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Holiday Family-Friendly Itinerary

Looking for family holiday getaway ideas? Consider a road trip to Orange County, home to some of SoCal’s most exciting holiday events! At the heart of Orange County, and just about an hour south of Los Angeles and 90 minutes north of San Diego, Costa Mesa is a perfect home base for the family for a weekend or longer. So, grab the kids and head out for a happy holiday adventure.
The Nutcracker photo by Doug Gifford
WHAT TO DO
There are plenty of family-friendly holiday events in Costa Mesa. A Christmas Carol at South Coast Repertory has been an Orange County holiday tradition for over 40 years. Enjoy the timeless tale of Ebenezer Scrooge as he learns the true meaning of Christmas. Winterfest OC festival features snow, ice slide, carnival, a visit from Santa and over a million lights.  American Ballet Theatre's "The Nutcracker" is a dazzling experience, accompanied by Pacific Symphony. Plus, the new Orange County Museum of Art is open and FREE for all visitors! Visit our calendar for a full list of upcoming events.
Table of food from The Crack Shack
WHERE TO EAT
You’ll find a wide selection of family-friendly dining in Costa Mesa. The Crack Shack, from Top Chef winner Richard Blais, serves up the freshest, free-range chicken. Kids love to play cornhole while waiting for their food and parents can enjoy a refreshing beverage from the bar. Pitfire Artisan Pizza is another option, sure to please any pizza lover and was named one of the top kid-friendly restaurants in Costa Mesa by Gayot. Many of our breweries are kid-friendly and walkable, so parents can enjoy a little adult-focused experience. Other great family options include Costa Mesa-original restaurant, Wahoo’s Fish Tacos, and Playa Mesa Mexican Kitchen.
The CAMP outdoor area
WHERE TO SHOP
Capture special moments by visiting Costa Mesa’s unique outdoor malls – The LAB and The CAMP. Local retailers sell jewelry, clothing, eco-friendly items products for the outdoor enthusiast. Located just across the street from each other, these eco-friendly campuses are perfect for grabbing a bite and sitting on a bench or swing nearby to enjoy the local passersby and the unique art dabbled through the spaces. Check out the colorful oil-can water fountain at The LAB – it’s a popular photo opp.
Residence Inn by Mariott in Costa Mesa
WHERE TO STAY
Ramada Inn & Suites offers an ideal location in Costa Mesa, our closest hotel to the beach. Rooms with kitchenettes, a beautiful pool and restaurant on site make it convenient for families. For a little more space and the convenience of a full kitchen, check out Residence Inn by Marriott offering a full breakfast bar and evening happy hour, plus swimming, barbecue pits, volleyball and basketball courts. See top Costa Mesa holiday hotel deals here!
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