The Christmas Boat Parade will attract nearly one million viewers. Beautiful multi-million dollar yachts, kayaks, canoes and other small boats will light up the harbor as a dazzling array of holiday lights and music fill the air at the Christmas Boat Parade. Many of the boats will be richly decorated with animated Christmas scenes accompanied by music and costumed carolers. Some boat owners in the past have spent over $50,000 to decorate their vessels for the event. The Christmas floats will wind their way some 14.7 miles around the harbor to give viewers in restaurants, yacht clubs, on public beaches, and in private homes an incredible sight that has delighted millions of people for a century.
Newport Beach was named in 2011 as the "#2 Destination in the Country for Holiday Lights" by Yahoo Travel and specifically, the Christmas Boat Parade has been hailed as "one of the top ten holiday happenings in the nation" by the New York Times. It is truly a magical holiday tradition for all ages and continues to be a premier event during the holiday season in Southern California that brings joy and happiness to all that view it.
Ring of Lights
Serving as the backdrop for the hundreds of lighted boats in the parade is the annual "Ring of Lights" contest. Beautifully decorated bayside homes and businesses surrounding the harbor go "all out" with their own holiday spirit, featuring everything from roof-top animated scenes to dancing Christmas trees. With its own judged categories and prizes awarded, the "Ring of Lights" has become as celebrated as the boat parade itself.