I have one more post I would like to do about my day in San Diego; so far, you have seen my adventures boogy boarding & my time at Hotel Del Coronado, having thoughts about Marilyn Monroe. Now, I would like to share some pictures I took at Balboa Park, the amazing 1,200 acre cultural park in the heart of San Diego which is home to their world-famous zoos, gardens, museums & theatres. On a trolley ride that day, we were driven by a fun, colorful driver named Jim, whom I thought was pulling our leg that Balboa is even bigger than Central Park, but NOT SO! Central Park checks in at a mere 843 acres…I am continually reminded at how awesome CA is;-)
Building of this architectural eye-candy began in 1835, & thus is one of the oldest recreation parks in the entire USA. I felt like I all of a sudden was in Spain….then, walk a little further (or have the trolley drop you off!), & the spanish vibes suddenly become english as the replica of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre is absolutely un-canny, as well as their Theatre in The Round, an amphitheatre & their Spreckles Organ Pavillion, which hosts one of the largest pipe organs in the WORLD. (As a Tori Amos fan, side note to my Tori buds: I totally sang to myself as I passed by this, ‘Playing that organ must count for something’…& wouldn’t a performance of The Beekeeper songs sound great here?!).
The Casa del Prado Theatre, above, is one of my favorite buildings to see when I have been to Balboa. Built in 1915, it now hosts all sorts of local events & banquets. It sounds like you must be super lucky, & plan well in advance, if you ever would like to host a party of your own here…I am sure its well worth the wait, though!
Something I have added to my bucket list, is to see all the MUSEUMS! to be seen at Balboa! They have 16 among those 1200 acres (!), some of the top ones I want to get to are The Museum of Art, Living Artist, Museum of Man, The Automotive Museum & The Photography Center. I was lucky to get to The Museum of Natural History, which was loads of fun & very hands-on if you have little ones. Unlike the dinosaurs I got to see when I was little, that were all bones, they feature Dinos that are one side ‘life-like’ & you walk around to see their, er, bony side!;-)
One of their weirdest exhibits at the moment is…SKULLS! This is not for the faint of heart, but I know children will love it. In many glass cases on their 3rd floor, you will find over 200 skulls of many animals…from rhinos to rats to scorpions to giraffes to snakes…oh, my! The grossest one though was their newest skull addition: A gorilla’s head being cleaned right in front of you by maggots…hey, this is a NATURAL museum, no?!=P
They also have a beautiful Horse exhibit right now; featuring everything you want to know about these majestic creatures. You can look at otherworldly photography, watch films, get up close & personal with life-size horse mannequins (whats the difference between a human & a horse? Find out!) & below is my favorite piece I encountered; a gorgeous faberge egg that took over 10 years to complete that is a replica of the Balboa Carousel, & apparently really plays music! I know what I want for my christmas;-)
This has been one of my favorite posts to write! My next time I return to talking food & gluten-free with highlights from my evening with the CA Strawberries Commission!:-) xo
(*All photography copyrighted & by Along Comes Mary. Please contact her for permission BEFORE using in your own media. Thank you!)