Winter in San Luis Obispo County is a special time ‑ lights, festive eats and so much more make it the perfect place to celebrate the season.
1. Hike to the Christmas tree on Madonna Mountain
One San Luis Obispo trail turns into a special holiday hike each December since 1975 when Alex Madonna first decided to put a Christmas tree at the top of San Luis Mountain. Hundreds of visitors make the iconic trek every winter. We recommend bringing a thermos with your favorite warm holiday drink to enjoy under the lights once you get to the top.
2. Stroll through Cambria Christmas Market
Inspired by a European-style Christmas, specifically Germany during the holidays, the Cambria Christmas Market features nearly 2 million LED bulbs. Stroll through the lights, sipping hot chocolate or mulled wine, and enjoy live music. The market also features hand-made goods, perfect if you’re still looking for just the right gift for a loved one.
3. Visit Santa’s House in Downtown
Really get into the Christmas spirit with a visit with Santa himself. Not only can you get your family photo with Santa, right now Mission Plaza features a giant walk-through ornament, thousands of lights, a 20’ holiday tree, a lighted tree forest, and other fun photo opportunities.
4. Find the perfect Christmas tree at Brookshire Farms
There’s nothing more festive than smelling the fresh pines and choosing just the right tree. Choose from a variety of trees including: grand fir, douglas fir, noble fir, nordman, and silver tip. Make your tree a staple in your home this Christmas.
5. See The Nutcracker live
For the past 43 years, the Civic Ballet of San Luis Obispo has presented this holiday classic. Enter a magical wonderland of toy soldiers, a blizzard of snowflakes, and a kaleidoscope of dancers. Gather your loved ones to come enjoy the beautifully decked hall, and let your soul have its fill of holiday cheer.
6. Sip on a hot drink & ride the Downtown Trolley
Feel like you’ve stepped into a holiday movie by taking a ride on the Downtown Trolley. Grab a hot cider or hot chocolate from your favorite coffee shop and climb aboard – be swept away on a dinner date, shopping excursion, or family outing to Mission Plaza.
7. Put on your favorite holiday movie & cozy up in your guest room
There’s nothing better than putting on your favorite Christmas movie & cozying up in one of the plush beds in any of our guest rooms or suites. Grab a bottle of champagne or one of the new winter cocktails from Brasserie SLO and you’re in holiday heaven.