Called San Diego’s water wonderland, America’s largest manmade aquatic park was literally built for a good time. Its endless beaches, calm-water bays, bike paths, golf course, amusement parks, and resorts beckon to all. There’s no shortage of perfect ways to spend a day in Mission Bay — jet-skiing, sailing, at SeaWorld, in a spa, all of the above — but here are a few excellent options.
Morning in Mission Bay
Runners and cyclists can start their day by working up a sweat on the 12-mile-long bike path that snakes around the bay. For some morning Joe, head to Better Buzz Coffee Roasters. This local favorite is just about a block from Montezuma Bay. Or for something more substantial, grab a bite at Olive Café, Truckstop, or The Mission. You can’t go wrong at any of the numerous cafes lining Mission Beach.
Spend the morning on the water with the help of Mission Bay Aquatic Center or Aqua Adventures. They can outfit you with virtually any watercraft. They’ll get you paddling a SUP, kayak, or outrigger canoe, or sailing a small boat in no time. Those who want to hit a few putts should swing over to the public 8-hole, par 58 Mission Bay Golf Course. Others can get their kicks playing foot golf and disc golf, which are available, too.
When hunger strikes, head straight for nearby Seisel’s Meats. There you’ll find the makings of an epic picnic, barbecue, or on-the-go lunch. They’ve got everything from fresh fish and frozen boar to Reuben sandwiches, pies, fruits, veggies, and prepared deli foods. Throw down a blanket anywhere along the bay’s 27 miles of park- and beach-lined shores. Or, to grill up on the bay, fire up some coals at Crown Point, Bonita Cove, Mission Point, or Ski Beach.
Whether you’re ready to nap off your food coma with some sunbathing or burn off lunch with beach volleyball, you’ll find an ideal spot. The sandy beach of Sail Bay is among the places with volleyball courts.
Take the opportunity to visit SeaWorld. When you’ve communed with orcas and walruses, get a load of the Electric Eel — not the sea creature, but San Diego’s fastest roller coaster. Then, take on the brand new Tidal Twister ride.
The historic Belmont Park offers another theme park vibe entirely. Board the wooden Giant Dipper roller coaster for a memorable view of the sunset. After the coaster, try to find a way out of the escape room or test your aim with laser tag.
Grab the family and some firewood and claim one of Mission Bay’s many fire pits at South Shores Park. Or if you didn’t have a chance to hit the links of the Mission Bay Golf Course, amble over for some illuminated night golf.
Take in San Diego’s rightfully famous sunsets with a cruise aboard the Bahia Belle. This three-story, Mississippi-style sternwheeler glides between Bahia Resort Hotel and Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa.
Don’t worry, there’s no need to leave Mission Bay for a perfect dinner or a blissful night’s sleep! The numerous hotels and resorts provide endless opportunities to partake of excellent restaurants, spas, pools, and accommodations. No matter what you and your family are seeking, you’re sure to find it at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina, The Dana on Mission Bay, Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa, Paradise Point, Bahia Resort Hotel or any of the many others.