Maren

The Life Aquatic on San Diego’s Mission Bay

Mission Bay Water Skier and Boat
Mission Bay Water Skier and Boat

Waterskiing on Mission Bay is a popular San Diego activity.

San Diego’s Mission Bay is the largest aquatic park of its kind in the world. Comprised of a 4,600-acre aquatic playground surrounded by 27 miles of meandering shoreline and grassy parks, a day spent on Mission Bay can include an assortment of outdoors water activities, from the active to the relaxing, for everyone from the watersport novice to the experienced professional.

Pick your activity at the Mission Bay Aquatic Center

Mission Bay

San Diego’s Mission Bay is a 4,600-acre aquatic playground perfect for sailing, waterskiing, kayaking and more.

Don’t know exactly what you’re looking for? A great place to start is at the Mission Bay Aquatics Center. Located at the south end of Santa Clara Point, it is located in the center of Mission Bay and boasts a diverse mix of watersports equipment and instruction. Learn how to sail, windsurf, wakeboard, surf, kayak, row, or stand up paddle, through a huge selection of class levels and times. Mission Bay Aquatic Center also has rentals available for those with previous experience on the water.

Where: 1001 Santa Clara Place, Mission Beach, CA 92109
> Find out more about the Mission Bay Aquatic Center

Cruise aboard the Bahia Belle

Bahia Belle on Mission Bay

Relax on a sunset cruise across Mission Bay aboard the Bahia Belle.

If you’d prefer to relax on the water and let someone else take hold of the wheel, the Bahia Belle sunset cruise is what you are looking for. The Bahia Belle is a Mississippi-style sternwheeler that cruises the waters of Mission Bay between the Bahia Resort and its sister property, the Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa. The evening cruises offer a relaxing evening of cocktails and dancing as you glide seamlessly across the water. Tickets are $10 for adults and $3 for children under 12 years old. Guests at the Catamaran or the Bahia enjoy a complimentary cruise aboard the Bahia Belle.

Where: Bahia Resort Hotel – 998 West Mission Bay Drive, San Diego CA 92109
> Find out more about Sternwheeler Cruises on Mission Bay

Sportfishing Excursions from Mission Bay

Saltwater Sportfishing - Seaforth Boat Rentals

Time for some Saltwater Fishing. Photo courtesy of Seaforth Boat Rentals

Whether you fancy an early AM, twilight or overnight trip, Seaforth Sportfishing offers daily sportsfishing trips that launch from Mission Bay and head out to the Pacific Ocean to try for yellowtail, rockfish, and sculpin. Private charters are also available aboard one of their 16 charter boats.

Where: 1717 Quivira Rd. San Diego, CA 92109
> Find out more about Seaforth Sportfishing

> Discover more of San Diego’s Mission Bay

What’s your favorite thing to do on the waters of Mission Bay?

Suzzanne

25 Free Things to Do With Kids This Fall in San Diego

Enjoy A Bonfire with the Kids

Fall is a great time for the kids to explore many of San Diego’s free outdoor activities including the beach, hiking sports, sightseeing and more.

Below are just 25 of the free things kids can do this fall in San Diego:

