Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California

1800 Cabrillo Memorial Dr, San Diego, California 92106

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About Cabrillo National Monument

Average user rating (21 Reviews)

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Adam F and 1 other parent have been here

Ratings by kids' ages

  • Tots (0-2)
  • Little kids (3-5)
  • Big kids (6-8)
  • Tweens (9-12)
  • Teens (13+)

Tips for Families


Address: 1800 Cabrillo Memorial Dr, San Diego, California 92106

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Phone: 619-557-5450
URL: http://www.nps.gov/cabr/index.htm
Hours: Mon-Sun 9 am - 5 pm. Closed on Christmas.
Price: $5 parking fee per vehicle, $3 entrance fee for bikes, motorcycles or walk-ins More Info

Recent User Reviews

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  • My overall rating:

    My ratings by kids age

    • Big kids (6-8)
    • Tweens (9-12)
  • Visited: 2011-06-01
  • Submitted: 2013-12-19 18:58:36.0
  • Traveled with:

    Big Kids (6-8) and Tweens (9-12)

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History, Tidepools, a Lighthouse and maybe a Whale

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Tips for Families

The tidepools are best from December - March when low tide occurs during park hours and are accessible via car on your right after you enter the park. We weren't here at the right time but these tidepools are considered worth the trip.

Suggestions for nearby family-friendly accommodations

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Elmwood Park, New Jersey

  • My overall rating:

    My ratings by kids age

    • Little kids (3-5)
    • Big kids (6-8)
  • Visited: 2012-12-01
  • Submitted: 2013-08-10 04:01:56.0
  • Traveled with:

    Little Kids (3-5) and Big Kids (6-8)

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Unique combination of fascinating coastal nature walk and awesome city and ocean views.

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Tips for Families

-- Check the Park website for the Tide calendar -- you want to coordinate your tide pool visit with low tide, particularly when there is a full or new moon. -- There are limited parking spaces by the tide pools, so get to the lot early. -- The rocks are slippery, so be careful with toddlers (mine had a tantrum when we attempted to restrict his mobility). It's best to have kids in pool shoes and bathing suits because it is easy to get wet.

Suggestions for nearby family-friendly accommodations

We stayed at the Homewood Suites San Diego Airport. This chain gets it right with affordable rooms, solid breakfast, billiards room, and basketball court. The hotel is in a shopping center right off a park and also near several restaurants and a market. It is also conveniently located to downtown.

Suggestions for nearby family-friendly restaurants

Old Venice has very good quality food and a significant discount if you eat before 6 pm. It has an adult atmosphere, but the staff were all very friendly and tolerant of my tired kids.

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Submitted by: Jen S.

One of my favorite spots in San Diego by far. If you pay $5 to get in, your ticket is good for 7 days. Why would one want to come back a few times in a single week, you ask? There is a great running trail with steep hills that offers a good workout, and you get amazing views while getting your heart rate up. There are also some fun tide pools to explore, and walking trails along the sea. So at the monument itself, there are amazing views of the city, and of the Naval airport. It is rather fun to watch the jets take off and land, and see the big ships passing by. There is also a little museum up there that is great for kids in explaining the history of the area, and the local wildlife. There is a lighthouse t...

Submitted by: Dmitriy S.

Cabrillo National Monument is really a gem hidden amongst a plethora of  attractions that San Diego is widely known for. Most people think of Legoland, Sea World, Coronado Hotel, San Diego Zoo, etc. when planning a trip here, but somehow Cabrillo is almost always ignored. I never knew this place until my parents decided to visit and I was looking for something interesting for them to do. Cabrillo is split up into two sections: the tidepools and the lighthouse. When I went, the tidepools weren't too interesting at all. Just little pools of water with a crab or two, but nothing else that is out of the ordinary. Maybe I just came at a bad time. They're great for the adventurous kids at heart who love climbing r...

Submitted by: Christine M.

If you come here on a clear day, you get breathtaking views of the water and San Diego. They have a mini museums to learn about its history and you can also enter the area where the lighthouse is located. The hike was nice for beginners, but not really made for avid hikers. The best part about it is the bench at the end of the hike where you can just chill and relax and take everything in- the sunshine, the breeze and reflection. Down the hill towards the beachside is a tidepool that can get pretty crowded. It's interesting to explore and get your feet wet- super family friendly. My husband and I ended the day sitting on top of the hidden bunker conversing for hours. With the view and the peaceful atmosphere...

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