California, Uncategorized, Where We've Been

San Diego, CA

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hotel del Coronado

The Hotel del Coronado is an iconic architectural masterpiece that has drawn visitors for well over a century. Situated on Coronado Island, the hotel was a destination spot for affluent travelers when it opened in 1888. From the east coast, the journey would take 7 days by train to reach the California coast. Once they arrived, they would spend months at a time enjoying the comforts of the hotel.

Depending on season, a stay at the hotel today can range anywhere from $400 per night to over $2000 per night for prime ocean views.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park

The San Diego Zoo Safari Park is a sister park to the main San Diego Zoo. It offers a unique zoo experience with a tram ride that takes you on the outskirts of the park, in addition to typical zoo exhibits. It’s designed to make you feel like you’re on an African Safari rather than walking around a zoo.

They had a tethered hot air balloon ride in the center of the park, for an extra fee. (We didn’t ride it, but it looked like it would be fun.) There were additional safari adventures that could be purchased that would take you to different paddocks.

Overall, it was a fun day. I’m not sure the kids would include it as one of their favorites just because of how hot it was when we went, not because of the safari park itself. But the weather can put a damper on things.

Balboa Park

Balboa Park is also an iconic San Diego destination. The architecture of the buildings in the park make it an enjoyable day trip experience.

Within the park there are a few museums not to miss. The Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and the Natural History Museum are both a worthwhile visit. We really enjoyed the hands-on electricity exhibits in the Fleet museum. It seems so many museums are adding a lot of computer based exhibits and interactives, while the exhibits in the Fleet Museum are mostly still physical so you can actually see what’s happening when you interact with it instead of a computer leading you through an interactive lesson.

Balboa Park is also a place where musicians like to hang out and play for tips as you walk around enjoying the architecture. There’s a duck pond near the center of the park that’s a relaxing spot to rest your feet before continuing to explore.

Point Loma Lighthouse

The Point Loma Lighthouse is located on a peninsula across from Coronado Island. Before being shut down it was used as a signal beacon for ships entering the Coronado Bay harbor. Due to the continual foggy days that kept the lighthouse light from reaching the ships, the Point Loma Lighthouse was eventually closed down in favor of another lighthouse built closer to sea level.

We were able to tour the inside of the lighthouse, but couldn’t go into any of the rooms or the light at the top. They had a small museum on site that explained how lighthouses used to work and how the families who lived there spent their days, usually in loneliness.


Everything is awesome!

We did Legoland the last time we came to San Diego when the kids were younger. It is a great place to bring younger kids. They have fond memories of it and wanted to go again, but for my now 13 and 10 year old, they were a little underwhelmed by the rides and attractions.

There were a handful of rides that kept them entertained, but even the water park and Monster Party were just “ehh.” I’m glad we went when they were younger!


SeaWorld surprised me. I went when I was a kid in the ’80s and there weren’t any rides there then, at least to my knowledge. But now there are rides and pretty good ones at that! I was not expecting that.

The only bad thing I can say about SeaWorld was that it wasn’t open long enough for us to enjoy everything. It is a huge park and with the added rides, it was really hard to squeeze everything into one day. Oh and food prices…yikes! (BYOF-Bring Your Own Food)

We saw several shows featuring orcas, dolphins, sea otters, and sea lions. The kids enjoyed the otters and sea lions show the best. It had a kid sense of humor and storyline.

Miramar Air Show

Nearly every branch was featured at the Miramar Air Show this week. There were all kinds of acrobatics, vertical takeoffs, controlled falls, tandem flights, but the highlight of the show was the Navy Blue Angels.

The seats were packed watching them perform. Their performance was so meticulously calculated that one wrong move would have put them and their fellow pilots in danger. Only 18″ lay between perfection and disaster. What a treat to see them perform!

Del Mar Beach at Camp Pendleton

We stayed at Del Mar Beach at Camp Pendleton for two weeks while exploring the San Diego area. It is a military only campground with parking right on the beach. We were the third row back, but still plenty close to enjoy the sunsets and waves.

The campsites were a little close together making turns difficult for a big rig, but still possible.

Starlink was sluggish as well as Verizon and AT&T. Even though we had clear skies without any obstructions, we weren’t able to use the internet without a lot of buffering. The networks seemed like they were all overloaded.

The nights were peaceful listening to the powerful waves crashing onto the beach. If just for the location, would definitely stay again!