  1. Head to one of San Diego’s 33 beaches, all open to the public, and perfect for body surfing, boogie boarding, building sandcastles, collecting seashells and basking in the sun.
  2. Catch a magnificent Pacific sunset and watch sea lions play along the shoreline at La Jolla Cove, one of the most spectacular natural settings in the world.
  3. Take free fly-fishing lessons from the San Diego Fly Fishers club on Sunday mornings from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM at Lake Murray, located in La Mesa. If you don’t have your own gear, arrive early for a free equipment loan.
  4. Sample some of the more than 200 varieties of fresh produce grown in San Diego at one of the region’s many Farmer’s Markets, held daily at locations throughout the county.
  5. Bike, walk or play along Mission Bay Park’s many trails. Bikers, walkers and joggers share more than 20 miles of scenic paths winding through sunlit and shade near the shoreline.
  6. Rollerblade, skateboard, or bicycle along the Mission Beach and Pacific Beach Boardwalk, a scenic three-mile boardwalk running along the coastline of these lively neighborhoods.
  7. Take a scenic drive to Mt. Laguna to hike, bike or picnic while enjoying the fresh mountain air whispering through the pines.
  8. Hike the trails of Torrey Pines State Reserve and see the rare and elegant Torrey pine trees, a number of animal species and miles of unspoiled beaches below.
  9. Visit Mission Trails Regional Park featuring a state-of-the-art Visitors Center where guests explore and learn about the wonders of nature and the native people who once lived on the land. The park also offers over 40 miles of natural and developed hiking and biking trails.
  10. Go scuba diving or snorkeling off San Diego’s shores to see spectacular creatures of the sea. La Jolla Shores and Cove offer some of the clearest waters on the California Coast, as well as miles of protected underwater preserve to explore.
  11. Walk along the downtown Embarcadero and view impressive public art sculptures, tributes, and memorials set along San Diego Bay. The artworks celebrate San Diego’s international ties, cultural diversity, military significance and unique oceanfront environment.
  12. Watch tail-waggin’, Frisbee-catchin’ and stick-fetchin’ dogs splash in the surf. Man’s best friend is permitted to roam leash-free at all hours of the day on designated dog beaches in Ocean Beach, Coronado and Del Mar.
  13. Talk a walk through Balboa Park, the largest urban cultural park in the United States, and discover its beautiful Spanish Colonial-Revival architecture and glorious gardens. Also, visitors can take advantage of the Park’s variety of other free offerings, including ranger-led walking tours at 11:00 AM on Tuesdays and Sundays.
  14. Gather friends, family and firewood for a cozy beach bonfire at one of San Diego County’s bonfire-friendly beaches, located in Coronado, Ocean Beach, Oceanside, Mission Beach and Pacific Beach.
  15. Go on a self-guided walking tour of The Stuart Collection, a display of contemporary sculptures scattered throughout the University of California, San Diego campus in La Jolla. Tour maps are available at the Gilman Drive campus entrance.
  16. Spend an afternoon at Tidelands Park in Coronado. The park’s 22 bayfront acres feature four baseball fields, a playground, skatepark, picnic tables, small beach with an exercise course, boat access, fishing pier and bike and pedestrian paths.
  17. Explore the clear shallow tide pools of La Jolla Cove and Point Loma when the tide is low and the pools are teeming with aquatic life.
  18. Visit Julian in San Diego’s East County and enjoy this quaint, historic mining town that grew into San Diego County’s second largest urban center during the Southern California gold rush of 1869.
  19. Take a drive to the top of Mt. Soledad in La Jolla, home of the Mt. Soledad Veterans War Memorial, for breathtaking, 360-degree views of San Diego. Spectacular views also await at the top of Mt. Helix in La Mesa, offering visitors a birds-eye glimpse of San Diego’s East County communities.
  20. Witness the living legacy of California’s birthplace in Old Town State Historic Park, San Diego’s first “downtown.” The six-block park features 12 acres of Mexican lore and historical sites presented in shops, restaurants, museums and several carefully preserved or restored adobe and wooden buildings.
  21. Visit the U.S. Olympic Training Center, the nation’s first warm-weather, year-round Olympic training facility, located in Chula Vista. Free guided tours of the 150-acre lakefront facility are offered at 11:00 AM on Saturday; tours begin at the Copley Visitor Center. Self-guided tours are also available 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Mondays – Saturdays.
  22. Visit downtown San Diego’s Seaport Village for hours of free entertainment, leisurely strolling and window shopping. Enjoy a laid-back day of hanging out in the grass and watching the many passing yachts and ships on picturesque San Diego Bay.
  23. Fly a kite along the grassy field in the Tecolote Shores of Mission Bay Park, a 4,600-acre aquatic park.
  24. Hang 10 at the California Surf Museum, which houses a permanent collection of historic boards, photographs and videos on Highway 101 in Oceanside. During free admission day on Tuesdays, visitors can explore its colorful and educational display on the sport of surfing and the legends who braved the waters over generations.
  25. Head over to La Mesa for the annual Oktoberfest. Traditional German celebration in San Diego’s East County featuring dancing, Bavarian bands, arts and crafts and more.

Even More Kids Free Fun this October

Visiting with the kids during October? After they have checked everything off the list above, save on other attractions, food and more with over a hundred kids free offers.

> Browse Over 100 Kids Free San Diego Offers for this October

Know of any other great free fall activities for kids? Tell us in the comments below.