‘Tis the season, Sacramento! With so many holiday events, light displays and activities, there’s no shortage of festive fun to be had here in Sacramento this time of year. It’s time to make your holiday bucket list, check it twice, and make sure these Sacramento holiday happenings are on it.


Old Sacramento Waterfront Christmas Tree during the holidays

Image Courtesy of: Downtown Sac

Get in the Holiday Spirit at the Old Sacramento Waterfront

There’s snow place like the Old Sacramento Waterfront during the holidays. From Theatre of Lights to the 60-foot decorated Christmas tree, holiday market, and holiday bars, the Old Sacramento Waterfront will be nothing short of magical this season.

For more information, read our guide to the Old Sacramento Waterfront’s holiday happenings


The Jungle Bird Holiday Decor

Image Courtesy of: Francisco Chavira

Make Your Spirits Bright at a Holiday Pop-Up Bar

Whether you’ve been naughty or nice this year, treat yourself to a jolly good time at a Sacramento holiday pop-up bar. Bars like The Snug, Butterscotch Den, Jungle Bird, and Bottle & Barlow have all decked the halls from floor to ceiling with holiday décor, complete with festive cocktails.

For more information, read our guide to Sacramento’s holiday pop-up bars.


Each year, this neighborhood in East Sacramento puts on some of the best festive light displays in the city.

Image Courtesy of: Lisa Nottingham Photography

Cruise Through the Fab 40s on the Sac Brew Bike

Grab your friends and family and enjoy the holiday season aboard the Sac Brew Bike’s 90-minute light tour through the Fab 40s from Dec. 1-29. Don’t forget to break out the cookies and cocoa, as Sac Brew Bike allows you to bring your own snacks and non-alcoholic drinks on board.

To book your tour, visit SacBrewBike.com or call (916) 952-7973.


Get Festive with Explore Midtown’s 12 Days of Midtown

Experience the holiday magic of Midtown Sacramento during Explore Midtown’s 12 Days of Midtown. From holiday treats to holiday farmers markets, there’s plenty of jolly good fun to be had in Midtown during the holidays this year.

See what’s happening during 12 Days of Midtown at exploremidtown.org/12-days-of-midtown/.


Downtown Sacramento Ice Rink

Image Courtesy of: Downtown Sac

Go Ice-Skating at the Downtown Sacramento Ice Rink

Sharpen your skates, perfect your triple axel and don’t miss gliding on down to the Downtown Sacramento Ice Rink from now through Jan. 15, 2024. Ice skating at Ali Youssefi Square makes for the perfect holiday outing whether it be a festive night out with the family, a night out with friends, or even a first date.

For more details, read our guide to visiting the Downtown Sacramento Ice Rink.


Take Photos with Santa at the Arden Fair Mall

No holiday season is complete without photos with Santa. Wrangle the whole family, put on your holiday best, and head to the Arden Fair Mall to snap a photo with Santa.

Pre-book your visit at ardenfair.com/SantaPhotos.


Go on the Sacramento River Fox Train's Magical Christmas Train

Looking for a magical night with the whole family? Hop aboard the Sacramento River Fox Train’s Magical Christmas Train to meet Santa and his elves and enjoy all sorts of festive fun this holiday season.

For more information, visit riverfoxtrain.com/experiences/magical-christmas-train/.


Imaginarium Sacramento

Image Courtesy of: Jim Hamilton

Check Out Sacramento's Largest Holiday Lights Display

Light up your holiday season with a trip to Imaginarium “Holiday Lights, Fairytale Delights” at Cal Expo. Packed with over 5 million lights, Imaginarium features dozens of festive light displays, circus shows, ice skating, carnival rides, live entertainment, and more.

For more information, read our guide to Imaginarium.


See the Sacramento Ballet’s Nutcracker

Escape into the magic of the holiday season with Sacramento Ballet’s Nutcracker. This beloved holiday performance brings the classic tale to life with 200+ local youth dancers, alongside Sac Ballet’s professional company.

For more information, visit: www.sacballet.org/events/nutcracker-2023/.


Temple Coffee

Image Courtesy of: Francisco Chavira

Try a Holiday-Themed Drink from a Sacramento Coffee Shop

There’s nothing quite sipping on a warm drink on a brisk winter night. Don’t miss the chance to try holiday-themed drinks from Sacramento coffee shops like Temple Coffee Roasters, Pachamama, and Old Soul Co.


The Moppet Shoppe Midtown Christmas Holidays

Image Courtesy of: Francisco Chavira

Grab a Last-Minute Gift from a Sacramento Small Business

Stressed about what to get that special someone in your life this holiday season? Give the gift of Sacramento to your loved ones this year by buying them a gift from one of Sacramento’s many small businesses.

Read our guide to shopping local during the holidays in Sacramento HERE.


christmas tree in front of Sacramento's Capitol building

Image Courtesy of: Francisco Chavira

Check out the California State Capitol's Christmas Tree

Bundle up and sip some hot cocoa as you take in the beauty of the California State Capitol’s Christmas tree. This year’s 67-foot tree is decorated with over 10,000 lights and about 200 handcrafted ornaments.


Go See a Holiday Play

A holiday play filled with festive tunes is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. Some of the holiday plays happening in Sacramento this year include: Dr’ Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical at the SAFE Credit Union Convention Center, ‘Tis the Season: Around the World at the Sofia Tsakopoulos Center For the Arts, and Georgiana and Kitty: Christmas at Pemberley at Capital Stage.