One of the great things about visiting San Diego is its ideal year-round weather. However, you may be visiting on one of the few days of the year when it’s not ideal. That’s no problem, there are plenty of fun things to do with the kids that will give you the San Diego experience. And don’t worry, by tomorrow it should be back to beach weather!
Inside San Diego:
Birch Aquarium – This is a great place to fill a morning or afternoon. The majority of the aquarium is inside and features sharks, seahorses, living coral reefs and more. There are a lot of opportunities for kids to interact with exhibits and the new Seahorse exhibit shouldn’t be missed. There is a café at the Aquarium; however it is outside, so you may want to bring a light jacket.
Balboa Park – Balboa Park is really a destination in good and bad weather. But when the weather isn’t cooperating, below are the museums my kids love to go to.
• San Diego Natural History Museum – Through September 2010, the museum is featuring an awesome dinosaur exhibit. Kids can watch a 3D movie on dinosaurs as well as examine life-size models of more than 35 different species.
• Rueben H. Fleet Science Center – We could spend all day here (and have). With seven galleries of hands-on science exhibits, an IMAX theatre, “kid-city”, and a motion simulator ride, it really has something for every age. The café and gift shop are both located inside the museum.
• San Diego Air & Space Museum – This Smithsonian affiliate features historic aircraft and spacecraft, Smithsonian and many one-of-a-kind artifacts!
• San Diego Model Railroad Museum – If you have a boy, then this little museum will be such a hit. Even my 9-year-old daughter enjoys it (most days). There is a small café/cart located near the Railroad Museum if you are looking for a light snack.
Sea Life Aquarium – Adjacent to Legoland, this aquarium features interactive play zones, hands-on encounters, engaging shows and feedings. Be sure to look out for Lego creatures and objects placed throughout the habitats. The kids will also stay entertained with a huge aquarium located in the Sea Life café.
Children’s Museum and Children’s Park – This museum is great for kids 10 and under. They do have a tween/teen area, but I have found kids under 10 get the most out of it. Be sure to make and take home your very own clay sculpture! There is also an organic café located inside the museum. You can also find parking underground.
USS Midway Museum – This is actually one of my favorite spots for kids and adults of all ages. Visitors can experience “life at sea” by touring galleys, officer’s quarters, engine rooms as well as getting inside real planes and helicopters. Most of the tour can take place inside (the flight deck is the only area that is exposed). The café is located inside as well.