Top San Diego Things to Do in January

San Diego Beer Fest at Liberty Station.

San Diego Brew Festival, Winter Waters, Whale Watching and more. Here are the top 25+ San Diego things to do in January.

Edited by Brooke Knetzger.


Viewpoint Brewing Co. 
Jan. 1. Start the new year off at Del Mar’s Viewpoint Brewing Co. The restaurant will be serving up its elevated gastropub fare from perfectly cooked eggs benedict and scottish eggs to modern classics like their churro French toast, fried chicken naan mi, and backyard burger. Don’t forget to pair your meal with mimosa flights, hard kombucha on draft and house brewed craft beer. 2201 San Diguieto Dr, Del Mar. 


Hotel Del Coronado
Jan. 1. Don’t missThe Del’s annual New Year’s Day champagne brunch! Guests will enjoy a lavish brunch in the Crown Room featuring a chilled seafood bar, regionally inspired dishes, international cuisine and carving stations alongside a gourmet Bloody Mary bar, made-to-order mimosas, and candy and dessert bar. $140 for adults, $50 for children ages 4-10 and complimentary for kids three and younger. 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado.


The Lafayette Hotel’s Hope 46
Jan. 1. North Park’s beloved hotel will be kicking off 2020 with a Bloody Mary bar and brunch at Hope 46. From 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. diners can look forward to classic American breakfast favorites such as buttermilk pancakes, huevos rancheros and eggs benedict as well as some Hope 46 specialities including the grilled chicken and bacon hash. 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park, 619.296.2101.


Winter Wonderland at Fairmont Grand Del Mar
Through Jan. 1. ‘Tis the season for celebrations at Fairmont Grand Del Mar with the second annual Winter Wonderland at The Grand. Local families and resort guests alike are invited to take a whimsical ride on a Ferris wheel or carrousel, snap a selfie with Santa around a festive 25-foot tree, and snack on s’mores by the fire. For the first time, Winter Wonderland at The Grand will feature an outdoor ice skating rink with over 5,000 square feet of ice featuring open skating as well as special ice shows on select dates. See website for additional information. 5300 Grand Del Mar Court, Del Mar.


San Diego International Auto Show
Through Jan. 1-5. Check out hundreds of model-year vehicles, plus preview the cards and trucks of tomorrow, at this annual event “where the cars are the stars.” San Diego Convention Center, 111 W. Harbor Drive, downtown.


Sunday Supper at Whisknladle 
Jan 5, 12, 19, 26. Head to the popular neighborhood eatery with the whole family for their new Sunday Suppers. Chef Ryan Johnston has created a special pre fixe menu, which includes an appetizer, entree and a dessert or beverage for $45 per person.  Every Sunday night. 1044 Wall Street, La Jolla.


Skating by the Sea 
Through Jan. 5. This spectacular beachfront ice rink features stunning views of the Pacific and benefits Make-A-Wish San Diego. Now you can reserve your own rink side lounge at Frostbite – A Place to Chill. Where guests will enjoy skating passes and plush 4 or 6 person seating around a roaring fire pit with full food and beverage service. Choose from your favorite holiday-themed libations or snacks and enjoy unlimited hot cocoa and coffee as you enjoy watching the beachfront ice skating. Through January 5, 2020. $30+. Hotel Del Coronado, 1500 Orange Ave, Coronado.


Rady’s Children’s Ice Rink
Through Jan. 5. Rady Children’s Hospital Auxiliary and Liberty Station will kick off the holiday season with outdoor ice skating at the Rady Children’s Ice Rink at Liberty Station. The rink will stay open daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. except on Thanksgiving and Christmas, and will be featured in Liberty Station’s Tree Lighting & Holiday Festivites on Friday, Nov. 29. Closes January 5. $15 adults;13 children.


Bloomsday at North Coast Repertory Theatre.


