15 Best Things To Do In La Jolla, California In 2022
La Jolla is a beautiful coastal city in Southern California and a perfect getaway for a weekend filled with romantic sunsets, surfing, shopping, and dining.
Take a guided kayak tour of La Jolla Underwater Park to see marine life, snorkel, or dive. Enjoy romantic sunset strolls at Ellen Browning Scripps Park, which features scenic trails and spectacular beaches, including the famous La Cove. Jolla. Here is the list of the best things to do in La Jolla, California.
1. La Jolla Underwater Park
The spectacular La Jolla Underwater Park promises a wonderful adventure and is one of La Jolla’s top attractions. Home to natural marine life preservation and aquatic recreation area, it stretches over 6,000 acres of shoreline and shallow tides between Ellen Browning Scripps Park and La Jolla Shores.
This incredible ecological reserve is home to two artificial reefs, two underwater canyons, and a vast kelp forest, creating a pristine and protected marine habitat that is home to various ocean flora and fauna.
Two sunken artificial reefs attract marine life just offshore and make perfect conditions for swimming and snorkeling in the crystal clear waters teeming with beautiful sea creatures.
Visitors can participate in a wonderful snorkeling adventure beyond the reefs in the 600-foot-deep La Jolla Canyon, where migrating whales are often seen. La Jolla Underwater Park is a protected area, and fishing is prohibited. However, other water activities such as kayaking, swimming, snorkeling, and diving are popular pastimes on the reserve.
2. Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Located on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the Birch Aquarium at Scripps is a public aquarium and exploration center of the world-renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of San Diego.
To educate the public about the importance of ocean science and conservation, the Aquarium houses 60 habitats of marine animals, fish, and invertebrates worldwide.
Major exhibits at the Aquarium include the ‘Hall of Fish,’ which features a myriad of fish species; ‘ElasmoBeach,’ a 13,000-gallon tank that shows the home of elasmobranchs (sharks and rays) and other marine life that lives near the coast; and ‘Tidal-Pool Plaza,’ which features three spring tide pools teeming with marine life.
Birch Aquarium promotes education and conservation of the marine environment through various creative exhibits, programs, and activities for all ages throughout the year. This is a great place to visit if you are looking for the best things to do in La Jolla.
Address: 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, California 92037
3. The La Jolla Historical Society
The La Jolla Historical Society is the premier cultural and historical organization for the La Jolla region. It operates as a nonprofit public benefit corporation that strives to engage the San Diego region with its diverse history and cultural heritage.
The society operates three historic buildings throughout the Scripps-Gill Cultural Zone, including the restored 1904 Wisteria Cottage, which features museum-style gallery space for changing cultural exhibits throughout the year.
The archival collections are housed in a renovated 1916 carriage house, while public research space is offered in a 1909 cottage. Guests can view exhibits related to the region’s natural, social, and cultural history, including displays of local artifacts, photographs, and heritage documents.
Public events throughout the year include a Concours d’Elegance car show and a La Jolla Secret Garden Tour event.
Address: 7846 Eads Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037
4. The Beach Gallery
La Playa Gallery is one of La Jolla Shores’ premier art galleries, originally open to the public in 2013. The charming gallery focuses on the works of local and regional artists, striving to showcase works and artists not shown in other galleries in the area.
An eclectic selection of media is featured, including works in painting, sculpture, ceramics, jewelry, and mixed media. A wide variety of themed exhibitions are on display throughout the year, many organized by guest curators and designed to highlight the works of multiple regional artists.
The gallery also features an artist-in-residence program, art education courses, and an art installment purchase program.
Address: 2226 De La Playa Avenue, La Jolla, CA 92037
5. Harry’s Coffee Shop
A La Jolla icon since 1960, Harry’s Coffee Shop is a family-owned restaurant now run by the second generation and likely serving the second generation of loyal customers accustomed to sipping their cup of java in the familiar, comfortable atmosphere of this American classic. Dinner.
This restaurant has shiny vinyl booths, long counters, and walls covered with sports memorabilia and Norman Rockwell prints.
Their most famous dish is a buttermilk waffle stuffed with bacon, a thick slice of ham, and a poached egg, slathered with their signature homemade hollandaise sauce. This meal will easily keep you going past lunch.
