Our family tradition is to take a Christmas Day hike. If that’s not your scene, there’s a range of activities open over the holiday weekend.
What’s Open on Christmas Eve
- Oakland Ice Center has three open skate sessions. Check out Whitney’s review of this venue >
- Six Flags Holiday in the Park is open in Vallejo from 12 pm to 7 pm. Entertain the older cousins here!
- Chabot Space and Science Center is open from 10 am to 2 pm.
- Travel back in time at Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont; open from 10 am to 4pm.
- High Scores Arcade is open in Alameda from 12:30 pm to 10 pm.
- Go to Plank in Oakland is open 11:30 am to 6 pm for food, bowling, and arcade fun.
- Try to bowl a strike at Bowlero in Alameda is open from 12 pm to 7 pm.
- Crab Cove Nature Center is open from 10 am to 4 pm.
- Play in the nature playspace at OMCA is open from 11 am to 5 pm.
- Tour the grounds at Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek s open from 9 am to 2 pm.
- Lindsay Wildlife Experience in Walnut Creek is open from 10 am to 2 pm.
- Jump all around at open jump session at Rockin’ Jump. Concord location is open 11 am to 5 pm, and the Fremont location is open from 10 am to 8 pm.
- Reserve tickets to the Oakland Zoo, which is open from 10 am to 3 pm.
- Ride a ferry into San Francisco. It’s my favorite public transportation in the area and a thrill for both kids and adults.
- Watch the model trains at Golden Gate Model Railroad Museum from noon to 4pm.
- San Francisco Botanical Garden is open until 4 pm. Enter between 7:30 am and 9 am for free entry.
- View fish and otters at Aquarium of the Bay from 11 am to 3 pm.
- Cal Academy in San Francisco is open from 9:30 am to 5 pm.
- Visit the de Young Museum from 9:30 am to 5 pm. Plus, admission is free to Bay Area residents every Saturday.
- Road trip to Monterey Bay Aquarium; it’s open from 10 am to 5 pm.
- Check out the tides and see the tide pools near Moss Beach.
- Go to the movies; many theaters are open over major holidays.
- There’s always church!
What’s Open on Christmas Day
- Bowlero in Alameda is open from 2 pm to 11 pm—try to get a strike!
- The Hayward location of Round1 Bowling & Entertainment, with kid-friendly karaoke and arcade games, is open from noon to 10 pm.
- The New Parkway Theatre has a showing in the evening, plus a viewing of the Warriors game.
- Many ice skating rinks offer public skating sessions on Christmas Day. Reserve a space in advance.
- Cal Academy in San Francisco is open from 11 am to 5 pm.
- San Francisco Botanical Garden hosts a Free Admission Day from 7:30 am to 4 pm. Run through the lush lawns, hide in the trees, or visit the spectacular Children’s Garden. Don’t forget to visit the nearby Entwined light show at night.
- The San Francisco Zoo is open 365 days each year including Christmas from 10 am to 4 pm. [More fun stuff to see and do for Christmas in San Francisco >]
Outside Stuff that Doesn’t Close That’s Fun at Christmastime
- Little Farm is open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day because the animals still gotta eat!
- A big list of outdoor destinations for families, most of which are accessible on holidays and totally toddler-friendly.
- Plan your day around being at a great holiday light show when it gets dark. We like Christmas Tree Lane in Alameda.
- Head toward the water. Try Oakland’s Shoreline Park where you can see the big container ships. Or fly kites in the Berkeley Marina if it’s not raining.
- Head to the Oakland hills. Search for salamanders in the Redwoods or walk the labyrinth at Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve.
- Bring your wheels to a flat elementary school playground or the Ohlone Parkway in North Berkeley (more places to learn to ride a bike >).
- Explore some of the East Bay’s secret paths and staircases.
🔔🎅🎁🎄Holiday Fun Quick Link🔔🎁s🌟Where to Get Santa Photos
🌟Holiday High Teas
🌟Bay Area Nutcrackers
🌟Best Christmas Lights
... and our Ultimate Guide to Holiday Fun For East Bay Families ---