Bloomsday at North Coast Repertory Theatre
Premieres Jan. 8. If you’ve ever wished you could go back and have a second chance at a decision you made back in your 20s, this winsome tale will simmer in your mind long after the play ends. Steven Dietz’s lyrical new Irish love story, set amidst tourists exploring the pubs and streets of James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” transports us into a compassionate world of history, humor and heartache. Filled with humor, this emotional story captures the intensity of experiences that pass by fleetingly as an older couple retraces their steps to discover their younger selves. Through February 2. 987 Lomas Santa Fe, Solana Beach.


The Humans at San Diego Repertory Theatre
Premieres Jan. 9. Erik Blake has brought his family from Pennsylvania to celebrate Thanksgiving at his daughter’s new apartment in lower Manhattan. As darkness falls outside the ramshackle, pre-war duplex, eerie things start to go bump in the night. Soon, family tensions reach a boiling point. Playwright Stephen Karam takes a look at the hopes and heartbreaks of the modern American family in this uproariously funny and deeply chilling drama. Winner of the 2016 Tony Award for Best Play. Through February 2. 79 Horton Plaza, Gaslamp.


San Diego Brew Festival
Jan. 11. This annual festival features 150 beers from more than 70 different breweries. Pair your hops and malts with bites from Mastiff Sausage Company, Cousins Main Lobster, The Groovy Greek and more in Food Truck Alley while enjoying live music. Proceeds form the event will benefit Noah’s Bark which rescues dogs from shelters and finds them permanent homes. VIP noon-4 p.m., GA 1-4 p.m. $55 VIP, $45 GA. Ingram Plaza at Liberty Station, 2455 Crushing Road, Point Loma.


Yoga in the Rotunda
Jan. 11, 25. Take a deep breath and center your mind to start the weekend off right. Yoga One’s knowledgeable teachers lead this all-levels flow class in the Museum of Man’s historic rotunda. Don’t forget to bring your own mat, towel and water. 8:30-9:30 a.m. $5 members, $10 non-members. 1350 El Prado, Balboa Park.


Dear Evan Hansen 
Through Jan. 12. A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to finally fit in. Dear Evan Hansen is the deeply personal and profoundly contemporary musical about life and the way we live it. Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., downtown.


Executive Chef of Serēa, Chef JoJo Ruiz.

Winter Waters at Serea
Jan. 13. San Diego’s only sustainability-focused dinner series continues. Chef JoJo is bringing Chef James Syhadout to Serēa for the series, who holds two Michelin Stars for Commis in Oakland, California. Dinner includes items from the raw bar, cold and hot appetizers, a vegetable plate, entree with shared sides, dessert and liquor pairing. 1500 Orange Ave, Coronado.


Lasagna Cooking Class at Giardino
Jan. 18. Head to Lemon Grove to learn the basics of lasagna making, including the how-to for Giardino’s infamous recipe. Class and lasagna to eat is priced at $35. Reserve the class at 8131 Broadway, Lemon Grove.


August Wilson’s Jitney 
Premieres Jan. 19. In 1970s Pittsburgh, the unlicensed cab drivers in a Hill District garage fight to save their business and their livelihoods as their neighborhood gentrifies around them. As the drivers strive to fulfill their hopes and dreams, Wilson’s bracing command of drama and thrilling sense of language conjure stage brilliance. Through February 23. The Old Globe, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park.


Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade
Jan. 19. Celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. at this 40th annual waterfront parade along San Diego Bay. Enjoy an afternoon of bands, floats and drill teams as they march along Harbor Drive. The parade is coordinated by the Zeta Sigma Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., the oldest African American fraternity in America. 2 – 5 p.m. Downtown,


2020 Carlsbad Marathon & Half Marathon 
Jan. 19. Enjoy a runner’s paradise on this course that weaves through Carlsbad Village and along the oceanfront Pacific Coast Highway. The Tri-City Medical Center Carlsbad Marathon and Half Marathon’s spectacular coastal course and ideal weather conditions, along with live music at every mile marker and thousands of cheering spectators, will keep runners motivated for the duration of the course. All participants will receive a long-sleeve shirt and pullover jacket. See website for course maps and start times. 760.692.2900.


