Adam F and 1 other parent have been here

Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego, California

1800 Cabrillo Memorial Dr, San Diego, California

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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.

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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...

Submitted by: Rolando P.

The last time I was here was when I was 10 years old, vacationing with my parents.   Now that I am a parent, I took my daughter.   She really showed interest, which surprised me. Excellent views and a must see when vacationing in San Diego. Even saw an airc...

Submitted by: Sarah H.

Beautiful.  Came here on Memorial Day Weekend and it added the oomph seeing all the veterans and families remembering their loved ones who fought for the country.  They had a formal ceremony with the guards in the morning.  The parking was horrific, no doubt but we parallel parked and walked for about 5-10 minutes.  We tried to avoid the paid parking by parking near the cemetery, but they charge PER PERSON if you're just walking past the gate, while they charge PER CAR otherwise.  We talked to the ranger and he was kind enough to charge us at the car rate.  The ticket lasted for 7 days, so it was cool that we got to come back the next week at no charge. After we observed the memorial, we headed over to the m...

Submitted by: Patricia F.

went back today with my family & visited the lighthouse. I took lots of pics and uploaded to ...

Submitted by: Sheree P.

Cabrillo National Park is about 30 minutes from DTSD.  I have never visited this place the years I've lived in SD (my preference has always been Balboa Park).  So Thanksgiving family trip, I decided to throw this in the mix because I hear the Loma Lighthouse is amazingly beautiful. It is off the Point Loma Naval camp (I actually drove into the camp ground thinking that this was it and had to be escorted out...oops) you must drive pass the camp and go all the way to the end of the road.  I'm not very good at reading the signs, clearly.   $5 bucks entrance fee is a steal for stunning views, dramatic cliffs and the quaint lighthouse which is beacon of the monument site.  It has hiking trails that you can go on,...

Submitted by: Sarah D.

There are only a few places that I would describe as one of the most breathtaking moments I have ever experienced and captured on film and this is certainly one of them.  (If you know me then you know that I love animals and you never ever see me without a camera.)I could sit there all day every day for the rest of my life.  I have made calendars for myself of the beautiful scenery and maybe one o f these days I'll put a link up so you can see them! Besides being a great portrait for a photographer it's also very family friendly -a fun time combined with a little history - a great combination for a wonderful day!   They have a visitor's center which I always like to stop in before we do anything. It helps ed...

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