Neighborhood Spotlight: La Jolla

Discover San Diego’s Neighborhoods with our Summer Sweepstakes. Join us every week as we showcase the best in what to do, where to eat, and where to stay in some of San Diego’s unique neighborhoods. Be sure to check back for exciting insider tips, giveaways, and more! This week’s spotlight is on beautiful La Jolla.

Dramatic coastline. Spectacular views. World-class restaurants. These are just a few of the reasons why La Jolla is one of the most desirable locations to visit in San Diego.

The scenic La Jolla coastline

1. The Beaches

La Jolla’s big draw for locals and tourists alike is its seven-miles of dramatic coastline spanning from Del Mar to Pacific Beach.

  • Black’s Beach – A de facto nude beach and an ideal spot for watching hang-gliders soar on the thermal updrafts created by the 300-foot sea cliffs.
  • La Jolla Shores – A mile-long crescent of prime sand beach favored by active beachgoers and families. Here, small boats can be launched directly into the sea from the end of Avenida De La Playa.
  • La Jolla Cove – A protected marine sanctuary and an ideal site for scuba diving and snorkeling. The Cove’s cliffs are riddled with sea caves and is home to “Sunny Jim Cave,” the only known cave on the California coastline that is accessible by land.
  • The Children’s Pool – Some of La Jolla’s most notable residents, the seals, have taken up permanent residence at what was built as a beach for families and kids.
  • Marine St. and Windansea – Looking for the local’s beach?  Head to Marine St. Beach or Windansea, two legendary surf spots known for thunderous waves and dynamic sunsets.

Paragliding Torrey Pines

2. The Great Outdoors

La Jolla is also home to Torrey Pines, where outdoor adventurers go to experience great hiking trails, soar above the Pacific, and play golf at a world-famous course.

  • Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve – A day-use park offering hiking trails (for every experience level), as well as guided nature walks.
  • Torrey Pines Gliderport – The launch-site for hang gliders, paragliders and glider planes. Visitors can fly tandem (with a professional pilot) or solo (with the appropriate credentials) for a fee.
  • Torrey Pines Golf Course – A top-ranked golf destination that boasts two of the most picturesque championship 18-hole golf courses in the world. Situated on cliffs above the Pacific Ocean, Golfweek Magazine heralds Torrey as one of the “Best Municipal Courses” in America.

Sculpture Garden at MCASD in La Jolla

3. The Arts (and Culture)

La Jolla also boasts a vibrant art community and is on the cutting-edge of research.

  • Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La Jolla – Houses a permanent collection of more than 4,000 works created after 1950.
  • Stuart Collection –  Located at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), the Stuart Collection is made up of 17 installations by leading artists of our time; the large-scale creations are set throughout the university campus.
  • La Jolla Playhouse – A Tony Award-winning theatre that presents bold and innovative productions from May through November.
  • Birch Aquarium at Scripps – Perched on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Birch Aquarium is the public outreach center for the Scripps Institution of Oceanography.  The aquarium features more than 60 habitats of fishes and invertebrates.

Shopping Prospect St.

4. The Shopping

Prospect St., the center of La Jolla’s bustling business district, offers upscale boutiques, art galleries and world-renowned restaurants.  The shopping scene is known for designer fashions, high-end jewelry, ethnic artifacts, rare antiques, and exotic cars. If window shopping is not your thing, fear not! While La Jolla’s reputation for luxury goods (at price tags to match) is not to be exaggerated, the every woman (or man) is sure to find affordable treasures within mass retailers like Banana Republic and The Gap; the Roxy surf shop; or the colorful children’s boutique, Fresh Produce.

Check back on Wednesday for the best dining spots in La Jolla, and for our first giveaway in the San Diego Neighborhood’s Sweepstakes.

This entry was posted in Insider Tips and tagged , , , by Courtney. Bookmark the permalink.

About Courtney

I love fashion, Gerbera daisies, and yoga. I recently moved back to San Diego after 10 years of living in LA. I couldn't be more excited to rediscover the best activities, views, food, and more in this amazing city. My husband of two years is my partner in crime (thankfully he loves exploring SD as much as I do).

What would you do on your ideal San Diego Day?

My perfect day would start with a cup of tea (no matter the temperature outside). A breakfast burrito from Pipe's would definitely be in order. Then I'd go for a leisurely bike ride or walk at the beach with my husband. We’d eat sushi for dinner, watch a movie at home, and drink a glass of red wine.

What is your favorite San Diego outdoor activity?

It’s impossible to pick one thing! I love biking, walking, shopping, dining outside.

Do you prefer burgers and beer or linguine and red wine?

Linguine and red wine. Done!

Latest music purchases for my iPod player are…

Josh Tuner, Keith Urban, the Best of Elton John

4 thoughts on “Neighborhood Spotlight: La Jolla

  1. I love San Diego, and especially love La Jolla Coves,haven’t been in a while due to family hardships, however, it is one of the most amazing places to go in the summer!!!!My kids love it!! And so do I!!!

  2. we’ll love to take the kids to La Jolla since we live in the desert part of San Diego it’s a nice way to scape the hot weather and explore San Diego staycation stile!!!

  3. I’ve had a few ‘perfect moments’ in my life. You know the kind, where time stands still and you feel as if you are truly at one with the planet and nature. Well, one of my best perfect moments was snorkeling in La Jolla Cove. I was surrounded by tiny, fast fish and there were so many of them, they were all i could see in every direction. They were so fast I had no idea what they were. They circled so close, engulfing me without touching me and as if by some secret command they would all change direction at once. I could feel them change the current around me. Equally amazing was the pelicans and sea gulls diving into the water to scoop them up, just inches from me. This might have lasted only 5-10 minutes, but it is still one of the most memorable days of my life.

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