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SeaWorld San Diego is a great place to celebrate the holiday season!
That’s because there’s a wonderful holiday event in this Southern California theme park. And that event is the SeaWorld Christmas Celebration.
In this Christmas SeaWorld San Diego guide, we’ll go over the fun things to do, holiday food and drink options, and where you can do your Christmas shopping in the park. And then we’ll share ways you can save money on your tickets!
SeaWorld Christmas Shows & Entertainment
A Joyous Celebration
This Broadway style show, new for 2022, is a lot of fun for the whole family. A Joyous Celebration combines favorite Christmas songs, upbeat dancing, and bright lights. Catch the outdoors show every night at Nautilus Amphitheater.
If you don’t want to worry about whether or not you’ll get a seat, you can purchase Reserved Seating for A Joyous Celebration for $6.99 per person.
A Stocking Full of Soul
In this new indoor show, Bryan Cheatham (of America’s Got Talent fame) and friends perform soulful holiday classics. You’ll see great singing, dancing, and even some favorite Christmas characters! You can watch A Stocking Full of Soul on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays at Mission Bay Theater.
Click here if you’d like to get Reserved Seating. It costs $7.99 per person.
A Christmas Wish Fireworks Show
Check out this year’s brand new fireworks show! This holiday fireworks celebration also includes thrilling pyrotechnics. You can view the fireworks on select nights:
- December 10, 2022
- December 16 – 17, 2022
- December 23 – 31, 2022
- January 6 – 8, 2023
Dolphin Island Christmas
New this year, Dolphin Island Christmas features high-flying Bottlenose Dolphins and the wonderful team who cares for them.
Clyde & Seamore’s Christmas Special
This spoof of a nighttime TV Christmas Special, new for 2022, stars (who else?) sea lions Clyde and Seamore.
This interactive tree lighting ceremony takes place nightly in Jingle Bell Square. And this is no ordinary Christmas tree – it’s 30 feet tall!
The Holly Pops and Holiday Hipsters
If you like acapella Christmas music, then you’ll be happy to know that there are two different groups of acapella Christmas carolers at SeaWorld San Diego. They will be entertaining guests throughout the park with creative arrangements of familiar holiday tunes. This is also new for 2022!
Donner and Blitzen’s Lazer Light Show
New this year, you can take in a colorful laser light show (set to a holiday soundtrack) nightly at the front of the theme park.
Santa’s Live Reindeer
In addition to having their own light show, Donner and Blitzen will also visit SeaWorld San Diego, all the way from the North Pole! You can meet them as well as write a letter to Santa with your Christmas wish list.
Is writing a letter not enough? Do you want to be able to tell the big guy himself in person? You can meet Santa in his village – and even get a photo with him! If you’d like to save time, you can purchase a Santa Priority Photo Access. This gives your group (of up to 6 people) priority line access. You’ll also get a photo package that includes 2 6X8 prints, 2 acrylic frames, 4 photo magnets, and a photo ornament.
You can also take your photo with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
Mrs. Claus’ Christmas Cavalcade
Several times a day, Mrs. Claus and some of her elf friends will make their way throughout the park. You can see the route they take on this park map here – it’s designated by the curving line of red snowflakes and diamonds.
Reindeer Round-Up Scavenger Hunt
Santa has gifts for all his reindeer, but they’re scattered all over the park. Find all of them on this scavenger hunt, and you’ll receive a special prize! You’ll need to purchase a Scavenger Hunt Map at The SeaWorld Store to participate.
The Holiday Brass
Listen to the festive, classic sounds of the SeaWorld Christmas Brass Band! You can find them at the Wild Arctic stage and throughout the theme park at select times.
Tunnel of Lights
Walk through – or dance your way through! – a glittering tunnel of over 5,000 lights. And those colorful lights are synced up to Christmas music!
Holiday Lights & Magic
And if you like lights, you’ll also be happy to know that there are holiday lights all over the park. This includes the 320 ft tall Skytower Tree of Lights, as well as palm trees lit like candy canes.
Very Merry VIP Tour
This holiday VIP tour is a way to make sure you’ll get the most out of your SeaWorld Christmas experience. And at $129.00 per person, it’s one of the more reasonably priced VIP tours I’ve seen at a theme park. Please note that your tour reservation requires a minimum of 2 people. Also, please note that park admission is not included in the price of the tour – you’ll need to purchase that separately.
