Completely OT - San Diego

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Completely OT - San Diego

    Hi All,
    Big family trip to San Diego this summer.  We're staying on/near Mission Beach, near Belmont Park.  Anyone know the area?  Is it a nice beach?  Any places we must see while there?  Is a rental car a must?

    I'm not sure how much we'll get out of the house with a 5 month old, but my entire family will be there so there may be an opportunity for a date or two.  We'll definitely hit the zoo, beach, and Belmont Park.

    I am usually such a planner and would know everything about San Diego by now, but there is just no time for messing around on the internet anymore!  Thanks for any info!!
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from Krystabel. Show Krystabel's posts

    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    Hey Fram 

    San Diego is really fun!  My DH & I went there for a short vacation about a year and a half ago.  

    I highly recommend the San Diego Zoo.... we especially LOVED seeing the Lions, the Zoo did a scheduled information/feeding talk and it was really cool to see them respond to the zoo keeper.  They publish a schedule of the talks and feedign times, I can't remember others that we went to at the time, but I thought it was a lot mor interesting than just walking around and seeing the animals laying around... it was more interactive.

    Also If you are looking for a nice place to walk around I'd go to Del Coronado  Hotel (it is the hotel that the Eagles Hotel California is written about) it was a nice place to see, the hotel is really cool looking and there is a nice beach out in front of it (we didn't swim there because it was too cold that day, but there were plenty of families with kids).  www.hotel>

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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    sorry, not sure why the end of my post is a link... the site for the hotel is: www.hotel>
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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    wierd not sure why the ">" appeared
    one more time:
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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    I lived in San Diego for 5 years post-college and it is a lovely town.  Mission Bay is OK, but the REALLY nice beaches are to the north - LaJolla, Del Mar, Solana Beach...  I second the trip to the Hotel Del out on Coronado Island (they also filmed the movie Some Like it Hot there) - very cool spot.  And while the Zoo is nice, the Wild Animal Park is worth the trip.  It's up north in Carlsbad which is also where Legoland is and if you have any pre-school/elementary aged kids with you that is a MUST.  The Gaslamp District downtown has cool restaurants and bars (Jim Croce is a local icon...) Also, be warned if you haven't spent much time on the West Coast.  The Pacific is COLD!  Makes the waters off the coast of MA feel like the Caribbean!! 
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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    DH and I visited my sister who lives in Mission Beach last year and had a lot of fun.  We really liked going to LaJolla.  We drove up to Torrey Pines and watched the hang gliders, hiked around the Torrey Pines trails, and did a sea kayaking tour of of LaJolla Beach.  She came across a Groupon for half off the kayaking, so it was only $25/person... but there are a ton of shops that do the kayaking and one of them is bound to be running a special.  They teach you how to get out past the waves and you see seals and other marine life.  Warning... you do get wet :o)  The restaurants she brought us to were great ... there was Pizza Port (small chain, couple of restaurants, VERY family friendly but you can still get good beer) and Pipes Cafe (in Encinitas) had an excellent breakfast/brunch.  If you are up for a bit of traveling we did a little hiking in Cuyamaca state park near Julian (which is also famous for their apple pie) and Cedar Creek Fall where you hiked down to a waterfall that had a little swimming hole.  One day we went to visit wine country in Temecula (about an hour to the north).  We actually did not go to the zoo, but did spend a whole day between the Midway and some of the other museums in Balboa Park.  There are several kid friendly museums.  We also caught a Padres Game which was pretty cheap and a lot of fun. 

    As for the car... we did take the bus from Pacific Beach to downtown (got off at the Midway) and managed the downtown area without a car.  However, to get to LaJolla or Torrey Pines it might be kind of a pain without one.  I found the website for the buses pretty easy to use, so take a look at their routes and see if you can get by with what they offer.  We were lucky that my sister was able to drive us most places and we only took the bus on the two days that she was at work while we were there. (though we did rent a car for a 3 day side-trip to LA to see friends)
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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    Hi Fram.  I would definitely recommend a car mostly so you have the freedom with the baby.  If one ofyou wants to stay out for awhile the other can go back with the baby.   SD is definitely a driving city.  I went to college there.  While I am not going to recommend going to Tijuana which we did a ton, I will second the other suggestions.

    Zoo or Wild Animal Park and Sea World are all great options.
    For a great beach, I definitely would go to Coronado as well.

    Please, please have some delicious Mexican food in Old Town! Yummy!

    I am jealous!
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from purplecow89. Show purplecow89's posts

    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    Take a look at the SD Zoo's website--they have a China themed Night Time Zoo event with music, acrobat entertainers, etc. and the zoo is open until 9 p.m.  It can get quite hot at the Wild Animal Park during the summer (it's north and inland ) but it's still worth it.  They just renamed it the Safari Park--it's got a big open space with mixed species and bus ride around.  I believe you can get discount tickets if you go to both.

    There are a lot of museums in Balboa Park plus some outdoor concerts--you can google them and find the schedule.  Natural History, Fleet Science Center, Air and Space, Sports, Model Railroad, Museum of Man (anthropology/history with a current special exhibit on mummies) and several art museums, plus a lovely public rose garden and cactus garden.  Some of the museums are free different Tuesdays of the month, and you can get discounted passes for getting into several museums over a couple of days.

    Also there is the Birch Aquarium (run by Scripps Oceanography) which is just north of the beach/downtown of La Jolla.  Plus the seals by the Children's Pool in La Jolla--a herd (?) of harbor seals has taken over part of the beach and you can walk out on the wall and see them up close.  A big legal fight over the use of the beach has been going on for years, but the seals don't seem to care.

    If you want to go to Coronado you can take a ferry from downtown SD, kind of a long walk to the Hotel Del but not unreasonable.

    Also, for the adults, San Diego is the home of Stone Brewery and I believe their shop in the South Park neighborhood has opened.  Can't beat that!

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    Re: Completely OT - San Diego

    Thanks for all the advice!
    We're leaving for San Diego on Saturday and I still haven't done any planning!  It's a family reunion though, so I'm hoping we can tag along with others who know what's up.

    Anywhere in particular we should go in La Jolla or the Gaslamp District?