Southern Cali has Everything You Need For The Perfect Family Vacay!

Traveling to SoCal? Read on for part 1 of our recap for family fun in southern California!

By Brittany Marsh, Publisher of Macaroni KID Gardner-Spring Hill-Paola July 3, 2023

My family recently had the opportunity to visit SoCal. The kids were wonderful traveling companions, and with a group of nine people, we were never bored. Our trip was primarily divided between San Diego and Anaheim, allowing us to explore both big cities (and the smaller ones in between). 

Some of the must-see attractions include the San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park, the USS Midway Museum and Birch Aquarium. For those who love the beach, Carlsbad State Beach, La Jolla Cove and Coronado Beach are all great options. If you're looking for some delicious food, I heard great things about Gaslamp Quarter or Little Italy. With so much to see and do, you're sure to have a wonderful time in the area! 

USS Midway Museum | 910 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Once aboard the USS Midway Museum, we were greeted immediately and told about their Junior Pilot Program. This allows children to remain engaged, with their own self-guided audio tour and a checklist of tasks to complete. Then we watched a short video (about 15 minutes) about the Battle of Midway, before heading to the various exhibits. There is so much to see and read about in there! The Midway audio tour is divided into three parts: Flight Deck, Hangar Deck, and Below Deck. Guests can choose the locations they want to visit and listen to, using the self-guided audio tour. The Flight Deck offers a glimpse into the pilots' experiences, flying over 20 aircraft and exploring Admiral's and Captain's Country and the Ready Rooms. The Hangar Deck brings enlisted sailors' stories to life, with tales of WWII aircraft, anchor drops, and bunk sleeping. Lastly, the Below Deck section includes stops at Sick Bay, Galley, Laundry, and Engine Room - giving guests a chance to learn about daily life aboard the ship. The tour takes 2-4 hours and promises to be a fascinating, immersive experience. For tickets, special events, and more information, visit the website, Facebook and/or Instagram page for the USS Midway Museum!

USS Midway Museum: Website | Facebook | Instagram

Birch Aquarium | 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, CA 92037

Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography features more than 60 habitats. We were able to enjoy the Little Blue Penguin feeding presentation at 10am, which is a great time to visit if you're making your own travel plans - as they are at their most active at that time. In addition to seeing fish, seahorses and sharks - they also have an exhibit inspired by comic books that showcases the "super powers" of various ocean species. Our family especially enjoyed watching the jellyfish and the Loggerhead Sea Turtle. There are also touch-tanks outside where you can see and feel sea anemones, hermit crabs, sea cucumbers, and more. I held a shark egg and my mom even touched the baby shark that came from that egg! Visit their website, Facebook and Instagram page to get your tickets, find out about their special events, and learn more about the organization! 

Birch Aquarium: Website | Facebook | Instagram

If you're looking for more family fun in SoCal - check out these local Macaroni KID pages below:

Click here to see part two of our vacation review! 

And to see more photos from our trip, follow us on Instagram!