Holiday attractions in Los Angeles to see with the kids By Mimi Slawoff
Downtown on Ice at Pershing Square (Holiday Ice Rink Downtown Los Angeles)
Santa visits, holiday sing-alongs and ice skating under the stars are just a few ways to celebrate the Christmas season with kids in the City of Angels. It’s also one of the few times you can see snow (with a little magic) at the beach in L.A.
Here are 10 holiday activities to enjoy with kids in L.A.:
Downtown on Ice at Pershing Square
Rain or shine, you can ice skate in Downtown L.A. through Jan. 19, 2015. Each session is 60 minutes. Skate Helpers are on hand to guide little ones under 48-inches tall who are able to stand on their own. Bring your own skates or rent a pair for $3. Skate session: $9 per person.
Reindeer Romp and Zoo Lights, Los Angeles Zoo
Zoo Lights at the LA Zoo (Los Angeles Zoo)
Hear sleigh bells jingling, meet Santa and his reindeer and make holiday crafts at the zoo when it transforms into a winter wonderland – L.A. style – through Jan. 4, 2015. Come sundown, Zoo Lights brightens the zoo with illuminated animal decorations and family-friendly activities under the stars.
Chill at Queen Mary, Long Beach
Experience North Pole temperatures in sunny SoCal at The Ice Kingdom, a13,000-square foot frozen igloo featuring holiday sculptures at the famous Queen Mary ship through Jan. 11, 2015. More family fun includes slides, ice tubing and skating. Join Santa and Mrs. Claus for breakfast on Saturdays. Parkas are provided for the ice chamber – a chilling nine degrees, brrr! Remember to bring jackets, hats and gloves and to wear closed-toe shoes. Live music and carolers round out festivities. Tickets from $29.99. Kids 3 and under admitted free.
Music Center Holiday Sing-Along
Gather the family for traditional Christmas carols under the stars from 6.30 – 8 pm Dec. 19 at the Music Center Plaza. Lyrics sheets are provided for holiday favorites, such as “O Christmas Tree,” “Silver Bells,” “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” This annual, popular event is free, but tickets are required to participate. Distribution starts at 6 pm.
LA County Holiday Celebration
The free, three-hour multi-cultural show includes more than 20 choirs, music ensembles and dance troupes at the beautiful Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (Dec. 24). Doors open at 2.30 pm and guests are welcome to come and go as they please throughout the show. Reservations and tickets are not necessary; parking is free.
Grinchmas at Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal City
Grinchmas at Universal Studios Hollywood (Universal Studios)
Celebrate the holidays with the Whos of Whoville, the whimsical characters from Dr. Seuss’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” from Dec. 6, 2014 – Jan. 3, 2015. Meet the Whos and take photos with the Grinch and his faithful dog Max. The fun continues at Universal Citywalk, where Santa’s Snow Zone takes center stage. Live holiday entertainment headlines at 5 Towers on select dates.
The Nutcracker, Los Angeles Ballet
The Nutcracker (Los Angeles Ballet)
Clara’s favorite toys come to life in this classic holiday production Dec. 13 and 14 at the Dolby Theatre. The delightful story centers on young Clara and her beloved Nutcrackers Prince and their adventures to the Land of Snow, the battle with the Mouse King and his army, and many more enchanting scenes.
Original Farmers Market, Los Angeles
Eat, shop and be merry at L.A.’s famous market Dec. 19 – 24. Enjoy free seasonal music, strolling caroler and decorated shops and food stalls. Notice that the ornaments on the Christmas tree are miniature versions of the Farmers Market green wooden shopping cart. There’s also a Hanukkah celebration featuring songs, children’s crafts and the construction of a giant Lego menorah on Dec. 21.
(MORE: Need a kid-friendly hotel in Los Angeles? Browse the best rates for the holidays.)
Winterlit, Santa Monica
Winterlit in Santa Monica (Santa Monica Bay Events)
This annual event brings snow and holiday fun to Downtown Santa Monica. See it snow every Thursday evening beginning at 6 pm and enjoy free activities, such as karaoke, children’s crafts, and holiday movie screenings. Don’t miss a chance to ice skate near the beach. The ICE at Santa Monica skating rink is open through Jan. 19, 2015. Winterlit takes place at Wilshire Boulevard at Third Street Promenade.
Rodeo Drive Holiday Lights, Beverly Hills
This posh neighborhood celebrates the holidays with 16 full-size Baccarat chandeliers, iridescent palm trees and nearly 150,000 lights between Santa Monica and Wilshire Boulevards. Santa and Mrs. Claus are coming to town Dec. 6 and will visit with kids on weekends until Christmas.