Imagine a 25-foot Christmas tree decorated in lights and ornaments of brilliant hues. This is the centerpiece of Winter Wonderland at the Grand, a place where memories are forged, and traditions begin. Held at the Fairmont Grand Del Mar in the northern portion of San Diego, the celebration is not to be missed.
From rides on a magical Ferris wheel to spinning in joy on the carousel, the kiddos will feel as if they have been transported to a magical land. A frozen slide to be tried over and over is part of the fun. S’mores and Santa await, too. Adults will enjoy the champagne garden and watching performances on the ice skating rink. Try a twirl or two of your own on the ice. Take the time to do a bit of shopping and then relax to the sound of carolers.
Being near the ocean, San Diego offers a variety of things to do while you are in town. Plan a day trip to Coronado Beach or La Jolla Cove and take a walk surfside. Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve is the place to walk and take in the beauty of San Diego’s most popular state park.
Finding accommodation in the region describes as camping at its best. Gather the family around and make a decision on the type of trip you want this to be. Then, pack your motorhome and set your GPS for the sunny California coast. Set your own schedule for this family-friendly location as you forge new traditions together.
The cost for Winter Wonderland at the Grand varies depending on what you want to do when there. Entrance is free to wander the event, but extras like the s’mores are available for purchase. If you would like to take the kids to a special performance like a Nutcracker Holiday Tea (held on select dates only), the cost is between $40 and $80, with a portion of the funds going to charity.
Routes US-5 along the coast and US-15 inland head toward the Fairmont Grand Del Mar, just about an hour's drive north of the heart of San Diego. Expect gorgeous scenery, so keep your eyes on the road and have a trusty navigator by your side. The resort borders on Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, which means your views as you drive will include flora and wildlife in abundance. Familiarize yourself with 511sd.com for alerts in regards to weather and traffic.
You can park at the hotel for a fee, although you may want to call ahead to get specifics on where to leave your rig if you have a large RV. The resort lot may be busy, so best to know where to park before you arrive.
Taking a bus or trolley to the event from San Diego is not viable. Taxiing or using a ridesharing service to get to the Fairmont Grand Del Mar is the best bet if you don’t want to drive your rig there. Do take advantage of the excellent bus and trolley service when you head into town for entertainment, though. The USS Midway Museum, for example, is a sight not to miss near the city's center.
You cannot camp or stay in your rig in the hotel parking lot overnight. Plenty of fabulous options await, however, so be sure to stay near the city and explore the area. Choose a spot along the coast or venture all points north, west, and south for great accommodations.
Beachside, mountain-view, and forested havens are just a few of the options for camping near San Diego, often in the heart of the region and just south of Winter Wonderland. Decide if your main activity will be hiking, birdwatching, golfing or riding the surf and go from there.
Silver Strand State Beach Campground is a park that caters to those who travel by RV; overnight camping is limited to self-contained vehicles only, no tenting or sleeping outside the camper allowed. San Diego Metro KOA Resort also sits about an hour's drive to the south of the Grand.
Wear comfy footwear for wandering the Winter Wonderland at the Grand. Plan on walking a fair bit as you move from one end of the event to another. The kids should have sturdy shoes for playing on the frozen slide over and over again. The terrain is grass and relatively level for pushing a stroller or wheelchair.
Plan outdoor activities while in this beautiful region of the country. Treks like Iron Mountain Trail and Oak Canyon Trail are recommended. Look at the respective websites to determine if the trails are suitable for all family members. Then, layer your clothing and head out. Winter Wonderland at the Grand calls for long sleeves, jeans, and maybe a vest to throw on top for a cool evening.
Extra blankets, bug spray, flashlights, sunscreen, and refillable water bottles should top your supplies list. Hooks for hanging over the bathroom door are ideal for drying out wet clothing. Put adequate hangers in the closets as well, so that you have lots of room for jackets and sweatshirts. Be sure to have clamps for hooking up your electrical and water supply.
California is one of the top hiking destinations in the country, and you can easily enjoy every minute. Do watch out for snakes, though, as they love the topography of the state as much as visitors do. If you come upon a snake, leave it alone and walk away. If you have one visiting your state park campsite, let the park ranger know, and they will safely remove it.
An important part of camping in California is adhering to the fire bans. Depending on the time of year, forest fires are a major problem in the state. Exercise extreme caution when cooking. One-pot mac n’ cheese is a winner with the kids, as is campfire pizza. Pack adequate cleaning supplies to keep a pristine kitchen without too much effort.
Japanese and Korean restaurants abound in San Diego and are quite popular. Fisherman stew is a favorite European style dish, and East Coast steak tips are another. No matter your taste, variety awaits close by the Fairmont Grand Del Mar. After a day at the celebration, stop for a meal before heading back to camp.
A number of restaurants make their home at the Fairmont Grand Del Mar. Take a meal there or indulge in drinks and refreshments at the Winter Wonderland event as you watch the entertainment. Holiday shopping is on the agenda, too, so be sure to plan on picking up a few gifts for the folks back home.
Security officers at Winter Wonderland at the Grand ensure that all attendees are safe and abiding by the rules of the resort. When leaving your rig for any amount of time, secure the doors and windows and stow valuables out of sight. At night, park under lighting.
San Diego and surrounding areas are known for windy conditions. Each evening, listen to the weather forecast and, if necessary, stow outdoor furniture and lower your awning. In California, there is fun to be had rain or shine as long as you are prepared with the proper outdoor gear. Pack raincoats and rubber boots for everyone and take a walk along the shore in the rain. You never know what the wind will blow into the region.
A well-stocked first-aid kit is a necessity for the avid RVer and family. Exploration of exciting sights and destinations means that the occasional bump or bruise on an outing is bound to occur. Bandaids, gauze, scissors, tape, and antibiotic cream are all you need to fix up a scrape or cut. Hosptial and pharmacy options abound in San Diego and will likely be your closest options from most campgrounds. A small pharmacy and clinic may be able to help with some matters within a 10-minute drive of the Winter Wonderland at the Grand.