La Jolla Cove, Scripps Park, and the surrounding area is a great place for families to explore together. It surprises me when I talk with native of San Diegans who have never been to this area of La Jolla! It is, in my opinion, is one of the most beautiful places on Earth!
La Jolla Cove is actually an Ecological Reserve known for it’s beauty and as a popular destination for scuba divers, snorkelers, kayakers, and strong swimmers. The cliffs to the east of The Cove have some GREAT hiking trails, which are easy enough to use with a jogging stroller. The paved path to the west of The Cove takes you on one of the most scenic walks above the Pacific Ocean.
Above The Cove is Ellen Browning Scripps Park, which is a very popular place to picnic. There is no playground here, but plenty of grass to run around. There’s also a sprawling paved path you can take from The Cove, and along Coast Boulevard which is a really scenic walk. From this path you may see dolphins, seals, sea lions, and if you go at the right time of year (generally mid January through early March) you may even see the migration of the gray whales.
If you follow the path away from The Cove, south of Scripps Park, you’ll come to some stairs which take you to what’s known as Shell Beach. At low tide you may be able to see some tide pools. This is not my favorite tide pooling area, but if you happen to be there at low tide you might want to check it out. Be careful of the tide, as it can be very strong when it comes to shore.
Follow the path further down Coast Blvd., look out toward the ocean, and you’ll see Seal Rock just south of Shell Beach. Out on Seal Rock you’ll likely see sea lions and seals on the rocks. A large wave may come and knock them into the ocean, and you’ll see them hobble back up on the rocks again. It’s a lot of fun to watch them and take pictures.
Keep walking past the cliffs above Seal Rock, and you’ll come to what’s known as The Children’s Pool. Here you’ll find more seals and sea lions on the beach. This is not a destination to have children go on the beach, but it’s a great place for kids to view the beach and mammals from a distance. Have fun!