San Diego, California, Attractions

San Diego, California, Attractions
The city of San Diego is filled with a number of local attractions that can provide you with entertainment, as well as a learning environment for all ages. The attractions are also close to several recreational activities, such as the Torrey Pines State Reserve, Point Loma, Noble Canyon, San Diego Harbor and the Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.

Balboa Park

Balboa Park is one of the largest urban parks in the nation that covers over 1,200 acres of gardens, museums, hiking trails, lakes and the San Diego Zoo. Balboa Park includes a 2-acre Japanese Friendship Garden, the Marston House, which was built in 1905, the Museum of San Diego History, the San Diego Air and Space Museum, and the San Diego Museum of Art. The area also includes the California Native Plant Garden, the Desert Garden with over 1,300 plants, the Palm Canyon with 450 palm trees and the Veteran's Memorial Garden. Balboa Park is open 24 hours a day. A visitor's center provides information about all of the attractions and trails within the park. Tours of various locations within the park are also available, as well as an overall tour, led by the Balboa Park Rangers.

Balboa Park
1549 El Prado
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 239-0512

Cabrillo National Monument

Cabrillo National Monument was established to dedicate the site where European explorer, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, first stepped onto the West Coast in 1542. The site also includes the Old Point Loma Lighthouse, which was established in 1855 to guide ships into San Diego Bay, as well as Fort Rosecrans, which was established in 1852 to guard the entrance to the bay. The visitor's center at the Cabrillo National Monument provides information, historic maps and artifacts about the peninsula, and also exhibits the "Age of Exploration." The park is generally self-guided, but there are tours of the area that are led by park rangers, including tours of the interior of the Old Point Loma Lighthouse. The Cabrillo National Monument is also a great place to explore and take in all of the sightseeing opportunities, with miles of coastal beaches and native wildlife ranging from Chaparral birds and the Mexican long-tongued bat to alligator lizards and Pacific gray whales.

Cabrillo National Monument
1800 Cabrillo Memorial Drive
San Diego, CA 92106
(619) 557-5450

Serra Museum in Presidio Park

One of the most recognizable symbols in San Diego, the Serra Museum is located in Presidio Park on the site where Father Junipero Serra founded the Mission San Diego de Alcala. The Mission was built in 1769 and served as the first mission in Alta, California, as well as a presidio. The Serra Museum, which was constructed in 1928, features a collection of artifacts, maps, letters and other memorabilia from the mission days, as well as a museum store where you can purchase replicas of artifacts and information about the mission's history. The Serra Museum also provides educational programs for children, adults, teachers and schools, with speakers who give lessons about the mission and its heritage. The museum sits on a hill inside Presidio Park along with landmarks in the park like the Padre Cross, Inspiration Point, Palm Canyon and the Arbor.

Serra Museum in Presidio Park
2727 Presidio Drive
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 232-6203

Article Written By Carl Pruit

Carl Pruit has been a freelance writer since 2005, specializing in service journalism and travel. His work has appeared on various websites. Born and raised in California, Pruit attended Contra Costa Community College in San Pablo, Calif. and received an associate degree in the administration of justice.

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