Summers in San Diego are probably some of the best summers you’ll come across in the US. Really! The weather is perfect, the ocean is cool, not a cloud in the sky…and beyond all of the cafes, restaurants and music venues to keep you busy during those gorgeous summer days and lively summer nights, San Diego has a number of fabulous summer festivals, annually. To help you get ready for your perfect San Diego summer, here is our list of San Diego Summer Festivals for 2016!
As mentioned in one of my recent posts, the San Diego County Fair is located on the grand grounds of Del Mar, the San Diego County Fair runs from June 3rd to July 4th. This event is truly for everyone. This year’s theme is “Mad About the Fair” and gives a nod to the Mad Hatter and Alice in Wonderland. According to the coordinators, “We will make the Fair into a grand-scale tea party featuring the renowned Lewis Carroll classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, fused with influences from steampunk, cosplay, great literature, whacky machinery, and all the fun and magic you have come to expect. Get ready for outlandish landscapes, crazy rides, unique foods, fabulous festivals and enthralling entertainment. Appearances by your favorite Wonderland characters and more will start your summer of “adventure and imagination.” With a huge array of food carts, games, rides, and shopping, you’ll have a jam packed day to enjoy. And the best way to end it? By attending one of the mainstage concerts the fair puts on. This year’s lineup includes Lady Antebellum, Switchfoot, Brian Wilson and Kenny Rogers. You’ll also have the option to enjoy a bluegrass festival or some great comedians in attendance. Talk about an awesome San Diego Summer Festival!
On Sunday, June 26th from 11am until 3pm, Adam’s Avenue will be swarming with representatives from 30 restaurants, cafes, pubs, wine bars and eateries. This ‘gastronomic trek’ offers a fabulous tasting tour in this historical and funky neighbourhood. A delicious and enjoyable way to spend your afternoon!
With over 70,000 visitors on event day, this summer festival overflows along Newport Avenue and onto the beachfront of Ocean Beach. A remarkable number of local companies, individuals and families come together with vats of their homemade chili, facing off all day as they playfully feed the masses. While you roam from vendor to vendor rating the competition, you can also enjoy a beer garden, numerous food, clothing, jewelry and other local product vendors, and take in the live music on the large stage along the beach. A truly eclectic, local and enjoyable summer festival in San Diego. Come on out on June 25th, 2016.
The Imperial Beach Sun and Sea Festival is a fabulous event to bring the kids to enjoy. World class sand castle sculpture artists compete as visitors enjoy the amazing sand art, there is a Kid’s Zone with food, activities and games as well as a parade to enjoy, a farmer’s market – and a pancake breakfast to kick it all off first thing in the morning!
As a self proclaimed theatre nerd, I’d be remiss to not add this festival to the list of summer festivals to explore in San Diego! Like many fringe festivals across the country, the San Diego Fringe welcomes talent from all over the US to bring their shows to life on stage. Artists have the opportunity to showcase their creative talents and come together with other actors, directors, writers, producers and the like for an amazing week of theatre. And lucky us – we get to be the audience! Check out the San Diego Fringe for some awesome talent and a great taste of the independent theatre scene.
Taking place over Memorial Day weekend, the San Diego Jazz Festival is a must for those music lovers who are passionate about the standards and love listening to jazz grow and transform on stage. As a lover of jazz, this is a must.
On August 8th, Cardiff-by-the-Sea celebrates those furry friends that we all love so much! This one day event draws about 10,000 pups. With contests like the Cutest Puppy, Dog/Owner Lookalike and Best Looking Big and Small Dog, you and your four legged family members can take in the sights and enjoy local live music while sipping a cold drink in the beer garden.
If you’re looking for an enjoyable day by the ocean, and you’re also looking to give back to the beautiful beach communities of San Diego, this event is for you. On July 16th, the famous eatery Rubio’s will be ‘celebrating the ocean and it’s many gifts’. The day starts with a beach cleanup, that quickly turns into an awesome party with live music, free food, and activities for both kids and adults. If you want to feel good AND have fun, don’t miss this San Diego Summer Festival!
Comic Con International began back in 1970 as a ‘minicon’ at the US Grant Hotel in Downtown San Diego. This small, one day event eventually grew into the behemoth extravaganza it is today, with up to 130,000 attendees swarming the city to catch the latest news in the movie and comic world and meet their favorite science fiction and comic celebrities, actors, writers and creators. Though tickets can be hard to come by, if you aren’t lucky enough to snatch them up in time, just heading downtown and exploring around the convention centre will give you a great taste of the fun! The costumes alone are a sight to see! Get here July 21st to 24th to check out this awesome summer event in San Diego.
So come and enjoy the beautiful summer that San Diego offers, and all the of the summer festivals that help to make it that much more spectacular!