T minus one week until the the big day! Whether you need a day off from the crazy holiday stress or you’re out and about and just need a short break in your shopping day, the season continues in San Diego with holiday-themed activities. Spend an entire day getting your Christmas on at a huge holiday festival, take your kiddos to tea with Santa or stop by one of a few retail centers for a fun visit with Santa and holiday crafts.

San Diego

A Christmas Tabernacle
Celebrate Christmas at this all day festival, featuring a living nativity, holiday food and treats, Santa’s Village (with Santa, live reindeer and snow), a themed Christmas tree forest, cookie decorating and much more. Sat, 11:00 am. Liberty Station. $12 for children 4-12/$18 for adults. All ages. Event Details.

Teddy Bear Tea
Combine the magic of the holidays with a tea party, complete with canapes and paninis, assorted pastries, tartlets, brownies and scones. Following your afternoon tea, Santa’s magician elf will entertain in the Grand Lobby. Finally, listen to Santa read a Christmas classic and snap a picture with the big man. Sat, 2:30 pm. Westgate Hotel. $26 for children 10 and under/$39 for adults. All ages. Event Details.

North County

Garden of Lights
After the sun goes down, the San Diego Botanic Garden is transformed into a dazzling winter wonderland with over 100,000 sparkling lights, creating a magical holiday experience. Holiday crafts, live music, roasting marshmallows and Santa will round out your evening. Sat, 5:00 pm. San Diego Botanic Gardens. $4 for children/$12 for adults. All ages. Event Details.

Holiday Craft Activity
Stop by a great local toy store and join Santa for some crafting fun. Santa himself will lead the little ones and help them creative a holiday craft. Whether you’re out doing your holiday shopping and need a break or just want an hour of simple holiday joy, don’t miss it! Sat, 12:30 pm. Geppetto’s Toys. Free. All Ages. Event Details.

Bressi Village Holiday Celebration
Join the fun as Bressi Village Center celebrates the holidays with food, drink and the Clauses. Your kids can take pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus (bonus!), while your whole family will enjoy the great products on display by local merchants. Each child who visits Santa will receive a complimentary holiday book. Sat, 12:00 pm. Bressi Village Center. Free. All ages. Event Details.

— Laura Willard

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