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How to Spend Christmas in San Francisco

Posted by tomistech on December 13, 2022

San Francisco is a great place to spend Christmas. There are many family activities and events that you can take part in. You can also visit some of the attractions that the city has to offer during the holidays.

The city gets pretty much empty since some people come back to their homes to spend the holidays with their families. So, you can expect the places to be less crowded.

Moreover, some restaurants will offer the traditional Christmas Eve meal if you don’t feel like cooking and have a different experience with your loved ones. 

We made a list of things that you can do on these special days:

Top 9 Christmas Eve Activities

  1. SF Ballet's Nutcracker
  2. A Christmas Carol
  3. Harry Connick Jr and His Band
  4. Holiday Spectacular: Home for the Holidays
  5. Frozen
  6. The Christmas Ballet
  7. Beetlejuice - The Musical
  8. Sleeping Beauty - Panto in the Presidio
  9. Exhibition - I Left My Art in San Francisco

Plus SF attractions and restaurants that are open on Christmas Eve!

SF Ballet's Nutcracker

The San Francisco Ballet performs this one of their most popular and memorable performances and it is a must-do in San Francisco. Ideal for the whole family.

When: December 24 at 11 am or 4 pm
Where: War Memorial Opera House – 301 Van Ness Avenue
Tickets: $98 to $282

A Christmas Carol

They will perform the classic story of Ebenezer Scrooge and his bad behavior toward Christmas. He has his life changed after his dream with his parents. The outcome of it is worth seeing and it becomes a magical Christmas story.

When: December 24 at 1 pm
Where: Toni Rembe Theater
Tickets: $19 to $140

Harry Connick Jr and His Band

Harry is a Grammy-winning performer, and he will perform Christmas classic songs that everyone will sing along.

When: December 24 at 2 pm
Where: Davies Symphony Hall – 201 Van Ness Avenue
Tickets: $268 to $804+

Holiday Spectacular: Home for the Holidays

SFGMC will perform the holiday favorites songs and you can expect some surprises. The show will be a great experience and you will have a lot of fun.

When: December 24 – 5, 7, and 9 pm
Where: The Castro Theatre – 429 Castro Street
Tickets: $40 to $50

Frozen

The Broadway Musical will be an unforgettable experience for you and your children. It is filled with sensational special effects, gorgeous sets and costumes, and incredible performances.

When: December 24 from 1 to 3:30 pm
Where: Orpheum Theatre – 1192 Market Street
Tickets: $141 to $202

The Christmas Ballet

Smuin’s The Christmas Ballet celebrates the holidays with two acts. One is the beautiful classical ballet se to beloved carols, and red-hot contemporary number set to pop favorites. 

When: December 24 from 2 to 4 pm
Where: Blue Shield of California Theater at YBCA – 700 Howard Street
Tickets: $25 to $90

Beetlejuice – The Musical

The classic movie from Tim Burton is represented in this magical musical and you will be transported to his imaginative world.

When: December 24 at 1 pm
Where: Golden Gate Theatre – 1 Taylor Street
Tickets: $104 to $688

Sleeping Beauty - Panto in the Presidio

This Disney classic is worthy seen with your whole family. Meet again Aurora, her furry friends and her loyal fairies in an amazing adventure in a forest. 

When: December 24 at 1 pm
Where: Presidio Theatre – 99 Moraga Avenue
Tickets: $5 to $20

Exhibition - I Left My Art in San Francisco 

The Cartoon Art Museum presents artwork from our favorite San Francisco landmarks.

When: December 24 from 11 am to 5 pm
Where: Cartoon Art Museum – 781 Beach Street
Tickets: Adults $10 / San Francisco Resident $7 / Students, Seniors, Military, Educator $6 / Children (5 and younger) free


 

San Francisco Attractions Open on Christmas Eve


Christmas Eve Dinner

  • Bistro Central Parc: Italian
  • Bobo's: Steakhouse
  • Catch: Seafood
  • Cocotte: French
  • Fogo de Chao: Brazilian Steakhouse
  • Jackson Fillmore Trattoria: Italian
  • North Beach Restaurant: Italian
  • Michael Mina: New American
  • McCormick & Kuleto's Seafood Restaurant:  Seafood
  • Maybeck’s: New American
  • Mathilde French Bistro: French
  • The Matterhorn Restaurant and Bakery: Swiss
  • La Societe Bar & Cafe: French
  • L'Ardoise: French
  • O' by Claude Le Tohic: French
  • Octavia: New American
  • Osso Steakhouse: Steakhouse
  • Penny Roma: Cal-Italian
  • Ristorante Milano: Italian
  • Sato Omakase: Japanese
  • Serafina SF: Italian
  • Spruce: New American
  • John's Grill: American

