Last week we escaped to La Jolla for a few days and it was so wonderful to spend some uninterrupted family time together. We met up with Brad’s parents and we stayed at La Valencia Hotel in downtown La Jolla. It was a great location for us because we didn’t have to get in the car very much. We spent most of our time wandering the cute downtown, eating, exploring the beach and playing in the pool.
La Valencia Hotel has such a vintage elegance to it, with it’s Mediterranean feel and view of the ocean. With our crew we need two rooms, and even that can sometimes be tight! But luckily the two adjoining rooms we got provided plenty of room for us and our kiddos. The room with two queen beds for the kids was really quite large! So nice for them to have their own space to chill out, play or watch a movie before bed. We attempted to have Emmy sleep in there with them, but that only lasted (half of) one night, lol. I guess we were hoping for too much!!
A few highlights from our trip…
Cody’s – This was our favorite breakfast spot! Right near the hotel and up the street from La Jolla Cove, they served up a fresh and hearty breakfast that everyone enjoyed. Kids particularly liked the pancakes (shocker) and my favorite was the veggie hash.
Girard Gourmet – We came across this cute little bakery when just wandering the town. Our kiddos saw the cookies and pastries in the window and it was a must stop. When I took Amelia to use the restroom I came across an article hanging on the wall….explaining all about how the owner, Francois Goedhuys, provides the bulk of the cafe’s produce from his farm in Julian, CA. They are all about fresh, locally and organically farmed produce and it shows!
Isola – An easy and yummy place for pizza, pasta and salads. We all enjoyed the Antipasto platter to start!
Cafe la Rue at Hotel Valencia – Many evenings we ended up here for dinner. After a long day of exploring and swimming the kiddos were tired and dinner at the hotel was just the easiest. And while the back patio with the view of the ocean was awesome, we ended up on the front patio because there was so much more room to accommodate our large crew! The kids meals were especially great, all the popular items like chicken tenders and mac n’ cheese were available, but it came in a bento box style with plenty of fruit and a mini salad. The meals can easily be shared between two kids.
Seals at La Jolla Cove – This was our favorite spot for morning or evening walks. The seals were so funny and entertaining to watch! I think they sleep during the midday, but we always found them to be active in the morning or evening. It was so fun to watch them play in the water and there were even some babies too!
Birch Aquarium – This was Amelia’s absolute favorite activity. It’s not a huge aquarium, but a nice size for a morning out. All Amelia wanted to see was a turtle, and boy did she see one! And Emmy’s reaction was priceless. She literally squealed with delight with everything she saw, and of course the kiddos were more then happy to show her around!
San Diego Zoo – This was our one big outing. Despite living in SoCal for three years now, this was our first trip to the zoo. The San Diego zoo really is as big and as impressive as you hear! We took the bus tour at the beginning of the day, and while I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it for actually seeing the animals, it was interesting to hear about the zoo background and their conservation efforts. After the tour we let the kiddos take over the map and direct us where to go! Our favorites were the monkeys and panda! The kids also loved the aerial tram that flies over the top!
La Jolla Shores – Not far from downtown is the little town of La Jolla Shores. It’s so dang cute and just what you’d think of for a California beach town…just a few shops and restaurants all on one street that lead right down to the beach. We spent the afternoon here after the aquarium. We had lunch at Galaxy Taco and ice cream at Scoops La Jolla. Both were delicious!