Parents with kids who are into discovery and exploration should definitely take their children to a town that offers a variety of chances for them to engage in it. San Diego is not short of such options, with some allowing visitors to see and learn about different species and others offering the chance to learn more about science and technology. Some parks and museums offer both, in additional to the chance to go on rides and engage in other forms of entertainment. If you’re looking for a chance to have fun with your family while allowing your children to explore their inner scientist and explorer, stop by San Diego to see their eight best options.
1. Belmont Park
One of the best ways to spend a family day is to take your kids on the wildest of rides and Belmont Park will provide you with plenty of options if you have no plans for the weekend. Rides range from roller coasters for those kids who aren’t afraid of a challenge to carousels for younger kids who just aren’t ready yet for thrill-seeking experiences. Other activities include zip lining through the air at the park’s high-flying center or testing your aim in a game of laser tag. When you’re all done with your activities, you can grab a bite while getting great views of the ocean, as well as stop by the shops to take something home to remember the trip.
Address: 3146 Mission Blvd, 92109 San Diego, CA
Website: Belmont Park
2. San Diego Zoo
Discovering new animals is one of the most exciting parts of being a kid, so parents should make taking their kids to San Diego Zoo a priority if they or their kids are animal lovers. This zoo provides over 3,000 different animals for visitors to see and learn about, including lions, gorillas, rhinos, elephants and pandas. Tours are available in different spots of the zoo so that visitors can be educated on different species, their habitats and ways to keep them from going extinct. The new “Animal in Action” exhibit allows visitors to see people handle certain animals, providing a more personal experience.
San Diego Zoo
Address: 2920 Zoo Dr, 92101 San Diego, CA
Website: San Diego Zoo
3. USS Midway Museum
One of the most common dreams that we have as kids is to take to the skies in some shape or form, and one of the ways to keep that dream alive for your children is to take them to the USS Midway Museum. Visitors will be able to learn about the variety of aircraft used by the United States Airforce throughout the years and enjoy great views of the ocean along the way. The museum allows visitors to get a look at 29 different aircraft that have been restored over time, and self-guided audio tours are available for exploring over 60 exhibits.
USS Midway Museum
Address: 910 N Harbor Dr, 92101 San Diego, CA
Website: USS Midway Museum
4. Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
Taking your kids out for a walk while enjoying nature is a good way to help them stay active and improve their interest in the outdoors at the same time. Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve is perfect for such the occasion. A variety of trails is available that let you get a good workout in as well as take photos of the trees and hills. The trails also take you guys out so that you can get a great view of the ocean and the city at the same time. The Nature Center lets you learn about the animals that occupy the area.
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
Address: 12600 N Torrey Pines Rd, 92037 La Jolla, CA
Website: Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
Fans of marine life who are looking for a place that is as fun as it is educational should see what SeaWorld San Diego has to offer. In addition to seeing sea lions, whales, dolphins and other animals perform at different events, parents can take their kids on roller coasters and other rides to get an extra thrill. A variety of tours and interactions are provided to let your kids actually pet dolphins and other mammals so that they can have a more personal experience. Visitors will also get to learn about how the park is working to save different species from extinction and make sure that they are taken care of.
SeaWorld San Diego
Address: Mission Bay Park, 500 Sea World Dr, 92109 San Diego, CA
6. San Diego Automotive Museum
Parents who are car enthusiasts and want their kids to learn more about the auto industry should take their kids to the San Diego Automotive Museum on their next free weekend. Visitors will get to look at collections of cars dating back to the 1930s, as well as motorcycles made from Harley-Davidson, the Indian Motorcycle Company and other organizations. Parents and kids will also be able to learn about legends like Evel Knievel and Steve McQueen, their accomplishments and what got them into performing the wildest of stunts. Events will also show off motorcycles and cars that were used in popular TV shows and movies.
San Diego Automotive Museum
Address: 2080 Pan American Plaza, 92101 San Diego, CA
Website: San Diego Automotive Museum
7. San Diego Bay Walk
If you and your family feel like going easy this weekend and want to avoid going on rides or hiking in the mountains, then you should take a trip to San Diego Bay Walk for a sunny Sunday evening. Going for a walk along the bay will provide several photo ops of the ocean while you get a nice tan or you can take your kids on a boat to catch some fish. You can all enjoy a nice meal while you watch the Air Races and there are plenty of gift shops nearby so you could take something home for remembering the weekend.
8. Fleet Science Center
For parents with kids who aspire to explore different aspects of science and want to learn more, stopping by the Fleet Science Center is the best option for providing an educational experience in a fun way. IMAX films are provided to help visitors learn about how the weather works and its impact on the planet, as well as national parks and all of the species that occupy them. The center also comes with the Young Scientist and Tinkerer’s Club program that provides games to make learning about science more fun. It is also the perfect place for schools thinking of somewhere new to take their students on field trips.
Fleet Science Center
Address: 1875 El Prado, 92101 San Diego, CA
Website: Fleet Science Center
Take your kids on an adventure in San Diego!
Get Trip101 in your inbox