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Christmastime in Little Italy

17 December, 2017

There’s a 25-foot tree made up of 1,100 beautiful red poinsettias in the center of Piazza Basilone, which can only mean one thing — it’s Christmastime in Little Italy.

Welcome to the most magical season of the year. It’s a time when memories are made, family traditions are enjoyed and wonder and laughter fill our communities and homes. There are many so many special ways we celebrate Christmas but spending time with family and friends may just be our favorite. While the holiday meal isn’t as big of a star at Christmas as it is at Thanksgiving, Christmas dinner is still an important tradition for many of us. You will find Italian-American families gathering around the dinner table on Christmas Eve for The Feast of the Seven Fishes, a traditional dinner made up of seven different seafood dishes. Some of these dishes may include Baccala (salt cod), linguine with anchovy or clam, marinated eel, stuffed calamari in tomato sauce and scungilli salad (sea snail). Dinner is often followed by Midnight Mass service. After Mass, a nice slice of Panettone, a fruitcake filled with candied fruit, and a cup of hot chocolate might be enjoyed.

Christmas is a festival of sights, sounds and tastes. As you stroll through the streets of Little Italy in December you are treated to an experience like no other. Italian delicacies can be savored just through the doors of many of our local restaurants. Unique and handmade gifts can be found on the shelves of our shops and boutiques. Fun winter activities can be enjoyed during many of our community events, like the tree lighting and Christmas Village which occur every year. Oh, and don’t forget to have your picture taken with Santa. We may never enjoy a white Christmas in Little Italy but I can promise you your holiday will be full of magic, wonder and memories.

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions?

Do you open presents on Christmas Eve or wait until Christmas morning?

Do you serve a Christmas ham or maybe a turkey or lamb?

Is your Christmas tree real or artificial?

However you celebrate the season Little Italy wishes you a wonderful and special Christmas and holiday season! Buon Natale!

Our guide was simply amazing!!! He was well animated, very accommodating, and extremely personable. He was quite a character, in a fun and exciting way. I have nothing but positive things to say about my tour experience. I highly recommend choosing Little Italy Tours to be your tour guide! — VM, Bonita, CA
This is a MUST See and Do attraction in SD. Even members of our group who were born here, were blown away by the City and Neighborhood's History and stories. It was like we were transported back in time. The company and our guide did an Amazing Job!!! Our Group of 20+ can't stop raving about it! —Lisa B. Chula Vista, CA
What a ball! My colleagues and I took the Little Italy tour for our office party and a bit of team-building. We had so much fun. Our guide was amazing. We learned so much about pizza and Italian cuisine and Little Italy's influence in San Diego. We ate, we learned, we drank, and we had a ball! I would highly recommend taking a tour with Little Italy. Grazie mille!!! — Robin D. San Diego, CA
What an amazing and engaging tour guide we had! The best of the best! I feel in love with Italy all over again. The pizza, pasta and gelato was as tasty as could be. Their cooking class is next on my list. Ciao! —Marlo V. Las Vegas, NV
My work department did this tour as part of our holiday celebrations and had a great time! Our tour guide was very informative and energetic. We learned all about where pizza came from and each stop taught us something new and allowed us to try pizza from a different region. You will leave full and educated! —Sheila S. Boston, MA
Best hour and a half out of a 9 day trip. Thanks to our guide for an entertaining and informative tour of Little Italy! —Duane L. Duluth, MN
We had a WONDERFUL tour this morning with our guide!! We all, ages from 14 to 53, had such a special and fun time learning about the history of Little Italy... We will DEFINITELY schedule something else with this group. It was truly the highlight of our vacation! —Suzy H. Irvine, CA
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