The South Bay is a great place for kids, especially if you’re not a fan of spending a lot of money and engaging in overstimulating amusement parks. Here in the South Bay, kid pleasures harken back to simpler times and more low-key entertainment. From local farms, recreation parks, and the great outdoors, take your pick of my top 15 things to do, but remember: there are a lot more than just this. For history enthusiasts, shopping, the gangster tour, Chicano activism, foodie fun and community awareness of border issues, you can additionally search this website for a many more unique things to do with your kids.
Purely For Kids
So just after I said you can avoid amusement parks and overstimulating activities in the South Bay, now I’m telling you where your kids can do precisely that. I know. A little double-speak, but hey. Let’s face it. We all want to know where you can catch a little overstimulating fun every now and then. The South Bay has a few places you might like to take your kids if they want loud, squealing fun:
Jump Around at 1675 Brandywine Avenue, Chula Vista, this place has a trampoline park, a skywalk and lots of candy.
Pump It Up at 751 Design Ct. Ste A, Chula Vista, is where the kids will enjoy mammoth inflatable slides.
Skyzone at 851 Showroom Place #100, Chula Vista, is another crazy trampoline park that keep the kids active and returning home zonked.
The Great Outdoors
San Diego Beach Rides: Located in the sleepy Tijuana River Valley, kids can get horse rides throughout the valley and over to the beach. They have a petting zoo that includes an alpaca. Recently, they also opened Pony World about 1 mile away where kids can ride ponies for $5 per 2 rounds.
Chula Vista Kayak: Meet Harry Orgovan at the Chula Vista Harbor and you’ll kayak tour through the serene bay learning about all the bird & fish species as well as how this refuge came to exist.
Imperial Beach Fishing Pier: Teach your child how to fish, have a snack at the Tin Fish restaurant or hang out at the beach for a swim or to create sandcastles. This is a great place to take kids almost any time of the year.
Farms & Educational Centers
Wild Willow Farm: Located in the Tijuana River Valley, kids can enjoy all sorts of camps and classes geared toward sustainable agriculture and farming.
Suzie’s Farm: Right next door to Wild Willow Farm, Suzie’s has farm tours every Saturday and many more activities for kids throughout the year.
Tijuana River Estuary Visitor’s Center: If your child enjoys bird watching or anything that has to do with indigenous plants and animals of the region, this Visitor’s Center offers a large number of educational programs for kids. Check their website and get on their newsletter for updated information.
Living Coast Discovery Center: The aquarium here displays all sorts of ocean water species and you can also pet the stingrays. There are many programs here for kids to enjoy.
Parks & Recreation Centers
Surf Camp: The YMCA has a large property at Imperial Beach that looks more like a re-make of Gillian’s Island. A shop, cabins for sleeping, and most importantly for Southern California — the ability to surf. Book early. This is a popular camp for kids.
Bayshore Bikeway: Take out your bicycles and head along this bike path. You’ll pass the Living Coast Discovery Center, the Salt Works and experience a lot of the indigenous flora and fauna of our region. This is an up-and-coming attraction in the South Bay, so still somewhat undiscovered. That means you won’t be bumping into bike-to-bike crowds along this way, which makes it all the more worth it.
Otay Recreation Center: This lesser known center has ping-pong tables, pool tables, a large basketball court and a work out room. Catering to kids, there’s lots to do here.
Montevalle Park: Another great park open to the public, there’s a skateboard park, soccer & tennis courts, some walking trails, a park with play equipment, ping-pong tables and pool tables. This park has it all and kids are safe to roam around and try a little bit of everything.