Tis the season for joy and peace and several communities across San Diego County truly tap into the holiday spirit by showcasing stunning light displays right outside their homes. Whether you’re a hot chocolate person or an egg nog aficionado, one thing that can be agreed upon is that the displays local residents work hard on each year surely lift the holiday spirit.
Here’s a list of several holiday light displays in different neighborhoods throughout the region:
Fairway Village – Carmel Mountain Ranch
If you’re looking to be dazzled by a light display, head on over to this Carmel Mountain Ranch community! Aside from the beautiful lights and display, this neighborhood hosts a yearly block party the Saturday before Christmas. Residents enjoy sips of hot chocolate and cider while they nosh on holiday cookies and snacks at the shindig. The event is open to the public.
Where to go: Stoney Gate Place in San Diego, CA 92128
When to go: from dusk to 10:30 p.m. through Jan. 1
Garrison St. Lights – Point Loma
Not too far from Sunset Cliffs rests a neighborhood bustling with holiday joy and stupendous displays. Garrison St. Lights is back with its festive lights that would inspire even those who typically say “bah humbug” to the holidays. Stroll through this Point Loma community for family-friendly holiday displays certain to lift your seasonal spirit.
Where to go: 3616 Garrison St., San Diego, CA 92106
When to go: 5 to 9 p.m. through Dec. 31
Christmas Card Lane – Rancho Peñasquitos
It’s iconic and a San Diego favorite year after year (it even has almost five stars on Yelp!). Christmas Card Lane features dozens upon dozens of homes that deck the halls with boughs of holly and their front yards with imaginative lights and displays. Visitors can cruise by the holiday attraction or go at a slower pace by taking a leisurely walk to truly take in every detail of each home’s décor
Where to go: 9190 Oviedo St, San Diego, CA 92129
When to go: Dusk to 10 p.m.
“Merry-tage Court” – Scripps Ranch
If you’re in northern San Diego, one particular Scripps Ranch neighborhood gets deep in the holiday spirit for all to enjoy. “Merry-tage Court” takes its light displays seriously and several homes enjoy indulging in the winter fun. The neighborhood even gets so into the festivities that it earned its seasonal nickname as a fun twist on its street name.
Where to go: Merritage Court and Stonebridge Parkway
When to go: 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. now through Dec. 31.
Belardo Lights – Tierrasanta
What started as an ode to his son and way to bond with him turned into a yearly holiday tradition in this Tierrasanta neighborhood. Thanks to the creation of Randy Schimka, visitors can be awed by the various homes that truly deck the halls and their yards with impressive displays. Adding to the magic, the light displays are synchronized with FM 106.1’s festive music.
Where to go: 5306 Belardo Dr.
When to go: 6 to 10 p.m. nightly through Monday, Dec. 27.
Joy to The World: Photos of Festive Holiday Displays in San Diego County
Christmas Circle – Chula Vista
It has almost five stars on Google Reviews, nearly five stars on Yelp and 100 stars in the hearts of South Bay residents. This Chula Vista neighborhood gets deep in the holiday spirit each year and transforms into a beloved tradition known as Christmas Circle. As the name suggests, it embodies all things merry and jolly in this circular neighborhood.
Where to go: Whitney and Mankato Streets in Chula Vista, CA 91910
When to go: 5 to 10 p.m. each evening through Christmas
Candy Cane Lane – Poway
Hickory Street turns into a wonderous hot spot for holiday cheer each year with its dazzling lights. House after house in this area go to infinity and beyond to spread their jolly, good vibes through the holidays. Those who have a hankering for all things sweet can also take cash to buy some hot cocoa from residents.
Where to go: Hickory Street Poway, CA 92064
When to go: Dusk to 10 p.m. through Christmas (some homes leave their displays through New Year’s)
Candy Cane Lane – San Marcos
A whole host of houses in this North County city get their Christmas on together, with candy canes and other holiday decorations lining the street. You won't be surprised to hear things get more festive after dark.
Where to go: 1000 Crimson Drive, San Marcos, CA 92069
Christmas on Knob Hill – San Marcos
Droves of people travel to San Marcos each year to engage in this community’s cherished tradition. After taking a break in 2020 due to the pandemic, Christmas on Knob Hill is returning this year in full force to spread happiness. Santa Claus, himself, has also made an appearance in previous years. He may return for those who made the nice list.
Where to go: 1639 Knob Hill Rd., San Marcos, CA 92069
When to go: 5 to 9 p.m. nightly through Dec. 30
Jingle Bell Hill – El Cajon
Known as “El Cajon’s very own winter wonderland,” Jingle Bell Hill puts an extra twinkle in every visitors' eyes with the hundreds of lights that illuminate Pepper Drive. Stroll down the illuminated neighborhood on foot or feel free to cruise on down from the comfort of your car at this location.
Where to go: Pepper and Lindenwod Drives, or Pepper and Rockview Drives.
When to go: 6 to 9 p.m. (10 p.m. on weekends) nightly
Tinsel Town – Lakeside
Those who are looking for a merry, good time can head on down to Lakeside's "Tinsel Town" extraordinaire. The yearly feel-good display invites neighbors and all alike to take in the sights as dozens of homes light up the sky with their beautiful decorations. And to add to the fun, a special, green visitor is teased to make an appearance (Hint: he usually resides just outside Whoville).
Where to go: 10248 Paseo Palmas Dr.
When to go: evenings beginning Saturday, Dec. 5
Starlight Circle – Santee
The nickname for this small Santee neighborhood is straightforward and deserved – it’s a circular residential area that twinkles in the evenings of December. Here, you can immerse yourself in a winter wonderland full of lights and displays that will make you say “ooh” and, dare I say it – “aah.”
Where to go: West Glendon Circle and East Glendon Circle in Santee, 92071
When to go: 5:30 to 10 p.m. nightly through Christmas
Did we miss one? We want to know! Please click here to tell us about your favorite holiday light display in San Diego County residential neighborhoods.