Are you looking for a perfect family vacation in San Diego? We all know that kids need to be entertained with activities and fun. But how can you make planning easy when there are so many great things to see and do in San Diego? I’ve done all the work for you and have compiled our three favorite destinations and attractions—all kid-approved! So get ready to pack your bags because this will be an unforgettable trip!
Heads up: Sunny San Diego wasn’t living up to its name in November – more like Chilly Cloudy Diego. However, San Diego is a stunning city – it’s no wonder why people from around California flock to experience its beauty. Come wintertime things can go from chilly to hot. Keep an eye on the forecast before braving those cooler temperatures and making your way down for some sunny California fun. We started our morning in cozy winter garb, and before we knew it the sun had transformed us into summer attire. What I am trying to say is… bring layers.
Where to Stay in San Diego
This blog post is coming soon
Rent a Car in San Diego
Unlike Los Angeles, San Diego isn’t the land of flashy and fancy cars. Instead, you can fit in with a humble ride – think Hyundai or another small car that won’t break your budget. The simple fact is you will need a car to get around San Diego. This is your chance to save some money so go ahead and rent the compact car that will fit all your luggage.
San Diego 3-For-1 Ticket
Admission to SeaWorld San Diego, San Diego Zoo, and San Diego Zoo Safari Park
Get the ultimate San Diego experience with just one ticket. Enjoy three thrilling attractions – SeaWorld for a splash of adventure, The Zoo to connect with nature’s wild side, and Safari Park if you want an up-close encounter. It’s triple the fun in sunny Southern California all rolled into one.
SeaWorld San Diego
When the opportunity arose to check out Sea World San Diego, there was no way we weren’t gonna take it – having already been in love with its sister park in San Antonio for years. Sea World San Antonio is by far one of our favorite parks in Texas. So we were thrilled to put Sea World San Diego on our schedule. While these parks offer generally the same fun activities like rides, shows, and exhibits, each has some unique elements thrown in to keep you guessing. My family was smiling from ear to ear the entire time.
If you want to have the most fun at a park, here’s my advice: come when it first opens and feed those sea animals. You’ll get to watch them eagerly devour their food – plus it’s really fun entertainment to watch. If you wait until later in the day, though, their appetite tends to go out the window – so make sure to time your visit right.
Get ready to have a wild and wet day at Sea World. If you really want the best experience, plan your visit around the shows. But even if you don’t, be prepared for some extra splashy fun–better grab those ponchos moms. After all, that’s the real point of being there -you must get wet.
Unlike other parks it’s super easy to snag a prize – just look around and you’ll see folks strutting around with their prizes! To make life easier, play later on in the day so that carrying your award is not a pain in the butt.
My best advice is to go to Sea World first. Start your adventure off right and kick the pain to the curb by going to Sea World first! With three days of walking ahead, your legs could chafe and if the seawater hits that area it could really burn.
San Diego Safari
Get ready for an up-close encounter with furry friends from around the world. Even though everyone usually raves about this safari, I think my favorite was actually the San Diego Zoo – because honestly, who doesn’t love the largest zoo in the United States? However, the Safari Park is like an oasis for wildlife – it’s a whopping 1,800 acres of wide open spaces to explore. You can expect fewer animals than the usual zoo visit, but it’s more room for those adorable animals to stretch their legs, which is extremely important.
How it works is you’re supposed to stay on the trail and you will get to see wild animals in their natural habitat (built habitat) – so close you could almost high-five them. It is a really cool experience. Literally, there are no fences stopping them from coming over and saying “hi”. They can come to you but you are not allowed to go to them. Look at the adorable baby Joey below and her momma.
It is included with your admission ticket. The Africa Tram tour – it’s a 20-30 minute ride, perfect for your inner animal enthusiast. Get ready to go eye-to-eye with some of nature’s most majestic creatures. We spotted giraffes strolling gracefully and rhinos wandering around open plains, plus zebras grazing peacefully beside cape buffalo and gazelles frolicking their way across acres of land. Also, all kinds of birds singing sweet melodies from nearby treetops as well as lions roaring loud ‘n proud within special habitats – not to mention cheetahs zooming about too. All ages are welcome so don’t miss out on this epic African experience today. The lines can get up to 1 to 2 hours during mid-day so when you enter the park go straight to the African Tram or wait until the very end of the day. Do not wait until the middle of the day otherwise you will be waiting in lines for hours.
They serve beer and wine at the park. If you purchase the cup you can save $2 on refills. You can use this cup at the San Diego Zoo & San Diego Safari.
San Diego Zoo
Animal lovers in the family? San Diego Zoo’s got ya covered. San Diego Zoo is the largest zoo in America and a total must for your trip to sunny or cloudy San Diego. This zoo is massive so plan to be there all day. Show up early and plan to leave when it closes.
Ready to ‘monkey’ around? With the San Diego Zoo app, your wildest zoo dreams can come true. Find out where all of the animals are hanging out with GPS-enabled maps, and find the best dining spots along with the latest activities.
Bus at the San Diego Zoo
If you want to experience the best of San Diego’s Zoo while taking a break from all that walking, hop on board the free bus tour – it’ll be an adventure. It is a great way to give your tired feet a break.
Skyfari Gondola at San Diego Zoo
Give those tired feet some relief. Treat your family to a well-deserved break from the wilds of the San Diego Zoo – hop on Skyfari Gondola for an aerial adventure beyond all other zoo experiences. Did I mention it is free? My daughter wanted to name this video…” no Reed don’t”. He’s trying to aggravate his sister because she’s scared of heights.
Food and Drinks in San Diego Zoo
Want to make a day out at the park more affordable? Pack some snacks, drinks, and your fave lunch from home. No coolers are allowed so pop them into your backpack. If you plan to have lunch at the parks as we did just bring your own drinks and snacks to save money.
Where to eat in San Diego
This blog post is coming soon.
So there you have it, the perfect trip to San Diego for any family—hours of fun and plenty of memories made! What’s not to love? Whether you’ve been planning a trip to San Diego for years or just want a fun surprise for the kids, Glam Escapes has got you covered. From researching the best attractions to getting you the best stay at a reasonable price, we make sure each part of your journey is enjoyable. Plus you can leave the stress at home because we guarantee an unforgettable experience! So why wait any longer? Let Glam Escapes book your next trip and get ready for an amazing vacation in San Diego! Click here to learn more.Read more: The Best Things to do in San Diego with Kids
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