Breakfast is served all day with fresh-squeezed coffee or juice, or try an old-fashioned smoothie or float to mix things up. The menu is huge; you can spend hours drooling over it before deciding what to buy, so plan to return.
Address: 7545 Girard Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037
6. Fingerprint Gallery
Thumbprint Gallery is an elegant La Jolla art gallery showcasing the works of emerging and mid-career artists, with a unique focus on pop surrealism and street art. It works related to pop culture and pops nostalgia.
The gallery was founded in 2009 and presented monthly exhibitions throughout the year, highlighting pieces by regional and international artists. Past exhibitions have included works by Zard Apuya, Nonie Cruzado, Victorio Villa, and Strange Dreams Surreal Art Collective.
Pop-up exhibits and art shows are also hosted by the gallery at locations throughout La Jolla throughout the year. The gallery is open to the public from Friday to Sunday during the evening hours.
Address: 920 Kline Street, La Jolla, CA 92037
7. The Promiscuous Fork
The Promiscuous Fork is a cool, friendly, fun-filled food joint and, to top it off, one of San Diego’s favorite places. Following in the footsteps of its popular catering business, The Promiscuous Fork is now placing its time-honed dishes in picturesque La Jolla digs.
With a high communal table and a split inside/out bar, the restaurant has a cozy and welcoming atmosphere that appeals to everyone from families to fashionistas.
Their wonderfully simple menu promises original bites, ranging from Surf & Turf grilled cheese with homemade crab Louie to cheddar-topped salmon tacos and bacon-wrapped BBQ shrimp with a side of baconnaise.
Wash down with a selection of craft beers from award-winning local breweries. This is a great place to try if you’re looking for fun date ideas in La Jolla.
Address: 6984 La Jolla Blvd., La Jolla, California 92037
Lajollacooks4u offers a variety of culinary experiences for every occasion, with packages ranging from farm-to-table and gourmet cooking classes to food tours and at-home cooking lessons.
Founded in 2007 by certified culinary expert and chef Jodi Abel, Gourmet Classes are held at her home in La Jolla, where she imparts her expert culinary knowledge to private groups in a fun and delicious way.
Individuals and groups won’t miss out on this unique culinary experience using only local and sustainable ingredients.
Gourmet food, dining experiences, and cooking demonstrations are available, as well as exciting San Diego food tours and culinary weekends with foodies and foodie friends.
Whisknladle is an acclaimed La Jolla restaurant that was opened to the public in 2008 by Executive Chef Ryan Johnston. The restaurant strives to create elevated comfort food with a back-to-basics bent, incorporating unique ingredients and bold flavors into familiar favorites.
Lunch and dinner service is available seven days a week, highlighting dishes such as grilled jidori chicken, Moroccan vegetable tagine, chestnut noodles, and roasted venison.
The seven-day-a-week brunch also highlights comfort food like spicy fried chicken with sausage gravy, adobo chicken chilaquiles, and plum and French fig toast.
Address: 1044 Wall St, La Jolla, CA 92037
10. Post-Mexican Artisan Kitchen & Bar
Colorful, bright, and unassuming, with gorgeous large murals and outdoor seating, Puesto Mexican Artisan Kitchen and Bar attracts local families and La Jolla hipsters as they are known to serve the best Mexican street food out there. From Jalisco.
The service is fast, but the quality and freshness are unlike anywhere else. The menu includes a variety of Guisados (grilled foods), including roast beef, fish, shrimp, chicken al pastor, and vegetarian Mexican dishes such as zucchini flower, potatoes with soy chorizo, and corn truffle.
The original Mexico City tacos are made with fresh handmade tortillas and served with excellent margaritas. Puesto’s other location in San Diego is downtown at The Headquarters.
Address: 1026 Wall St, La Jolla, CA 92037
11. Ellen Browning Scripps Park
Ellen Browning Scripps Park is one of San Diego’s favorite attractions for getting out and about, with ample spaces for picnics and scenic paths along the waterfront for strolling, jogging, and enjoying the view.
One of San Diego’s most popular spots, the park offers easy access to some of the city’s best beaches, including La Jolla Cove and the Children’s Pool.
One of the most beautiful beaches in San Diego, La Jolla Cove, is part of La Jolla Underwater Park, whose white-sand shorelines and pristine, sheltered waters are ideal for swimming snorkeling, snorkeling, and kayaking.
