From Film to Foodie Fests, We’ll See You in SD This Fall
As the sweltering summer sun begins to set and the first cool, crisp fall breeze blows into town, that’s a sure sign that it’s time for San Diego’s incredible array of fall festivals. Each year, SoCal residents flock to San Diego, a city known for its never-ending sunshine, to experience a different kind of fun in the form of delicious treats, eats and entertainment. Whether you’re looking to snack on some award-winning pumpkin pie, dance the night away to live music or simply soak up the cozy, autumn vibes, San Diego has you covered. So don your favorite sweater and get ready to experience fall at its finest as we showcase eight incredible fall festivals to attend in San Diego this season.
Date: Nov. 8-12
Kicking off our list is none other than one of San Diego’s most beloved annual traditions: the Coronado Island Film Festival. This charming island just over the bridge from downtown San Diego is almost a world of its own and has been a destination for Hollywood’s finest since the golden days of film. Since its launch in 2016, the festival has gathered and showcased works from filmmakers of all levels, bringing together artists, fans and industry leaders for five incredible days. Aside from exclusive screenings, celebrity meet-and-greets and live music, this year’s festival will also feature the presentation of several prestigious awards at the Leonard Maltin Industry Tribute Awards Gala at Loews Coronado Bay Resort. Presided over by highly respected film critic and historian Leonard Maltin, the gala brings together glitz and glamor to honor both industry legends as well as rising stars. So whether you are true film buff or are simply looking for an exciting foray into the world of cinema, be sure to add the Coronado Island Film Festival on your fall bucket list.
Date: Sept. 9-Oct. 31
Of course, no matter the season, no visit to San Diego would be complete without spending some time on the sandy shores of one of the city’s renowned boardwalks. Beachside Fall Fest at Belmont Park allows guests to do exactly that while also enjoying some fun fall festivities. The fest runs all the way until Halloween and features everything one could want at an outdoor fall festival: rides, games, pumpkin carving, sweets, treats and more! The fest is the perfect place to bring your kids as well, with free trick-or-treating starting at 5 p.m. on every Sunday in October and an exciting Glow N Float Pumpkin Patch!
Location: Mission Beach
Date: Nov. 8-12
No list of fall festivals would be complete without including at least one of San Diego’s numerous iconic foodie festivals, and the San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival more than meets the criteria. Hosted along San Diego’s gorgeous, glittering waterfront, this beloved event invites guests to experience and indulge in the art of fine wining and dining. Featuring an extensive array of specialty culinary experiences, exhibits, showcases and tastings courtesy of over 100 local and nationally renowned chefs, artisans and industry professionals, this festival is sure to send taste buds soaring.
Location: Port of San Diego
Date: Nov. 5
For nearly 40 years, the Carlsbad Village Street Faire has welcomed visitors from all over Southern California to experience one of the largest outdoor fairs in the country. Featuring over 900 different vendors showcasing everything from fine art to delicious food and beverages, this biannual event continues to draw crowds into the quaint streets of Carlsbad Village. And after taking one stroll through the rows upon rows of vendors, it is easy to see why. For anyone looking to shop, dine and explore one of the state’s most beloved events and areas, this is the event for you.
Date: Oct. 7
On Saturday, Oct. 7, San Diego is setting aside one of its most beautiful areas for what is sure to be one of the most mouthwatering events of the season. The highly anticipated Taste of North Park is set to welcome in dozens of local restaurants, food trucks, breweries, wineries and artisans as they flood North Park’s main street to offer up an unrivaled array of delicious eats. The event will also feature games, prizes and even live music, making it as entertaining as it is delicious. Be sure to snag your tickets in advance to ensure access to all the tasty treats being offered at this one-of-a-kind showcase.
Location: North Park
Date: Oct. 6-7
Each year, all across the globe, citizens gather for their city’s annual Oktoberfest, and San Diego is no exception. The Ocean Beach Oktoberfest takes all the beloved elements of this adored Bavarian holiday, including beer, brats and banter, and adds its own unique San Diego flavor—don’t expect any polkas here. This raucous event features everything from concerts to competitions, including the famous pretzel toss event. What ensures to be one of the most exciting and amplified events of the year, Ocean Beach’s Oktoberfest is perfect for those looking to dance the night away while sipping on some of the finest ale around.
Location: Ocean Beach
Date: Nov. 5
Looking for fun autumn festivities suited for the whole family? Hosted in San Diego’s iconic Gaslamp Quarter, Fall Back Festival allows guests of all ages to revel in the history and culture of San Diego while also enjoying classic fall faves like their famous pie-eating contest. Featuring fun educational events, exhibitions and activities in and around some of the area’s most historic sites, this event is sure to leave attendees with lasting memories and a heart full of fall spirit.
Location: Gaslamp Quarter
Date: Nov. 2
Finally, no list of fall festivities would be complete without mentioning one of the most iconic events of the season: Día de los Muertos. Luckily, Old Town San Diego takes it upon itself to celebrate this important event in Latin culture by annually hosting one of the coolest and most authentic Día de los Muertos celebrations around. Explore San Diego’s historic district while also enjoying authentic cuisine, music and events, including the spectacular candlelight procession. So whether you are looking to celebrate yourself or to explore San Diego’s rich and vibrant Hispanic history and culture, this festival is sure to delight.
Location: Old Town