Winter break is around the corner and we know how to make sure you have happy campers on your hands while school’s out! We’ve rounded up 13 winter break camps that will have your little elves making art, delving into science, riding horses, playing soccer, going surfing and so much more. Read on to learn about boredom-busting camps that will keep kids inspired and entertained.

San Diego Soccer Camp

Kick it out! Young athletes can burn energy and improve their soccer skills at this fun and engaging outdoor camp. Your young Messi or Rapinoe will improve his/her technical skills like dribbling, passing and receiving, shooting and finishing, speed, agility, defensive positioning and more. Kids will also play small and large sided games to further develop their skills in game situations while learning from expert coaches.

Date: Dec. 21-23
Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Cost: $150 (Register before Dec. 1 and the price is $125.)

4S Ranch Community Park
16118 4S Ranch Pkwy
San Diego, CA 92127

Winter Surf Camp

Ride the wave this winter! Whether it’s a one-day or three-day camp you are looking for, surf's up. Teaching kids (5 and older) how to surf is the best way for your little grom to spend the holiday break. Also, they welcome beginners to advanced students who will learn the basics, etiquette, wave selection and ocean safety. So, sign up and hit the beach.

Dates: Dec. 16-20; Dec. 23-27
Time: 9 a.m.-Noon; 12:30-3 p.m. or 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Cost: From $115-$315

San Diego Surf School
4850 Cass St.
San Diego, CA 92109

Liz Bolton Horse Camp

Horsing around is allowed at this camp where kids will go horseback riding and learn about horse anatomy, different breeds, plus how to properly care for and groom these elegant creatures. Campers range from ages 5-17 and no prior horse experience is needed.

Dates: Jan.7-11
Time: 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., half-day; 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., full-day
Cost: half-day, $250; full-day, $450

3390 Bridle Creek Ln.
San Marcos, CA 92069

Winter Critter Camp

A purr-fect camp for animal-lovers! Campers age preschool through 6th grade can play with the animals at the Helen Woodward Animal Center’s Winter Critter Camp. Even more, create crafts and get your team spirit on with group activities. With camp offered in Dec. and Jan., there’s plenty of times to choose. Also, discover how animals adapt and survive winter, where they live, and how they move. Then, bonus time, explore the relationships that critters have with humans (you!).

Dates: Dec. 20, Dec. 23–27th (no camp 12/25), Dec. 30th—January 3 (no camp 1/1)
Time: Preschool 9 a.m.-1 p.m.; K-6th, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (Extended care is available.)
Cost: Preschool, $58/day; K-6th, $77/day

Helen Woodward Animal Center
6461 El Apajo Rd.
Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067

Camp Fire Camp CaHiTo

The sparks will fly during the winter camps offered at Camp Fire. Nestled in the paths of Balboa Park, campers enjoy activities ranging from archery, hiking, low ropes challenge courses, fort building, nature crafts and much more. Camp Fire’s goal is to provide kids with the opportunity to find their spark, lift their voice and discover who they are through outdoor games, songs, and self-growth skills. Campers are divided into the following age groups: ages 5-7, ages 8-10, ages 11-13 and 9th-12th grade.

Dates: Dec. 16-20; Dec. 23-27; Dec. 30-Jan. 3
Time: Varies, see website.
Cost: $90-$360 (From one day to four days). note: Campers must be a Camp Fire SD member for $25.

Camp CaHiTo
3101 Balboa Dr.
San Diego, CA 92101

Science Camps

Young Einsteins, rejoice! The Fleet Science Center has two weeks of winter camp on offer from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. daily. Curious scientists in grades 1-3 will experience an array of educational, hands-on activities like making their own flying device in So You Think You Can Fly or make mechanical toys in Toys in Motion. Kids in grades 4-8 will hone their computer science and technology skills with with coding and have a game jam. Fun and educational!

Dates: Dec. 23, 26, 27, 30 & 31; Jan. 2 &3
Time: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Cost: Non-members: Grades 1-3, $65/day, members $60/day; Grades 4-6, non-members $75/day, members $70/day

Fleet Science Center
1875 El Prado
San Diego, CA 92101

Bach To Rock Winter Break Camps

Whether you have a budding rock star or an intermediate band player (for kids 7+) this local Encinitas camp will be singing their tune. Your musical camper will learn to play and appreciate music at a whole new level. There are several different camp options from half to full days and from 'Glee Club' to 'Beat Refinery DJ Camp.' Rock on!

Dates: Jan. 2 & 3; Jan. 6-10
Time: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Varies, see website

282 N. El Camino Real, Ste. C
Encinitas, CA 92024

––Beth Shea & Nikki Walsh


Celebrate the Magic of the Holiday Season at Disneyland

Festive Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremonies That Shine

100 Things to Do with Kids in San Diego