Our first stop in California was the Oceanside/San Diego area. It was a long stop, seeing as we stayed there for about a month. We had a lot to do there. First of all, we noticed a significant increase in the amount of trees. After having been in the desert for a while, we were glad to finally see some greenery.
The area we stayed in had a weekly Sunset Market, which we really enjoyed. There were at least 30 street food vendors, plus 20 (-ish) "other" vendors. We definitely would recommend the Sunset Market, and I would highly recommend getting a cannoli at the cannoli vendor. They provided exceptional service and incredible cannolis!
While we stayed in San Diego, we visited Legoland and Disneyland. Both of these were a first time for Nate, and I'd never been to Disneyland (Disney World is better). Nate really enjoyed it, and we really enjoyed watching him try each ride. We all had a good time. They're both great parks.
Another great experience we had while in Oceanside was going to the tide pools at Cabrillo National Monument. Here we saw crabs and some small fish, plus a spectacular view of the ocean! We saw similar views when we went to Torrey Pines, where we hiked up a large hill to some viewing areas.
We have heard, as I'm sure have you, that the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park are absolutely amazing, and I'm here to confirm that. The Atlanta Zoo is a great zoo, but the generally the animals don't move around much. At the San Diego Zoo, we saw monkeys swinging, rolling and climbing, giraffes walking around, a cheetah running down a 100 yard track, and many other animals actually doing things.
Another enjoyable activity that we did was to go to the Oceanside Pier. The Oceanside pier is a very long pier, and we tried to spot whales, since it was supposedly the season to see them. Sadly, we didn't spot any, but it was definitely fun trying to spot them.
In addition to all of these great activities, we visited the Fleet Museum in San Diego. This was a totally hands-on museum that all of us thoroughly enjoyed. We learned, in a fun way, about many things such as sound waves, gravity, seismic waves and more! We all learned some things.
We also visited Monument Mesa where we hiked, biked, and visited the border wall. See my last post for details.
Something that I wasn't expecting to see in California was sea lions. Nor was I thinking that we'd see tide pools. But we saw both in La Jolla (pronounced La Hoya). We really enjoyed seeing the sea lions bark and play in the water, and we also liked searching for creatures in the tide pools. This was a fun outing for sure.
During our time in San Diego, we got the chance to visit Ms. Simons, the Monts family, and the Sampat family on three separate outings. We really enjoyed even our quick meals with them.
All in all, San Diego is a great city. We definitely enjoyed a lot of things there, and I hope that if you ever go there that you'll look back at this post for ideas!