From starfish to sea lions, the ocean floor at La Jolla Cove abounds with many types of marine life as long as you’re on the ground.
12. La Jolla Kayaking
Based in La Jolla and operating since 1996, La Jolla Kayak offers guided tours in and around La Jolla’s spectacular coastline and shorelines, including the world-renowned La Jolla Underwater Park Marine Reserve.
La Jolla Kayak offers a variety of tours. Snorkel in the crystal-clear waters of La Jolla Underwater Park, explore the Seven Caves on a kayak trip or take in stunning ocean views while biking along San Diego’s historic coastline.
Guided tours are led by certified and experienced instructors where guest safety is the top priority. If you prefer to explore on your own, paddle boards, kayaks, snorkel gear, and boogie boards can be rented to enjoy on your own time.
13. La Jolla Water Sports Snorkeling Tour
Swim and snorkel with some of San Diego’s spectacular marine life, from sea lions and starfish to manta rays and moray eels, on a snorkeling tour with La Jolla Water Sports.
One of San Diego’s premier water sports stores, they offer a variety of water activities, with snorkeling tours led by certified instructors through some of the best spots on the coast.
Snorkel in the crystal clear waters of La Jolla Underwater Park, surrounded by a myriad of marine life in the protected waters, enjoy a sea scooter snorkel trip in the kelp forests, or head into deeper waters to dive with sharks. All equipment is provided for snorkeling tours, and tour groups are kept small for safety.
14. The Country House
Located on a sunny corner in downtown La Jolla, The Cottage La Jolla is a friendly, laid-back neighborhood restaurant with a reputation for delicious food, excellent service, and a warm atmosphere.
The turn-of-the-century cottage features a beautiful brick patio flooded with natural light where diners can enjoy a breakfast of farm-fresh eggs, oatmeal pancakes, healthy granola, yogurt, or syrupy Belgian waffles.
Dinner is just as delicious, with a bistro-style menu featuring classic Southern California dishes with all-American flavors. Don’t leave without trying some delicious cakes, desserts, and freshly baked bread at the Cottage Bakery.
Address: 7702 Fay Avenue, La Jolla, California 92037
15. The Music and Arts Library of the Athenaeum
The Athenaeum Music and Arts Library is one of the United States’ remaining membership libraries, originally opened in 1899 as the La Jolla Library Association.
The nonprofit membership library is one of the San Diego area’s premier cultural institutions, housed within three historic buildings in the city’s La Jolla region.
Visitors can explore the library free of charge Tuesday through Saturday during the morning and evening hours and access an extensive collection of music and art, including one of Southern California’s premier collections of artists’ books.
A permanent collection of works of art showcases more than 200 paintings and sculptures, highlighting regional and national artists.
Frequently Asked Questions: Best Things To Do In La Jolla
What is so special about La Jolla?
Consistently voted one of the top beach destinations in the world, La Jolla offers a wide range of accommodations from luxurious hotels to casual coastal retreats, museums and art galleries, one-of-a-kind boutiques, great restaurants, and a slew of outdoor activities.
Is La Jolla or Coronado better?
La Jolla Cove ranked ninth and Coronado Beach 15th on Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards, which compiles its rankings based on reviews and ratings from Tripadvisor travelers in 2021.
Is La Jolla worth visiting?
There is no better resource for things to do and places to stay in her seaside community. Even if you’re not staying in a La Jolla hotel, it’s still worth visiting our seaside jewel for the day or even a half-day.
Where is the secret swing in La Jolla?
Cross the street and keep walking the trail, staying on the uphill side of the hill. Look for a narrow dirt walkway and follow it down about a quarter-mile on a slight downhill until you see a group of trees where you’ll find the secret swing.
Does La Jolla have a boardwalk?
La Jolla Coast Walk cuts through a quiet residential neighborhood with expansive views of the Pacific. Kicking off near Hospital Point, the boardwalk stretches along seaside bluffs, through grassy areas, past Children’s Pool Beach, Ellen Browning Scripps Park, and La Jolla Cove, ending near Park Row.
- Things To Do In La Jolla For Free
- Things To Do In La Jolla For Families
- What To Do In La Jolla For A Day
- Things To Do In La Jolla At Night
- Best Things To Do In San Diego
- Things To Do In La Jolla In December
- La Jolla Restaurants
15 Best Things To Do In La Jolla, California In 2022