Here’s what your special VIP experience includes:
- Private Tour Guide from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm
- Priority access to photo opportunity with Santa Claus
- Meet Reindeer and Mrs. Claus
- Hot Chocolate Souvenir Mug, along with complimentary refills
- Reserved show seating for Clyde and Seamore’s Christmas Show and Joyous Celebration
- Behind the Scenes look at Turtle Reef
Click here to reserve a Very Merry VIP Tour.
Christmas Celebration Reserved Seating Package
This isn’t its own show, but rather a way to get Reserved Seating to all of the following:
- Dolphin Island Christmas
- Clyde & Seamore’s Christmas Special
- A Stocking Full of Soul
- A Joyous Celebration
Prices depend on the date of your visit and start at $24.99/person. Click here to get the Reserved Seating Package for 4 shows.
SeaWorld Christmas Celebration Food & Drinks
There are a number of special seasonal offerings throughout SeaWorld San Diego.
Calypso Bay Smokehouse
- Chili and Cornbread
Christmas Delights Hut
- Loaded Garlic Mashed Potato Cup
- Tomato Bisque Soup in a Bread Bowl
Christmas Sweets Hut
- Cinnamon Roll
- Donut Holes
- Hot Chocolate
- Cheddar and Pot Roast Sandwich
- Turkey Pot Pie
- Abuelita Sugar and Marshmallow Dipping Sauce
- Chocolate Peppermint
- Hot Chocolate
Hibisco Modern Mexican
Shipwreck Reef Café
- Ham with Peach Brown Sugar Glaze, Scalloped Potatoes, and Green Bean Casserole
- Pumpkin Pie
Wild Arctic Bar
- Draft Beer
- Make it Jolly Hot Chocolate – Bailey’s, Peppermint Schnapps, and Frangelico
Santa’s Holly Jolly Brunch at Dine with Orcas
While the other locations have special holiday menu items, Santa’s Holly Jolly Brunch is an hour long dining experience. It’s a chef crafted meal you can enjoy next to Orca Whales, on a private poolside patio. And you’ll even enjoy a visit from Santa!
You can make same day reservations for this meal at the ticket booths or Guest Services just inside the park. However, that is only if space is still available. Advance reservations are recommended; you can make them here.
Holly Jolly Marketplace
This special seasonal gift shop includes lots of gifts, apparel, and souvenirs themed to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
The Christmas Shoppe
At this store, you can find lots of unique Christmas and Hanukkah gifts, including home decor, apparel, kitchen items, ornaments, and more.
SeaWorld Ticket Deals
In order to enjoy this fun holiday event, you’ll need SeaWorld San Diego tickets. And luckily, there are some great deals that will help you save money on park admission!
Tickets and Fun Cards
Right now, a one day ticket that you can use any day costs $109.99.
But for that exact same price, you can buy a two day ticket. You basically get the second day free!
And also the same price ($109.99), you can get a 2023 Fun Card. This will give you admission for the rest of 2022 and all of 2023! Now, there are blockout dates, which are the following: May 29, July 1, July 8, July 15, July 22, and July 29. But otherwise, you get basically over a year’s worth of admission. This is such a great deal!
So if you want to visit more than one day, the Fun Card is an outstanding option.
However, if you know you’ll only visit one day and you know the day of your visit, you should get a Date-Specific Ticket. You’ll have to commit to a specific date, but you could save up to $45 per ticket.
So, to summarize:
- Visiting only 1 day – get Date-Specific Ticket
- May visit multiple days – get a 2023 Fun Card (which includes the rest of 2022)
Click here to purchase a SeaWorld San Diego ticket or Fun Card.
There’s one other great option to consider, and that’s an Annual Pass. There are no blockout dates, you get discounts inside the park, you get free guest tickets for your friends or family, and you get free parking. And you even have the option to pay over 12 months instead of all of it upfront.
My favorite of the Annual Passes is the SeaWorld Platinum Pass (that’s what my family has). This one includes admission to all of the SeaWorld parks (in San Diego, San Antonio, and Orlando); the Busch Gardens parks (in Williamsburg and Tampa); the Sesame Place parks (in San Diego and Pennsylvania); Water Country USA (in Williamsburg); Aquatica (in San Antonio and Orlando); and Adventure Island (in Tampa).
And the SeaWorld San Diego Platinum Pass is only $270.00 (or $22.50 a month if you pay monthly). If you travel a lot, it’s definitely worth it.
Click here to purchase a SeaWorld San Diego Annual Pass.