San Diego Bay Parade of Lights

Sunday, December 8 & 15, 2013
(Two consecutive Sundays)
Time: 5:30pm – 9pm
Where: San Diego Bay
Embarcadero (map)
Phone: (619) 224-2240
More info: Event website

Holiday Parade Highlights

With more than 80,000 spectators expected, the San Diego Bay Parade of Lights features boats decorated for the holiday season.

This year’s event celebrates “The Sounds of Christmas” with boats of all kinds judged for creative lighting, decorations and crowd-engaging fun. More than 100 vessels will take to the water for the parade.

Parade of Lights Route

Led by the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter, the San Diego Bay Parade of Lights begins at the east end of Shelter Island and runs eastward, past Harbor Island to North Embarcadero.

From there, the lit boat concession turns south along the Embarcadero near to the 10th Street Terminal. Then the parade turns toward Coronado, crossing the bay to the Marriott Coronado Hotel and west to Ferry’s Landing, finishing at bouy22a. (map)

Best Viewing Areas

For boaters wishing to view the boat light parade, a good viewing area is where the parade route turns for Coronado, near the 10th Street Terminal. For landlubbers, good viewing areas are Harbor Island, the Embarcadero, Seaport Village, and Embarcadero Marina Park North or South near Seaport Village. Best to arrive early for good parking and a good spot.

The boat concession takes about one hour to one and a half hours to pass any given point along the parade route.

Approximate Arrive Locations

Watch the Parade Aboard the Berkeley

View the Parade of Lights from the Maritime Museum ship Berkeley. Your Parade of Lights Party ticket includes: Paid admission to the Maritime Museum, explore our historic collection of ships while you’re at the party or before. One of the best views of the Parade on San Diego Bay. Seasonal Music. Holiday menu of slow roasted carved roast beef, smoked pit ham, scalloped potatoes, winter blend salad, fresh cut steamed vegetables and dinner rolls/butter. Assorted holiday desserts, coffee hot tea, hot chocolate, eggnog, and a no host (cash)bar. You must have a reservation for this event.

Other Information

San Diego Trolley

The San Diego Trolley has a station near the Convention Center, located at 2nd Avenue & J Street see map. For more info about the Trolley or bus service, click here.


  • Metered spaces along Harbor Drive Free on Sunday
  • Allright Parking (Broadway & Harbor Dr.) Paid
  • Ace Parking at B St. Pier Paid
  • Seaport Village Paid (Two hours free with purchase)
  • Parking Lot in front of Fish Market Restaurant north of Seaport Village Metered
  • Ace Parking at the County Administration Building Paid
  • Harbor Island Free but limited
  • Shelter Island Free