Balboa Parkview website
Balboa Park Visitors Center
1549 El Prado
San Diego, CA 92101+1699
Balboa Park Description
Balboa Park is a masterpiece of urban planning -- a 1,200-acre park in the middle of downtown San Diego. If you visit one of the 15-plus museums and cultural venues there, be sure to spend some time exploring the park's unusual and varied topography as well. Or make an outing to the park an excursion of its own. You'll see cacti and canyons, and your kids will love racing around the sculptures and water fountains, playing pretend in tree roots that are as big as elephant trunks, and smelling flowers of every description (that bloom even in November!).
Live Music Venue
Folk Art Museum
Science & Nature Museum
Toddlers & Pre-K: The problem will be that there's too much for tots to do in Balboa Park, not too little. Don't miss a puppet show or the playground.
- Pepper Grove Tot Lot. The best playground around. Give your kids some downtime to swing on the monkey bars.
- Bring a picnic. There isn't much food offered in the park, and the lines are long. One of the most scenic spots to picnic is near the botanical garden.
- Allow extra time for parking. It's free, but lots fill up quickly. Schedule an extra 20 minutes in case you have to park far away.
Just the Facts
Hours: The Visitors' Center is open 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily, with expanded hours in the summer. Check: http://www.balboapark.org/info/ for updates.
Recommended Time: Half day
Reviews of Balboa Park
By CuisineAficionado November 15, 2007 | Sons: Ages 9 & 6 | San Diego, CA
What we loved:
Its great for boys and girls, since there is everything from cultural exhibits to planes, trains and cars.
What we didn't love:
Have yet to find something we dont like.
Our family loves Balboa Park. Being from San Diego, we also bring visiting relatives and friends. The boys love the aerospace museum, and when they were younger, they adored the model train museum. My friends little girl went wild for the dancers at the international cottages. All the children have an outstanding time at the science museum, with all its hands-on activities. And right outside is that fabulous fountain the kids all love.br/br/When the museums and exhibits get dull, we usually take the boys over to the lawn behind the history museum and let them run around until they are pooped. Its so much easier to load them back into the car after that; theyre so ready for a nap. Read More
By JulieAH November 15, 2007 | Son: Age 13
What we loved:
This easy going "steam" train is a hit with toddlers
All aboard! We rode this little "steam train" with my son every time we visited, starting when he was a toddler and up through kindergarten. The announcements from the engineer, the pickup in speed as you head through the tunnel, the changes in scenery and "landmarks" along the short journey are just exciting enough for little ones. Lush landscaping and gentle breezes are a treat for mom and dad as you chug along on this 10-15 min ride. br/br/ Read More