1. Balboa Park: Explore the beautiful gardens, playgrounds, and walking trails throughout this 1,200-acre urban park. Many areas within the park are free to visit, including the Botanical Building, the outdoor Spreckels Organ Pavilion concerts, and the park’s various gardens. https://www.balboapark.org/
  2. La Jolla Cove: Spend a day at this picturesque beach, where you can watch sea lions, seals, and birds in their natural habitat. The nearby Ellen Browning Scripps Park offers a grassy area for picnics and play. https://www.sandiego.gov/lifeguards/beaches/cove
  3. Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve: Hike through this 2,000-acre coastal reserve and enjoy stunning ocean views. The reserve features miles of trails, native plants, and wildlife viewing opportunities. https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=658
  4. Old Town San Diego State Historic Park: Learn about San Diego’s history as you stroll through the park, which includes restored adobe buildings, museums, and living history demonstrations. https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=663
  5. Mission Bay Park: With over 4,200 acres of land and water, this park offers playgrounds, picnic areas, and miles of bike paths. You can also fly a kite, go for a walk, or just enjoy the scenery. https://www.sandiego.gov/park-and-recreation/parks/regional/missionbay
  6. Coronado Beach: Take the kids to this beautiful beach, known for its soft, golden sand and picturesque views of the Hotel del Coronado. The beach is perfect for building sandcastles, playing in the waves, or watching the sunset. https://www.coronado.ca.us/cms/one.aspx?pageId=1563893
  7. Pacific Beach and Ocean Beach: Visit these popular beaches, where you can enjoy sunbathing, swimming, and people-watching. Don’t miss the Ocean Beach Pier for a nice walk and beautiful views. https://www.sandiego.gov/lifeguards/beaches/pb
  8. Waterfront Park: This downtown park offers interactive water fountains, play areas, and green spaces for picnics and play. https://www.sdparks.org/content/sdparks/en/park-pages/Waterfront.html
  1. Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve: This coastal wetland, located near the border of the United States and Mexico, offers a unique opportunity to explore the diverse ecosystem where fresh water from the Tijuana River meets the saltwater of the Pacific Ocean. The reserve features several miles of walking trails, bird watching opportunities, and educational exhibits at the Visitor Center. It’s a great place for kids to learn about local wildlife, plant species, and the importance of wetland conservation. https://trnerr.org/
  2. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park: About a two-hour drive from San Diego, this park offers incredible desert landscapes, hiking trails, and opportunities for wildlife spotting, including the famous bighorn sheep. The park’s visitor center is also free to visit. https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=638

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