Holiday Favorites in Monterey Bay

Welcome to Monterey Bay where Holiday celebrations bring back memories that touch the heart and create new ones to last a lifetime. The month of December is packed and running with holiday events that will surely keep you and your whole pack entertained. We’ve rounded up a complete list of family-friendly holiday activities and info to keep you busy during the best time of the year.


1. Ice Skating by the Bay

Saturday, November 22 – Sunday, January 4

via MarinMommies

Custom House Plaza has been transformed into winter wonderland for this year’s Ice Skating by the Bay. Celebrate the holidays amidst the scenic coastlinein the the outdoor ice rink well into the New Year!

Admission for adults is: $12 • Admission for children 12 & under: $10 • Skate Rental Fee: $3

2. Streets of Bethlehem

Wednesday, December 3 – Saturday, December 6, 6:00pm-8:30pm

via the californian

The Streets of Bethlehem is a free community outdoor Christmas experience brought to you by volunteers from the First Baptist Church of Salinas. Discover the sights, sounds, and scents of Bethlehem at the time of the birth of Christ as they recreate the entire town of Bethlehem to provide visitors with a truly immersive experience.

3. Seaside’s Winter Wonderland

Friday, December 12, 6:00pm


Don’t miss arts and crafts, hay rides, official tree lighting, ice skating and a visit from Santa during the City of Seaside’s Winter Wonderland Celebration.

4. Jingle Bell Run with Santa

Saturday, December 13, 8:00am-11:00am


In the spirit of holiday sharing, join the Jingle Bell 5K race (run or walk) to benefit the Arthritis Foundation. Get festive by wearing holiday themed costumes and tying jingle bells to your shoelaces.

5. Santa’s Fly-In

Saturday, December 13, 10:30am

via sfgate

Be wowed as Santa and Mrs. Claus fly in by helicopter direct from the North Pole to Carmel Valley Village Airfield! There they’ll board their sleigh and lead a parade through Carmel Valley Village. Enjoy a parade filled with horses, the Carmel Valley Kiwanis Club train, unique autos and more! There’s also a photo session with jolly Old Saint Nick at the Carmel Valley Youth Center for the kids to enjoy.


We hope to see you in one of these events soon!

7 Things To Do in Monterey Bay this Holiday

Heading over here for the holiday season? Then you’re in for an adventure spree! There are so many unique attractions in Monterey Bay that it can be hard to pick just one! Here’s a list of Monterey Bay’s attractions and events to guide you this holiday.


1. Cannery Row

cannery row, monterey bay, california

via flickr

This bustling tourist destination was once an industrial area with working canneries lining the street. Bask in the history and ambiance of the old buildings that have now become shops, restaurants and hotels. You’ll find everything from dainty souvenir shops to candy stores and art galleries along with plenty of options for your taste buds from the dozens of restaurants that line up the street.


2. 17-Mile Drive

via tripadvisor

Drive along the scenic Monterey Peninsula, from Pacific Grove to Carmel. It is named as such because the drive from the Highway 1 Gate to the Carmel Gate is approximately 17 miles. If you enter and/or leave through different gates, the distance you travel on the 17-Mile Drive may be different. The beautiful 17-Mile Drive  is fundamentally a road that passes through an exclusive neighborhood so you will have to pay a fee (per car) to drive around and motorcycles are not allowed.


3. Whale Watching

monterey bay whale watch, whale watching

via monterey bay whale watch

Ever seen a whale before? If not, then now is the best time to see one the planet’s largest mammals. The entire Gray Whale population migrates past the Monterey coastline every winter and spring and are easily observed as they hug the coastline during migration. Head over here to know more about what to expect during whale watching.\


4. Monterey Bay Aquarium

via santa lucia school

The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a must-see when you’re stopping by the city of Monterey, CA. Click here for more details about this spectacular place.


5. 13th Annual Holiday Parade of Lights

parade of lights, christmas lights

via the northwestern

This annual lighted parade will feature marching bands, holiday floats, dance teams, equestrian groups, and of course, Santa Claus. After the parade, stores will remain open for Holiday shopping & wagon rides, photos with Santa & carolers. This event begins at 6:00pm. For more info contact 831-373-3304 or visit the official site here.

December 04, 2014
Type: Special Events
Location: Pacific Grove

6. 21st Annual Stillwell’s Fun in the Park

christmas, Annual Stillwell's Fun in the Park, Stillwell's Fun in the Park

via sfgate

Another special event you shouldn’t miss while in Monterey Bay. This year Caledonia Park will be the place to be for festive family fun featuring Santa’s arrival on a shiny PG fire truck, Frosty the Snowman, Snow Queen, hayrides, petting zoo & lots of entertainment. For more information visit website or send email.

December 06, 2014
Central Ave. and Jewell Ave.
Type: Special Events
Location: Caledonia Park

7. Historic Downtown Monterey’s Traditional Christmas Tree Lighting

christmas tree lighting, Christmas tree

via ovations 365

The City of Monterey is just buzzing with holiday events for the whole family. Don’t miss out on the carols, candles, cookies, cider, music and good cheer during the Historic Downtown Monterey’s Traditional Christmas Tree Lighting on December 4th from 5:00 to 6:00 PM.
December 04, 2014
570 Pacific Street
Venue: Colton Hall Museum & Old Jail
Type: Special Events
Location: Colton Hall
Admission: Free

Holiday celebrations in Monterey Bay bring back memories and create new ones to last a lifetime. Here, the holiday season is centered around beautiful lights, the joy of sharing and simple pleasures like a cup of hot cocoa with an ocean view. Stay with us this holiday season!