La Jolla | Known as San Diego’s “Jewel by the Sea,” La Jolla (pronounced la ho-ya) is a seaside community that occupies 7 miles of beautiful coastline and offers family-friendly beaches, upscale dining, and multiple outdoor activities.
WHAT WE DID
We found a parking spot on Coast Boulevard along Wipe Out Beach and took a scenic walk to down the La Jolla Shores.
La Jolla Shores | A large stretch of flat sand, with mild surf great for swimming and spotting marine life.
La Jolla Children’s Pool | Originally this sea wall was built as a safe place for children to swim has now become a popular place to spot seals and sea lions.
The main area was blocked off so you cannot get access the actual beach where they lay but you can get a great view. Warning: they are cute but also a bit stinky!
Located on the other side of the lookout wall is a smaller beach you can get access to by a small flight of concrete stairs. We got lucky as there were about 10 sea lions and seals sunbathing right on the shore. Posted signs warn visitors not to get too close or take “seal selfies” as mothers may abandon their young if they feel threatened. There was a crowd of spectators but everyone kept a safe enough distance so they were not disturbed.
Shell Beach | A small beach that is accessed by walking down a flight of concrete steps near Ellen Browning Scripps Park.
We didn’t actually make it down to the beach since Jaxon insists on walking down each stair by himself (there were quite a few) but it was very beautiful.
Ellen Browning Scripps Memorial Park | One of the most photographed spots in San Diego this 5.6-acre open space park known as the centerpiece of La Jolla.
The Scripps Memorial Park is also home to this Monterey Cypress aka the Dr. Suess Tree. This rare tree could be seen from the observation tower Dr. Suess lived in and is said to be his inspiration for Truffula Trees in The Lorax.
There are also a couple cool lookout spots located down the coast walkway as well as restrooms and picnic areas.
I really wanted to visit the Scripps Pier but it would have taken over an hour to walk there and back to where our car was parked and the boys were getting hungry.
Maybe next time…
OTHER THINGS TO DO
Birch Aquarium | A public exploration center for the Scripps Institute of Oceanography featuring fish tanks, interactive tide pools, and science exhibits.
Ellen Browning Scripps Memorial Pier | Known for its iconic photo opportunities, it is one of the world’s longest private research piers used by the Scripps Institute of Oceanography.
La Jolla Cove | A small cove surrounded by sandstone cliffs where you can view sea lions and snorkel with leopard sharks.
La Jolla Kayak Tours | Explore sea caves, watch the sunset or snorkel with leopard sharks.
La Jolla Underwater Park | A 6,000-acre area of ocean bottom and tidelands featuring rocky reef, kelp bed, sand flats, and submarine canyon popular for snorkeling and scuba diving.
The Lot | La Jolla’s only movie theater including an upscale Mediterranean restaurant, bar, and cafe.
Map & Atlas Museum of La Jolla | A museum showcasing over 500 rare maps and atlases over the course of five centuries.
Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial | A historic landmark with over 3300 black granite plaques honoring living and deceased veterans who served our country.
Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego | An art museum focused on the collection, preservation, and exhibition of art from 1950 to today.
Sunny Jims Sea Cave & Store | A gift shop and entrance to the 145-step wooden staircase through an underground tunnel to the only sea cave visible from land.
Stuart Collection | A collection of public art on the campus of the University of California, SD.
Torry Pines Gliderpoint | Take part or hang out and watch others hang glide off the La Jolla cliffs.
Torry Pines State Park | Spreading over 2,000 acres of coastline this reserve offers hiking trails, guided nature walks, and the nation’s rarest pine trees.
TIPS FOR VISITING LA JOLLA
Do not feed or get too close to the seals and sea lions, they will bite if they feel threatened
Please report distressed sea lions, seals, and other marine life to the SeaWorld Rescue at 800-541-7325
Street parking is limited near the beaches so try to arrive before 9:00 am to grab a spot
Restrooms and shower facilities are available at La Jolla Shores Beach
La Jolla Shores, La Jolla Cove, and the Children’s Pool have lifeguard stations open from 9:00 am until dusk
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HAVE YOU VISITED LA JOLLA? IF SO, WHAT DID YOU ENJOY?