If you are new to this city or just visiting here, San Diego can appear like the land of the giants. Besides Sea World and the Zoo, where can you take the kids to have fun without spending a week’s pay? San Diego has many child friendly areas. Here are five best bets.
- 1. Balboa Park. This municipal park is located right in the center of town. It stretches out 1,200 ft. with lush vegetation, exotic trees, gardens and historical buildings. The northeast part of the park has carousels, a miniature railroad and an artist’s village. There are play areas near Cedar St., Upas St., Morley Field, Pepper Grove and Sixth Ave. Also, there are hiking trails, museums, musicians, jugglers and other entertainers along the Prado. There are plenty of areas for picnics, soft ball and volleyball games. It could be an educational day for the kids or just a great place to have fun.
- 2. Petco Park. Several years ago, as part of the plan for the Petco Baseball Park, the City and the Padre organization earmarked a childrens’ park on the north side of the complex. It has turned out to be a great place to take the kids and hang out. There is the usually area with swings, climbing bars and the like. However, what makes this park special is the mini baseball field, complete with a diamond and pitcher’s mound. The kids can play a game of softball in plain sight. You can relax on the huge grassy mound nearby. The park is especially lively during the Padre’s fan appreciation day. Everyone gets to go in the main ballpark and meet major league players and see the displays.
- 3. Liberty Station. With a little reluctance, I suggest this beautiful area that used to be the Navy Training Center. Even though it has residential homes and businesses, it still has the campus feel to it. I’m reluctant to suggest this area because it hasn’t be widely discovered yet. It’s only a few blocks north of the airport, but it has a small community feel. On the south side of Liberty Station, there are two large grassy fields lying adjacent to each other. Also, there is a large playground area. It is next to everything, but it is set separate from the other active areas. There are barbeque pits near the playground.
- 4. Beaches. This seems like a no brainer when it comes to visiting San Diego, but there are some beaches that are more kid friendly than others. For instance, Mission Beach has Belmont Park. It has amusement park rides, including a roller coaster. There are plenty picnic areas nearby. La Jolla Cove has tide pools and large grassy areas where the kid can play. You can’t really go wrong with any of the beaches in San Diego, even in October.
- 5. Seaport Village: Along with having plenty of shops and restaurants for adults, Seaport Village is a great place to be a kid. There is a horsey merry go round, mimes, musicians, artists, yummy snacks like ice cream from Ben and Jerry’s and delicious fudge from the Seaport Fudge Factory. You can pack in a day of fun by planning a day at Seaport Village. After shopping and playing around in the main part of the Village, you and the kids can stretch out on the nearby peninsula. You can watch the ships go by as the kids and run free. In the nearby marina, Sea forth boats offers boat and jet ski rentals. There is usually something going on there, especially on the weekends.
San Diego is a town of diversity. The demographic picture is definitely changing. There are more couples with kids in the Greater San Diego area. More kid friend places are going to appear around town. Check out San Diego Real Time’s ” Things to Do in San Diego.” Section for news in this area. If you have a suggestion, please comment here.