7 Ho Ho Ho-liday Events in Greater Palm Springs

These Activities Are Sure to Make Your Season Merry and Bright

The holidays are here, and while our desert region may not experience a lot of snowfall, there’s still plenty of merrimaking taking place! From dazzling light displays and cozy movie nights under the stars to parades and festive holiday feasts, it’s easy to see why this season is the best time of the year. So, pour yourself a cup of cocoa and gear up for a festive December in Greater Palm Springs. Here’s everything the desert has in store to make up for the lack of snow! Palm Springs Holiday Events


What: Merry Movie Nights

When: Dec. 4, 11, 18

Where: The Gardens on El Paseo, Palm Desert

Why: Nothing beats a cozy movie under the stars! And this December, you and your family can enjoy all the classic holiday flicks at The Gardens on El Paseo. On December 4, 11 and 18, a movie will be shown—think Frozen, Elf and The Santa Clause—on the center lawn in front of Saks Fifth Avenue! Bring you blankets and favorite holiday treats, and prepare for a magical evening under the desert sky. Tickets cost $7 for adults and children ages 3-16 are $5, while 2 and under are free.

Palm Springs Holiday Events

What: Holidays at Renaissance Esmeralda

When: Dec. 23-Jan. 2

Where: Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa, Indian Wells

Why: While holidays are typically spent at home with family, nothing beats a festive staycation! If you’re itchin’ for a change of scenery this year, head to Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa, Indian Wells for an 11-day holiday extravaganza your whole family will love! From activities like holiday crafting and cookie decorating for the kids to a Holiday Punch Bowl celebration for the adults, you’re sure to love everything this beloved Indian Wells resort has planned.


What: Wildlights

Credit: Sal Cavazos

When: December 3, 4, 10, 11, 17-24 and 26-30, from 6-9 p.m.

Where: The Living Desert Zoo & Gardens, Palm Desert

Why: Winter nights in Palm Desert just got a whole lot brighter! The Living Desert Zoo & GardensWildlights is now in its 29th year of thrilling crowds, and each night will feature more than one million shining lights. Come witness the zoo transform into a dazzling winter wonderland as you stroll through the merry and “bright” displays.

Palm Springs Holiday Events

What: Santa’s Miracle on the Tarmac Drive Through

Credit: Brad Graverson / Daily Breeze

When: Dec. 18-22, from 5:30- 8:30 p.m.

Where: Palm Springs Air Museum

Why: On Dec. 17, Santa will fly into Palm Springs Air Museum and will stay to wave to the kids from Dec. 18-22! This drive-through event on the tarmac will feature twinkling Christmas lights, and each car will receive a special goody bag. Visit www.palmspringsairmuseum.org for more details on this spectacular event!

What: Sounds of the Season Holiday Jazz Brunch

Credit: Spencer Imbrock on Unsplash

When: Dec 12 at 11 a.m.

Where: PS UNDERGROUND, Palm Springs

Why: Your favorite local supper club is spicing up the season with a holiday jazz brunch you won’t want to miss! PS Underground has assembled a dynamic cast of musicians and performers to ring in the holidays in a spectacular way. In addition to free-flowing bloody marys, mimosas and hot spiced wine and cider, David Horgen is preparing a four-course meal that’ll bring on all the nostalgia of Christmas past.

Palm Springs Holiday Events

What: Holiday Dining at Lulu and Acqua California Bistros

When: Dec 24, 25, 31

Where: Lulu California Bistro (Palm Springs) and Acqua California Bistro (Rancho Mirage)

Why: On Christmas Eve, Lulu and Acqua are serving up a delicious menu of holiday specials, including dishes like oven-roasted turkey, seafood linguine, turkey pot pie, chicken cordon bleu and over 70 choices of delicious California bites. The restaurants are also offering a four-course feast on Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve! For more information on these events, visit www.lulupalmsprings.com or www.acquaranchomirage.com


What: Parade of Lights and Holiday Festival

When: Dec. 11, from 5:45-10 p.m.

Where: Desert Hot Springs

Why: Join the community of Desert Hot Springs for their annual Parade of Lights and Holiday Festival, which starts at the intersection of Palm Dr and Mission Lakes Blvd and ends at Palm Dr and Second St. After the parade, visitors can head to city hall for a celebratory holiday festival, featuring free cotton candy, carnival rides, pictures with Santa, food from local vendors and a live musical performance by HindSite!

Palm Springs Holiday Events

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