Start your day like a local with a creamy latte from Amavida Coffee and Tea (amavida.com) near the Central Square, where you can also find biscuit sandwiches, baked pastries, and espresso drinks from freshly ground single-origin beans. In the afternoons, Amavida serves beer, wine, and Latin American-inspired snacks.
Take a few quiet moments on the beach to soak up the sounds of your holiday: the rushing tide and rustling sea grass. Afterward, it's hard to imagine anything more enjoyable on a brisk winter morning than exploring streets framed with picket fences and wandering the countless footpaths that wind through town. Stop and admire candy-colored homes with whimsical names like Key Lime, Surf Lodge, and Shore Is Fun. Along the way, you'll pass lots of vine-covered arbors, sculpture installations, and gorgeous wraparound porches decked out with garlands and wreaths. Nearby, a tranquil path leads to a hidden gazebo. Overhead, you'll see a canopy of limbs speckled with pinecones still clinging to the bare branches.
Nine of those charming streets lead to Seaside's renowned beach pavilions, which stretch over the dunes to offer breathtaking views. Each one is designed by a different architect and provides a distinct perspective on the coast.
Don't miss 15-year-old Seaside Interfaith Chapel (seasidefl.com), designed by architect Scott Merrill. It's one of many celebrated landmarks in the community and an inspired space for a holiday service or concert—or just a little quiet time to reflect on the season.
Rimmed with palm trees that glitter with twinkling lights, Seaside Amphitheater is the heart of downtown and a prime location for the best dining and shopping. The annual Turn On the Town celebration on November 26 includes a Christmas parade, the arrival of Santa Claus, and the lighting of a Christmas tree at the amphitheater.