The holidays are among us, and it’s time to celebrate! This time can be joyous, but it can also be stressful financially. Thankfully, Orange County has plenty of free activities for all ages to lift your spirits without emptying your wallet. Some events even offer free parking.
109th Annual Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade
2301 University Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Dates: December 13 – Sunday, December 17, 2017
Recognized as one of the top holiday celebrations in the country, the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade will light up the water with more than hundreds of bright and decorative ships. There will also be a significant amount of homes lit up along the coastline to add even more pizzazz to the event. This year’s parade theme is hosted by the Commodores Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, and there will be free viewing spots all along the harbor; however, you can also watch the parade from restaurants or on a boat. Make sure to visit www.christmasboatparade.com for more details.
Dana Point Annual Boat Parade of Lights
Dana Point Harbor
34555 Golden Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629
Dates: December 8, 9, 15 & 16, 2017
Boaters from all over Orange County will be celebrating this free annual harbor parade during the holidays. For two weekends in December, head to the harbor and view the parade for free! You can also make reservations at some of the restaurants that overlook the harbor and enjoy a great meal along with the parade.
23rd Annual Nutcracker Christmas Tree Lighting & Holiday Village
Anaheim, CA 92805
Date: December 2, 2017
Downtown Anaheim will be decked out for the holidays again this year with plenty of winter activities. Along with an area to play in the snow, there will be entertainment, train rides and a special tree-lighting ceremony. The admission and parking are both free to the public. Click here to find directions and the best places to park.
Winter Festival & Tree Lighting
La Plaza Park
34111 La Plaza
Dana Point, CA 92629
Date: December 2, 2017 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Gather family and friends for holiday fun at The Winter Festival & Tree Lighting supported by the city of Dana Point. Activities throughout the day include Santa visits, carnival games, craft fair, Dana Point Police Services Kid Print ID, face painting, cookie decorating, holiday crafts, Lego Santa’s Village Workshop, the Mini Express Train, a fun petting zoo, pony rides for kids and the annual tree lighting! Most activities are free.