San Diego, CA: Sun and Surf

This was the first time we had taken on “hitchhikers” during the tour :) . Hitchhikers named Mom and Dad, that is! Having them ride in the RV with us was such a treat…it was so fun to share that experience with them and see the beauty of the southwest together. The sand dunes and mountains…wow! I had no idea how much the landscape changed in such a short distance. We arrived in San Diego around supper time and headed to our campground. After quickly getting settled, we jumped back into the car and jetted just a few minutes down the road to La Jolla Cove. We found parking and as we walked toward the water…and we were overwhelmed with the beauty of the sunset and the power of the ocean’s waves crashing just below us. It was so quiet except for the sound of the water. I could have stayed there all night…but we decided to venture up the sidewalk and check out the shops and restaurants. La Jolla is such a neat area, with a diverse mixture of people roaming the streets.

The next day, we left early and headed to Pacific Beach and Mission Beach. After seeing the ocean in San Diego…I immediately fell in love with the West Coast. The ocean is soooo different than the east coast…definitely more my style (bigger waves and a bit warmer!). We had so much fun just hanging out on the boardwalk for hours. The people watching could have kept us occupied for days…the surfers, the bikers, the skaters, the vacationers, the volleyball players. It’s so sunny, and everyone is so happy to be out in that sunshine. There is definitely a mix of people here as well…as you can see from the real estate. There are “surf shacks” with run down exteriors and surfboards and wetsuits lined up in a row next to huge, luxurious homes. Someday, we want to come back with our entire family and rent a condo on the boardwalk so we really CAN sit for days watching the people go by :) .

Being in a larger city, I just had to see if they had a raw restaurant…and they did! Cilantro Live! was located not too far from where we were (although nothing is too far in San Diego!)…so we headed there for some lunch. We had a great time trying out all different kinds of raw foods, including desserts! You can read more about what we had on my food blog, Happy Foody. If you have never been to a raw food restaurant…seek one out the next time you are in a larger metropolitan area. They are definitely a fun culinary experience, whether or not you eat a raw diet.

The Point Loma Tide Pools were next on our list. We ended up spending a good chunk of our day here because the ocean was just so captivating! :) There were crabs to chase, surfers to watch, and apparently there are whales, but we didn’t see any. There are also octopus, sea anemone, sculpin, starfish, lobster and abalone! A little tide pool ecosystem to explore. Everyone kind of did their own thing…mom and I sat and talked, Dad explored off on his own, and Matt and Bella had fun finding sea creatures. It felt so preserved there…like you were at the end of the world. Loved it.

We were all getting hungry and so decided to drive over to Coronado Island to grab a bite to eat. We settled on sushi and were able to get a seat on the ocean-front patio! What fun! After that, we walked up and down the beach…checking out the famous Hotel del Coronado and all of the busyness around it. There was a big dinner event in the works (right on the beach) and it was fun to peek in on that. Bella fell asleep in the sling…so we kept walking and went to find some coffee to sip while we watched the sunset. The light and surroundings were so ethereal and peaceful…it was hard to pull ourselves away!

The next day, we headed to Shelter Island to see the parade of Naval Ships coming into the harbor. And after that, we spent most of the day in and around Seaport Village…taking in the sights and watching the Red Bull Air Race. Wow! Talk about amazing! There were people EVERYWHERE trying to get a glimpse of the airplanes in action. The little area around the bay was packed. We had lunch in the village, Bella got a Little Mermaid painting on her arm by the resident face paint artist :) and then wandered out to watch the start of the races. Those little airplanes can sure get your heart racing! We wandered down to the Gaslamp District and then headed back the La Jolla “Children’s Beach” to see the seals.

The beaches at La Jolla are these cute little things…with cool rocks lining them. We spent a lot of time playing in the sand and watching the skimboarders. The colors of the flowers were so vibrant against the sandy rocks and the blue water. True bliss. Aaaaah. It’s moments like those that I truly remember how blessed we are to be able to see all of these sights as a family. Be sure to click on the photo above and look at it enlarged…it’s like a “Where’s Waldo” photo. Can you find my Dad!? We decided we liked the La Jolla area too much to leave, so we found a cute little restaurant near the water so we could eat, relax, and decompress from our busy day! After that, we made one last trip to Cilantro for dessert…and then called it a night.

Back at the RV park, we all went hot tubbing and then crashed! We crammed a lot of things into just a few days…but it was so worth it. The next morning, we loaded up the RV and took mom and dad to the San Diego airport. It was, of course, hard to say goodbye after being with them for so long. We always have such an amazing time when we’re together. We waved goodbye to them sadly, but were excited…knowing that more life-changing adventures were awaiting us.


  1. Looks like you were able to take a lot in from our beautiful city. Glad the weather was amazing (but why wouldn’t it be, it’s SD). Seems likes you guys really hit most of the areas. My fiancee and I are getting married on Shelter Island in about a month.

    Comment by Carlee — July 5, 2008 @ 9:51 am

  2. So we really do need to go back to San Diego at some point!! It looks and sounds just amazing.

    Comment by Laura O — July 7, 2008 @ 11:53 am

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