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La Jolla Recreation and Parks

With pleasant weather year round and a coastline that is only steps away, there are plenty of outdoor adventures to be had in La Jolla. Much of the recreational opportunities revolve around the coast and its surrounding environment and ocean life that is abundant and enjoyed regularly by the community. Some of the popular beach spots include Windansea, Black's Beach, and La Jolla Cove.

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Windansea is always a favorite surf spot visited by locals who want to experience the surf and beach environment without the interruption of large crowds of beach goers and tourists. The beach is home to some well known surf breaks and has been a favorite surf spot for locals since the 1940s. Body boarding and snorkeling are also favorite ocean activities for the locals at this beach spot. In addition to its well known and respected surf reputation, Windansea is also commonly referred to as one of the most scenic beach locations in southern California. With its combination of both sandy and rocky terrain, Windansea is a perfect spot to watch the sun set over the ocean, holding true to the southern California stereotype of paradise.

Black's Beach is another great beach location with plenty of sand and surf for a variety of beach activities. Black's is also another popular surf destination for locals, where you can usually find a large crowd riding the waves. In addition to the sand and sea at this coastal spot, you will also find trails leading down to the beach as well as a hang gliding port just overhead. A word of caution, the north end of the beach allows nudity, so for those who prefer to be fully clothed, the south end enforces clothing and is much more suitable for family activities.

La Jolla Cove is known for its large numbers and visitors, however these particular visitors are not humans, they are in fact seals and sea lions, and they can be spotted at the cove on a daily basis swimming in the shallow waters or sunbathing around the sandy area. There are viewing areas around the cove to watch the seals and sea lions, who are easily entertained and equally entertaining. The cove is also a great beachy spot to bring a picnic to, as there is a large grassy area with picnic benches and tables to sit down at. Many people like to head to the cove to relax and enjoy the day, take a break from the downtown La Jolla shopping just up the street, or watch the sunset. There are also sidewalks that trail above the cove, making the cove a popular jogging and walking destination, as well as an ideal spot for amazingly scenic photos to be taken. Scuba diving is also another popular activity for the cove because of the expansive ocean area around.

La Jolla Cove is located at Coast Boulevard and Jenner Street in La Jolla

Birch Aquarium is always a good place to visit for sea life lovers and enthusiasts, both young and old. As the home habitat for many different sea animal and plant dwellers, the aquarium offers a glimpse into life under the sea that many people have no idea exists. The shark exhibit at the aquarium is always one that draws fascination and awe from its visitors, as it is home for more than 10 different species of sharks, including the leopard shark, blacktip and whitetip reef sharks, and the angel shark. Birch Aquarium's tidal pool center is another site of great discoveries and learning opportunities about sea life. The outdoor tide pool houses sea animals in their natural living environment with the proper conditions needed for them to survive, making this stop at the aquarium even more interesting because of its glimpse into an entirely different world under the water. In addition to the many animal habitat exhibits at Birch's , the aquarium also hosts special programs throughout the year that include family days and public programs, such as whale watching and kayaking, as well as a 3 minute simulator adventure ride. Fun is sure to be had by all at the aquarium because there is so much to do and see, and whether you spend the whole day touring the aquarium's different attractions or admiring the multitude of coral that the aquarium grows, Birch's Aquarium is a full of adventures and good times. The aquarium is open year round, with the exception of major holidays, from 9am to 5pm daily.

Birch's Aquarium is located at 2300 Expedition Way in La Jolla

For aquarium hours and more information, contact them at 858-534-FISH

La Jolla Cave is a natural ocean carved sea cave that houses a variety of sea plants and animals. Kayakers can tour the cave up close, as well as the other surrounding 6 caves. For those who prefer to see the caves dry, there are steps that lead down to the cave by way of an old wooden staircase. There are about 150 steps downward, but if you are willing to make the climb back up, it is well worth the trip. La Jolla Cave has been around the San Diego area for over 100 years, since the early 1900s, and is always a great afternoon adventure.

The cave is located at 1325 Cave Street in La Jolla.

