Summertime in Arizona means: a) stay out of the 115F heat. b) head to the California beaches. San Diego is an easy five-hour drive away from Phoenix, and with so many family-friendly things to do, it is the perfect summer getaway!
|Looks like this little dude is not afraid of heights|
FIVE FAMILY-FRIENDLY ATTRACTIONS (NOT SEA WORLD):
1. SEAPORT VILLAGE
This inviting outdoors shopping and dining area was just across the street from our hotel, by the bay. With baby nice and cozy in his Ergobaby (affiliate link). I must have walked around for 2 or 3 hours enjoying the ocean view and fresh air. I walked north passing the Pier Cafe (where we had dinner later that night), the Fish Market, and headed toward the USS Midway Museum.
|Pier Cafe @ Seaport Village|
SIDE NOTE ON GASLAMP DISTRICT – If you’re traveling with little ones and are looking for something to do at night, Seaport Village seemed like the best choice. The Gaslamp Quarter at night is NOT child-friendly. Single and ready to drunkenly mingle? Oh the possibilities.
|Unconditional Surrender sculpture|
After a 10-minute walk we arrived at the museum and although I did not hop aboard, I snapped some photos of it along with the infamous “kissing” statue. Tickets purchased online are a little cheaper, and there are discounts for students, retired military and seniors . Kids under 5 and active-duty military receive complimentary tickets.
3. PETCO PARK
There are tons of family events at the park, aside from baseball games, of course! Check the Padres Kids webpage for more information and a full calendar of events.
4. LA JOLLA
|La Jolla By the Sea|
The Children’s Pool in La Jolla was a highly recommended and easy 20-minute drive north from downtown. It’s THE place to spot sea lions, seals and even whales! I was forewarned of a very fishy stench, which is in fact very discerning, yet it did not bother me. (I grew up in a fishing beach town in Brazil!) There is some controversy involving the human/animal relationship in the area, so to give the animals their space and specially since I had a baby in the carrier, I kept my distance. However, people were all up in their business and I’m not sure I’d be ok with that if I were them.
|Sea lions, seals and birds galore!|
We arrived in La Jolla late afternoon, saw tons of sea life and caught an incredible California sunset before heading back downtown.
|In love with California sunsets|
We headed to the beach on our last day in San Diego. There’s a ferry that leaves from downtown but we were on our way back to Arizona, so we drove across the bridge. We bypassed the famous Hotel Del Coronado and went straight to the shore before heading home. The beach was vast and fairly empty for a Sunday! Toes in the water = happiness.
San Diego might be one of the funnest places I’ve been to in a while, and I can’t wait to go back!