By Kim Harris
Managing Editor 

Beaches, museums and family fun await those willing to make the drive

 

Last updated 6/16/2018 at 2:57pm

Kim Harris

An artist blows giant bubbles for a crowd gathered near the pier in Pacific Beach.

Tons of fun can be found just a short drive away, if you know where to look.

The beach is a given on any particular day, especially if you are looking for some fun in the sun with minimal expense. The California coast is lined with beaches and they never disappoint when it comes to inexpensive entertainment. Oceanside pier lies a mere 45 minute drive south from Temecula, but for those looking to venture a little further, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach and even Encinitas's world famous Moonlight Beach all offer something different.

Visitors to Oceanside Beach can stroll along the pier and watch fishermen in action as they reel in the catch of the day. Mission Beach-goers can play on the boardwalk at Belmont Park if they get tired of their toes in the sand. Those who work their way to Pacific Beach will be entertained by a variety of performers who can be found along the boardwalk there with their unique brand of entertainment. Moonlight Beach is home to the annual Wavecrest Woody Car Meet each year in September and visitors can expect an abundance of surfers, sand and good old-fashioned fun.


All the beaches offer a plethora of dining and shopping options. On Saturdays, check out Encinitas' weekly Seaside Bazaar and in Oceanside the Lucky Street Vintage Market never disappoints.

Drive into San Diego and take a hike at Balboa Park, you won't be sorry you did. Full of amazing vegetation, scenery and even museums, Balboa Park is just an hour and 15 minutes south of Temecula right off Interstate 15. A trip to this location is one that is filled with enjoyment and wonder. From the stunning Japanese Friendship Garden to the fascinating architecture and museums galore, a visit to Balboa Park is fun from beginning to end. The best part, most of the park is free to wander through. If you go be sure to visit the Spanish Village Art Center and take the time to appreciate the colorful artwork displayed there.

If you are really feeling adventurous and have the money to spare, visit the San Diego Zoo located inside Balboa Park. With an overabundance of animals from all parts of the world, old and young alike delight in a visit to this San Diego landmark.

Expanding your cultural horizons is easy in Old Town San Diego. From amazing shops to mouthwatering morsels, Old Town can keep visitors busy for hours on end. A variety of museums tell the story of the area's rich history from the time of conception in 1769 as California's first settlement with only a mission and a fort to its current state of more than 1.4 million residents.


Living history activities take place every Wednesday and Saturday in Old Town State Historic Park. Visitors can speak with staff and volunteers as they demonstrate activities that would have taken place in the 1800s. Demonstrations include quilting, blacksmithing, carpentry, games and much more.

While these are just some of the main attractions the area has to offer, there are millions more, all within driving distance. All you have to do is a quick Google search and you will find all kinds of exciting things to do, all right here in our own backyard.

Kim Harris can be reached by email at [email protected]

Kim Harris

A trip to the Oceanside Pier is a great way to spend the day with family and photography buff friends.

 

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