A city like Long Beach, with a population close to half a million, is going to have plenty going on no matter what time of year you visit. The city is a popular destination for tourists and Southern California natives who are looking for a weekend getaway. Spontaneous travelers will find that there is almost always an event going on in this busy city outside of Los Angeles.
You could take your chances, but a better idea is to plan your vacation around a special event. With a little bit of organization, you will know what to expect and be able to take advantage of all the perks that come with being in town for one of this coastal cities fabulous events.
One of the best ways to search for local events and festivals is to use the Internet. You can find listings for things that are going on now and in the future, allowing you to better plan your vacation. If you’re looking to visit for a specific event or during a certain time of year, an online calendar is a great way to see what’s happening and when.
A great place to start is the Long Beach Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Their calendar will let you see at a glance everything that’s going on throughout the year in the city. Some of the most popular annual events are:
- January: New Year’s Eve celebration on the Queen Mary
- February: The Belmont Shore Chocolate Festival
- March: Indian Pow Wow at CSULB
- April: Toyota Grand Prix
- May: Lesbian and Gay Pride Festival
- June: Ink & Iron Tattoo Convention
- July: Tafesilafa’i Festival
- August: Long Beach Jazz Festival
- September: the Greek Festival
- October: Harvest Festival original art and craft show
- November: Veteran’s Day Parade
- December: Naples Boat Parade
Attending a local festival, fair or special event can give you a new perspective on local culture. In addition, it’s a great way to save money while still experiencing all the best that the city has to offer. Although every festival will have a ticket price, your daily “entertainment budget” will be less than if you paid for individual tours and attractions.
Another benefit of planning a vacation to coincide with a local festival is that you may be able to purchase a package deal from the hotel that includes discount tickets to your chosen event. When you book your stay, be sure to ask the hotel if they offer a special rate to guests that are attending the festival.
Music festivals and concerts, extreme sporting events and golf tournaments, art walks and crafting extravaganzas, conventions and seminars – Long Beach events aren’t hard to find as long as you know where to look. Whether you’re interested in a particular festival just want to experience something new, planning your vacation around a special event is a great way to make sure you have plenty to do.