We’re looking forward to hitting the sunny West Coast later this month to attend the AOTA 93rd Annual Conference & Expo in San Diego. We’ll be busy bees meeting and greeting with attendees, working on expanding the ranks of our occupational therapy instructor team, so we’ll probably miss out (sniffle) on all the wild and wonderful stuff this gorgeous city has to offer. Here’s a list of some of the oddball, funky, gorgeous and oh-so-California places to hit in your free time.
La Jolla Caves
About 14 miles from the Convention Center you can find seven sea caves perched within a 75-million-year-old sandstone sea cliff. While there, rent a bike or kayak or even go snorkeling for a truly exhilarating excursion!
Haunted San Diego
There are several services that will take you on a guided tour of San Diego’s most haunted spots. It’s also a great way to get the low-down on some of the fascinating history of the city. Try “Haunted San Diego” or “Old Towns Most Haunted“.
This 16-block national historic district that offers visitors a variety of restaurants and shops, as well as an eyeful of Victorian architecture. There’s plenty of great shopping where you can pick up gifts for yourself and for the family, and a metric tonne of amazing eateries like the Gaslamp Strip Club (the steak not the tease!) or The Hopping Pig. Or try a historical tour and fill your brain with the history of the district.
Explore where the wonders of the ocean come alive! The mission of Birch Aquarium is to provide ocean science education, to interpret Scripps Institution of Oceanography research, and to promote ocean conservation. Daily shows include tide pool feeding and kelp tank feeding shows.
Stroll through Balboa Park and marvel at its beautiful Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. The park has a great variety of offerings, including 15 museums, free daily park tours, public organ concerts, and spectacular gardens.
The Big Bay
San Diego Bay has 34 miles of scenic waterfront dotted with restaurants, shops, hotels, attractions, parks and marinas that reside in seven distinct areas. Each lends unique ingredients to the overall flavor and character of the waterfront on the Big Bay.
Old Point Loma Lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument
This historic site, just a 25 minute drive from the Convention Center, provides an awesome view of San Diego, the harbor and the ocean all from one spot. Very peaceful and quiet escape from the city, streets and people.
World’s Largest Lemon
What trip to San Diego would be complete without seeing the largest lemon in the world, located in Lemon Grove, California? A mere 15 minute drive from the Convention Center will have you standing beside a marvel of the modern world. I know what I’m adding to my Bucket List!
There is so much more to see and do in San Diego that this blog post could go on for pages and pages. Tripadvisor is a great repository with honest reviews if you’re looking for things to do or see while in town for the AOTA Conference. If you have any places to add that are “Must see”, let us know!