For more information contact 858-459-0746

 

Parks:

Calumet Shoreline Park is situated right in the neighborhoods of La Jolla running along the coastline overlooking the Pacific Ocean and the popular surfing spot Rock Pile. Calumet Park is a great location for weddings and ceremonies because of its intimate location and ocean scenery. The maximum capacity is 80 people. The park is located at Calumet Avenue and Midway Street in La Jolla

For more information contact: 619-221-8901

Cuvier Shoreline Park is a small park that is commonly referred to as “the wedding bowl” because of its popularity for weddings along the La Jolla shore. The park has a capacity for 40 people and is reserved through permits. Cuvier Shoreline Park is located at Cuvier Street and Coast Boulevard in La Jolla.

For more information, contact: 619-245-1169

 

Ellen Browning Scripps Shoreline Park is also another popular wedding spot, and is also the most photographed area in San Diego. The park offers visitors an incredible view of the ocean and a large open grassy area to enjoy. Open year round, permits can be issued for special events and maximum capacity events depending on the season. The park is located at Prospect Street and Coast Boulevard

For more information, contact: 619-235-1169

 

Kellogg Park runs right along the shoreline at La Jolla shores and covers a large grassy area with plenty of room to run and play. La Jolla shores has always been a popular surf spot, as well as a favorite with kayakers and divers. Kellogg Park is a great location to spend the afternoon enjoying the day or to take a nap at under the palm trees. The park is located at Camino del Oro and Avenida de la Playa

For more information, contact: 619-235-1169

 

Covering a span of 6000 acres underwater, the San Diego La Jolla Ecological Underwater Reserve is an underwater adventure for swimmers, divers, and kayakers. The Ecological Reserve runs from La Jolla cove to the La Jolla shores, and only allows boats at a speed of 5 mph. This is the first of two areas of the park and is considered a marine refuge. The second part of the park is the Scripps Institute of Oceanography's Marine Life Refuge, which also serves as a research spot for Scripps. Included in this underwater world are two artificial reefs and a vast array of underwater life that call this park home. This underwater park is more intense than SeaWorld and will give you the close up encounters with marine life when those plexiglass windows just won't do.

San Diego La Jolla Ecological Underwater Reserve is located at the La Jolla Shores in La Jolla

 

Recreation Centers:

La Jolla Recreation Center was built almost 100 years ago, and today is considered a historical site in San Diego. The recreation center includes 3 basketball courts, a children's play area and picnic area, tennis courts, and a building that has 2 meeting rooms inside.

La Jolla Recreation Center is located at 615 Prospect Drive in La Jolla

For more information contact: 858-552-1658.

 

At the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center there are plenty of activities and programs to keep the entire family entertained. The community center offers a variety of programs for everyone, including single adults, teens, and children. Everyone is welcome here, and the entertainment options are endless. During the summer there are many youth programs to keep the kids busy and having fun, one of which is Camp Jaycee. Camp Jaycee includes: youth camps, theater camps, sports camps, special interest camps, and traditional camps and runs throughout the course of the summer. There is also a large sports and workout facility at the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center that caters to everybody's workout needs. The fitness center includes:

  • Certified Personal Trainers
  • Massage Therapy
  • Free Aerobics & Aerobic Kickboxing Classes
  • One-on-One Pilates training studio
  • Yoga, Feldenkrais
  • Babysitting
  • Two aerobic/dance studios
  • Spacious locker room facilities with steamroom (men) and sauna (women)

There are also tennis courts, Olympic sized pool, gymnasium, and recreational park with a softball field, outdoor amphitheater, and a picnic and barbecue area.

Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center is located at 4126 Executive Drive in La Jolla

For more information, contact: 858-457-3030

 

La Jolla YMCA offers a variety of programs for kids and adults, including a workout facility and summer sports programs and camps for kids. The YMCA also has a pool that is available for recreational, instructional, competitive, and specialty purposes. Special programs offered at the center include programs that encompass both the wellness of the mind and body into various classes such as yoga, martial arts, tai chi, and flexibility classes.

The La Jolla YMCA is open year round and is located at 8355 Cliffridge Avenue in La Jolla.

For more information contact: 858-453-3483.

 

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