December Nights

Balboa Park

December Nights is back! The City of San Diego's annual free holiday festival will kick off the holiday season this December 1 (from 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.) and December 2, 2023 (from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.).  The event sprawls across Balboa Park and features tons of holiday lights and decorations, many different multicultural food options, live music, vendors, and much more.

Held the first Friday and Saturday of each December, the event was originally founded when ten Balboa Park cultural organizations hosted the first celebration. That year, 3,000 San Diegans gathered to be a part of the occasion, and it has been a treasured event ever since.

How to Get to December Nights

Download December Nights Map

Free Rides to Balboa Park from City College

Free rides will be available in downtown San Diego from City College Transit Center during December Nights on both Friday and Saturday. Take the UC San Diego Blue Line or Orange Line to City College Transit Center to catch Route 7, Rapid 215, or the Park Blvd. shuttle.

To arrive on the east side of Balboa Park (Route 7, 215, or Park Blvd. Shuttle):

  • Regular northbound service for Park Blvd. on Route 7 and Rapid 215.

  • Southbound Route 7 and Rapid 215 will not service between University Ave. and City College during December Nights.

  • There will be an additional Park Blvd. shuttle running from City College Transit Center to Park Blvd. & Morley Field Drive. 

  • When leaving the park to head southbound back to City College, catch the Park Blvd. shuttle on the northbound side (east side of Park Blvd.) at any bus stop between President's Way and Upas.

  • Coming from Mid-City? You can take the detoured Route 7 or Rapid 215 to City College and then ride on the northbound Route 7, Rapid 215, or Park Blvd. shuttle.

To arrive on the west side of Balboa Park (Route 3 or 120):

MTS will provide nearby service to December Nights via Trolley to the Fifth Avenue Trolley Station, then transfer to Route 3 or 120.

  • From the Fifth Avenue Trolley Station, walk to Fifth Avenue & C Street and take northbound Route 3 or 120 to Fifth and Laurel, then walk approximately two blocks east to the west side of Balboa Park. 

  • Return service to the Trolley is available at Fourth and Laurel until approximately 11:45 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 

  • Please note: free rides are only available on Route 7, 215, and the Park Blvd Shuttle.

From the Green Line:

Riders can also take the southbound Route 120 from the Fashion Valley Transit Center. Exit at Fourth & Laurel. Walk 0.5 miles to Balboa Park.

For more information:

City of San Diego's website

Address and Directions

Balboa Park
1549 El Prado
San Diego, CA 92101
United States

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