One of the most iconic places in San Diego, Balboa Park is a world renowned destination, and not just because it houses the San Diego World Famous Zoo. Aside from its historical buildings (including the Old Globe Theater and the Spanish Village), Balboa Park remains a locals retreat for its lush landscape and rolling hills. Ideal for a picnic or a hefty hike, afternoons spent lounging in the dispersed green grass or sunbathing just outside the fountain is a typical summertime treat.
Balboa Park is particularly a favorite for downtown residents, but when natives from outside Gaslamp come south for a night on the town, Balboa Park is a frequent rest stop. More than 1,4000 acres of unharmed commercial development, in a city streamlined toward the mainstream is an unheard of venture. From museums where locals are welcomed free the first Tuesday of every month (including the historical San Diego Natural History Museum, which has been around since 1874), annual festivals and shows (like ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’) and exquiste fare (including the Prado), it’s a well-forming habit. Few other cities have such a expansive area dedicated to the local growth, centered within the city’s main limits.
This weekend a host of festivities mark the finale of August, including the Celebrate Dance Festival, Balboa Park after Dark – Summer Nights and Balboa Park’s Top Dog.
[images from flickr’s moonjazz]