Best Things to Do in the South Bay This December

Looking to fill a couple hours of your day while in the South Bay? With so many offerings in the area, we’ve curated the top events this month including holiday lights, New Year celebrations, and caviar! Less researching and more having fun. (And getting into the holiday spirit!) Enjoy!

Featured Photo: Kristi Yamaguchi Downtown Ice, by D. Garcia

Christmas in the Park

Through January 1

When in San Jose for the holidays, it is a must to visit Christmas in the Park. It is a local family-oriented Christmas tradition of lights, trees, and fun exhibits at Plaza de Cesar Chavez, located in downtown San Jose. Walk around and enjoy a variety of holiday fun and hot cocoa. 

More info:

Photo: Courtesy of Aloha Downtown Skate

Aloha Downtown Skate

Through January 8

The beloved Kristi Yamaguchi Downtown Ice Rink has been replaced this winter season with roller skating. Make new memories and keep the holiday tradition of skating alive this winter season. 

More info:

Photo: Courtesy of Palo Alto Art Center Foundation

Holiday Sale

December 4

If handmade gifts from local artisans are your jam, the Art Center Studio Holiday Sale wants to be the toast with jewelry, functional and fine art ceramics, paintings, prints and more.

More info:

Photo: Courtesy of Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Santa Cruz Holiday Lights Train

December 3-4, 12-13, 17-23

Get festive and hop on the Holiday Lights Train in Santa Cruz. Each weekend in December before Christmas, the Holiday Lights Train will pick up riders at Neptune’s Kingdom on the boardwalk for a 60-minute round-trip holiday excursion. 

More info:

Santa Run Silicon Valley

December 11

Get your run on at the Silicon Valley Santa Run in downtown San Jose. The race will be an excellent opportunity for the community to come together and support SJAspires. All 5k participants will receive a holiday-themed long sleeve race shirt, plus post-race milk and cookies at Christmas in the Park. Plus, the first 100 registrants receive a free Santa suit! All participants have the option to purchase a Santa suit during registration for $10.

More info:

do_south bay_santa cruz boardwalk_800x450_ryo chiba
Photo: Courtesy of Ryo Chiba

New Year’s Eve Out in Santa Cruz

December 31

The options are seemingly endless. They include Surf City’s best wine bar/restaurant, legendary properties and arguably the seminal craft beer bottle/tap house by the bay, all doing special dinners, performances or both. So a toast is in order. HNY, y’all. It’s been another doozie. 

More info:

Looking for more things to do in the area?

Visit our What to Do in Northern California page!

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