Top Christmas Day Activities

  • Beetlejuice - The Musical
  • Frozen
  • Exhibition - Emerging Artist Showcase, Melissa Pagluica
  • Smash It! at the Museum of 3D Illusions
  • "Lindy in the Park" Swing Dance Party
  • Haight Ashbury SF: Outdoor Escape Game - Hippie Culture 
  • San Francisco Zombie Scavenger Hunt
  • Mysteries on the Move: Scavenger Hunt in San Francisco

Plus SF attractions and restaurants that are open on Christmas!

Beetlejuice – The Musical

The classic movie from Tim Burton is represented in this magical musical and you will be transported to his imaginative world. 

When: December 25 at 1 pm
Where: Golden Gate Theatre – 1 Taylor Street
Tickets: $104 to $688

Frozen

The Broadway Musical will be an unforgettable experience for you and your children. It is filled with sensational special effects, gorgeous sets and costumes, and incredible performances.

When: December 25 from 1 to 3:30 pm
Where: Orpheum Theatre – 1192 Market Street
Tickets: $141 to $202

Exhibition – Emerging Artist Showcase, Melissa Pagluica 

This exhibit presents a selection of Pagluica’s favorite pages from her debut graphic novel Above the Clouds.

When: December 25 from 11 am to 5 pm
Where: Cartoon Art Museum – 781 Beach Street
Tickets: Adults $10 / San Francisco Resident $7 / Students, Seniors, Military, Educator $6 / Children (5 and younger) free

Smash It! at the Museum of 3D Illusions

Feeling stressed? This unique and fun activity allows you to throw plates against a wall.

When: December 25 12 pm
Where: 55-61 Jefferson Street
Tickets: Adult 12+ $20 (includes three plates)

“Lindy in the Park” Swing Dance Party

Golden Gate Park will close its streets to the dancers have fun.

When: December 25 from 11 pm to 2 pm
Where: JFK Dr between 8th and 10th, behind the De Young Museum
Tickets: Free

Haight Ashbury SF: Outdoor Escape Game - Hippie Culture 

What to play a real-world adventure? The game is an interactive activity that will guide you by the Questo app throughout San Francisco. You will have to follow the directions and solve puzzles, riddles, and cryptic codes. You will also visit the landmarks and hidden places in SF, while learning interesting facts about the city. Download for free the app Questo and to the start point.

When: December 25. Options: 11 am, 2 pm, 4 pm and 6 pm.
Where: 1485 Haight Street
Tickets: $8.39

San Francisco Zombie Scavenger Hunt

The game is a zombie-themed scavenger hunt that will test your capacity to survive after a zombie apocalypse. It will guide you through San Francisco, and you will have to get supplies to survive. 

When: December 25 from 9 am to 5 pm.
Where: Embarcadero Plaza – 1 Steuart Street
Tickets: $8.39

Mysteries on the Move: Scavenger Hunt in San Francisco

Opportunity to discover San Francisco in a different way. The game is to discover a murder mystery scavenger hunt throughout SF.

When: December 25 from 7 am to 10 pm.
Where: 1 Telegraph Hill Boulevard
Tickets: $15


San Francisco Attractions Open on Christmas Day


Christmas Day Dinner

  • Benihana: Japanese
  • Bistro Baudin: American
  • Bistro Central Parc: Italian
  • Bobo's: Steakhouse
  • Cesario’s: Italian
  • Cocotte: French
  • Fang: Chinese
  • Franciscan Crab Restaurant: Seafood
  • Fogo de Chao:  Brazilian Steakhouse
  • Gyu-Kaku: Japanese
  • Harborview: Chinese
  • John's Grill: American
  • Laurel Court in the Fairmont: American
  • Mastro’s Steakhouse: Steakhouse
  • McCormick & Kuleto's: Seafood
  • Miller & Lux: Steakhouse
  • Morton’s: Steakhouse
  • Napizza: Italian
  • STK: Steakhouse
  • Taksim: Mediterranean
  • The Waterfront Restaurant and Café: Californian
  • Ula Restaurant Bar and Lounge: French
  • Villon: American
  • Zingari Ristorante: Italian

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