The San Diego Botanic Garden is awash in lights at night. Photo by Rachel Cobb

The San Diego Botanic Garden’s annual nighttime holiday festival, with more than 125,000 lights, live music and traditional holiday activities, begins Saturday.

The Garden of Lights takes place from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. every night through Dec. 23 and then again Dec. 26 to 30 at the 37-acre garden in Encinitas.

Visitors can stroll through the tropical rain forest, waterfall deck, eucalyptus grove and bamboo garden, listen to blues and jazz, and sample Red Oven‘s artisanal pizza and pasta. Family-friendly holiday activities include:

  • Horse-drawn wagon rides, hot-mulled wine and marshmallow roasting
  • Spin art and holiday crafts
  • Carolers and visits with Santa
  • Snow for sledding
  • Puppet Shows

Plant-related gift items will be on sale at the garden’s gift shops as well as winter plants.

Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for children aged 3-12. Children 2 and under are free.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.