San Diego Restaurant Week 
Jan. 19-26. Enjoy fabulous dining for less when over 180 restaurants throughout the county offer prix-fixe, three-course meals. Visit website for list of participating restaurants. No tickets or passes necessary. Reservations recommended.


The Great Leap 
Premieres Jan. 22. When an American basketball team travels to Beijing for an exhibition game in 1989, the drama goes deeper than the strain between countries. For two men with a past and one teen with a future, the game is a chance to claim personal victories on and off the court. Tensions rise right up to the final buzzer as a pivotal moment in history collides with the action in the arena. Sharp-witted and weighty, this perceptive new play explores the cultural and political risks of raising your voice and standing your ground. Cygnet Theatre, 4040 Twiggs St., Old Town.


Farmers Insurance Open 
Jan. 23-26. San Diego’s most anticipated pro golf tournament has featured legends and past champions such as Tiger Woods, Nick Watney, Jason Day and Brandt Snedeker. The action-packed week includes practice rounds for the PGA Tour players, pro-am tournaments, women’s and men’s days, a junior clinic, military appreciation activities and celebrity after-parties. Torrey Pines Golf Course, 11480 N. Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla.


San Diego Sunroad Boat Show
Jan. 23-26. Calling all boaters! Don’t miss the chance to check out services and products, free boating seminars, boat rides, libations and more. In addition to the tremendous boats, there will also be a plethora of marine vendors and electronics with the latest nautical products and services, boating seminars, as well as food and beverages for attendees to enjoy a day on San Diego Bay.


Pop-up Arcade Night
Jan. 29.  
Barrel Republic’s Oceanside location will host a Madden Tournament Game Night. The Pop-Up Arcade Night will feature a variety of game systems and game favorites such as Madden, Techmo Bowl and Blitz. Aside from games, guests can enjoy brews, bites and football fun. 7-10 p.m. 215 N Coast Hwy, Oceanside, CA 92054.


San Diego Black Film Festival 
Jan. 29-Feb. 2. Catch more than 100 films across all genres that celebrate African-American cinema at this annual event, one of the largest black film festivals in the country. Plus, celebrity appearances, filmmaker panels and parties. See website for film list, locations and ticket prices. Theatre Box, 701 Fifth Ave., Gaslamp.


Rincon Reservation Road Brewery Opens 
January 30. The Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians will open Rincon Reservation Road Brewery (3R Brewery) on January 30, the first certified Native American owned and operated brewery on tribal land in Southern California. Adjacent to Harrah’s Southern California Resort’s casino in Valley Center, the brewery and beer offerings will not only reflect the brand but will also tell the story of the rich history of the tribe. 777 South Resort Drive, Valley Center.


Cocktails & Comedians
Jan. 30. 
Enjoy an impressive martini selection, bites and lots of laughs at ginger’s Cocktails and Comedians night. The underground lounge is located in the heart of the Gaslamp, directly below barleymash. 8 p.m. 600 Fifth Ave, Gaslamp.


Premium Whale & Dolphin Watching Adventure Cruises
Through January. Calling all whale, dolphin, sea lion, and sea bird lovers! Hop on board a Hornblower for a unforgettable experience on the open ocean. The 3.5-hour tours include a live narration by experienced captains and on-board naturalists from the San Diego Natural History Museums. Guests will stay cozy and comfortable with both indoor and outdoor seating with panoramic views and a snack bar featuring hot food, a full bar, and souvenirs. See website for cruise times and pricing. Pier 2, 970 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego. Tickets 



Photos: North Coast Repertory Theatre courtesy North Coast Repertory Theatre. Serea courtesy J Public Relations. 




Sign up for FREE to receive our exclusive Weekend Roundup!

Get the best things to do in our favorite SoCal spots delivered to your inbox every week

Los Angeles

Orange County

San Diego