The 6 Best Spring Events in Southern California (Updated for 2020)

You know spring is upon us when we finally have warm enough weather for a beach day! Whether you’re going to see the superbloom of flowers, head to a car show, or just trying to get outside; you’ll love this list of Springtime events in Southern California!

PC: Emerald Events

Swallows’ Day Parade & Festival

2020 Date: March 21

Location: San Juan Capistrano, South Orange County.

Cost: Free!

Activities: A parade with local groups, food trucks, kids’ rides, Mercado Street Fair, a beer garden, and more.

The largest non-motorized parade in the country, Swallows’ Day celebrates the return of the swallows to the San Juan Capistrano Mission. Usually held in late March, this event is free and open to the public. Shuttle buses make this easy for families, also consider taking the Metrolink or Amtrak train since it stops in the heart of downtown San Juan Capistrano. Learn more about the Parade here.

PC: Early Snow Drop

Green Scene Plant & Garden Show

2020 Date: April 4 & 5

Location: Fullerton in North Orange County.

Cost: $8 or free for Arboretum Members, kids under 12, or Cal State Fullerton Titan cardholders.

Activities: Plant and garden accessories for sale from 80+ vendors, kids’ activities like 3-d flower art, live music, Make & Take classes, garden tours, and more.

Held in early April, Green Scene is Orange County’s largest plant and garden show. The Fullerton Arboretum is a botanical garden that offers a ton of things to do year-round. Stroll through the Arboretum and pick up a plant or two to support this non-profit garden. You can also learn more about sustainability in landscaping for those considering a drought-friendly garden. Learn more about Green Scene here.

PC: Art Fest

San Diego Botanic Garden ArtFest

2020 Date: April 18 & 19

Location: San Diego Botanic Garden in Encinitas (North County San Diego).

Cost: Free with Garden admission.

Activities: Plein air quick draw contest and 30+ art exhibits.

This art event takes place at the San Diego Botanic Garden which is 37 acres of nature’s beauty. ArtFest shows off the work of painters, glass artists, sculptors, potters, and fiber artists so there’s something for everyone. Be sure to check out the rotating exhibits in their museum and tour all the garden collections while you’re there! Find out more about this event here.

San Diego EarthFair

2020 Date: April 19

Location: Balboa Park, near the San Diego Airport & Zoo.

Cost: Free!

Activities: Children’s’ activities like face painting and magic shows, the Earth Parade, eARTh gallery arts and crafts show, Cleaner Car Concourse, a food pavilion, and a Food Pavilion.

The largest free annual environmental fair in the world, EarthFair brings in about 60,000 visitors a year. Check out over 300 exhibitors and special theme areas dedicated to being better to our Earth. This includes the event itself, which aims to have ZERO waste. Learn more about the event here.

Butterfly Pavilion at the Natural History Museum of LA

2020 Date: March-September (exact dates TBD)

Location: Near Downtown LA & USC.

Cost: $18 for adults, $10 for kids, and $15 for seniors.

Activities: The main activity is to see the butterflies but you can check out the current museum exhibits here.

Butterflies are taking flight at the Natural History Museum! This seasonal exhibit will let you get up close and personal with hundreds of butterflies. This includes 30 different species, 20 who are California natives. Note that the entry fee includes a timed ticket, you can learn more about this exhibit here.

Cherry Blossom Festivals

2020 Dates: Varies, check the link below.

Location: Check out our full list of cherry blossom festivals in SoCal!

Cost: Varies but usually Free-$20 for admission.

Activities: Seeing the cherry blossoms! Live music, crafts, food trucks, kids’ activities, and more.

There are several cherry blossom festivals throughout Southern California that you can check out! This is the perfect way to celebrate spring and will be fun for the whole family.

Get Outside!

Now that you know about all the best springtime events in Southern California, get outside! Plan a day with your family and don’t forget the sunscreen. If you have a favorite event not listed here, tell us in the comments below!

You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Top 5 Most Romantic Day Trips in San Diego | One Chance Travel
    April 2, 2019 at 7:45 pm

    […] cycling, swimming holes, dance classes, Frisbee golf, archery, and dance classes. They also host tons of events throughout the […]

  • Reply
    January 22, 2020 at 2:58 pm

    […] San Diego in the spring? Check out the best local events including the Swallows’ Day Parade, ArtFest, and […]

  • What Do you Think?