We squeezed in as much as we could, our one day in San Diego. Son #1 had not visited San Diego since he was a teenager and we visited my brother, his uncle. And that guy died more than 30 years ago. It was time for a visit.We drove around UCSD where Son #2 went to school, parked in a residential area and hiked a short trail near UCSD where we could (barely) see surfers at Black’s Beach, a popular surf spot for students.
All along the coast, surfers are warned to not surprise the denizens of the ocean floor. La Jolla is a rich, and beautiful, community. The beaches are some of the best. Between UCSD and La Jolla Cove lies La Jolla Shores Park, an easier place to sit on the sand and watch surfers.
The Children’s Pool at La Jolla’s Casa Beach is protected by a sea wall built in the 1930s. Seals have taken over the area designed to be a safe place for children to swim. The beach is closed from December 15 to May 15 because it has become a favorite breeding ground for the seals.
We walked along the waterfront from the Children’s Pool to La Jolla Cove. Once you get past the stink of the sea lions, it is a delightful area popular as a tourist attraction.
As is true with most tourist areas, you see people do stupid stuff.
We drove over the bridge to Coronado Island for a late lunch. Because we had eaten a very filling breakfast at Pipes Cafe in North County, we limited ourselves to a gelato cone. (There’s always room for ice cream.)
The historic hotel is still a visual treat.As in many other public spaces, we noticed that the lawn has been replaced with green grass Astro-turf, perhaps due to water restrictions. Not as appealing as real grass to me, but it does make for a clean environment. We sat on a bench at the edge of the lawn, licking our cones and watching couples stroll by.
Toward the end of the day, we squeezed in a quick trip to Balboa Park. What a wonderful resource for visitors and residents alike. So much to see and do––one could easily spend a week there. We spent only a couple of hours. What amazed us was the number of people enjoying the park at dusk.
The open-sided bar next to the Sculpture Garden was hopping, and all the walkways were filled with families and singles out for a Friday evening stroll. The park hosts sixteen museums. Some of them rotate free Tuesdays, and the Timken Museum of Art is always free.
After all that, Son #1 said he was hungry for poke or ramen, so Son #2, the fastest with his thumbs, used Yelp to find a great restaurant near the park: Hachi Ramen. We sat outside on the little patio and watched the Bankers Hill traffic flow. Reviews are a bit mixed on the food, but we all liked it, and it hit the spot after a busy day of sightseeing.
Date of travel: January 2019.