at 8:50.
Los Alamitos Choir Holiday Show:The number one choir in the country is right here in Newport Beach. They wrote, sang, and produced an original song for one of the video segments in Waiting at Hayden’s and their annual holiday show is an event that’s not to be missed–especially for those who love Glee!
When: December 6, 7, & 8.
Tickets: Can be found here.
Do you have any favorite holiday traditions in Newport Beach or elsewhere?! I’d love to hear them below! Happy Holidays, everybody!