In any visit to a new city — or even a returning favorite — one of the first things on your to-do list is to check out the museums. Museums offer you new experiences and sensations as well as a taste of San Diego’s history and culture. They’re also the kind of attractions that anyone can enjoy: a single visitor, a couple, a family, a group of friends or students. The question is which museums should you visit in San Diego? If you’re short on time, here are a few of our favorites:
Have you ever imagined a life at sea? Then you’ll love the USS Midway Museum. This unique museum is set within one of the longest-serving aircraft carriers in the United States. You can walk through the the deck and below, a veritable city to the 225,000 sailors who served on this craft. There are over 60 exhibits within as well as self-guided audio tours with audio from Midway sailors. Have kids with you or just aircraft enthusiasts? Check out retired aircrafts as well as the flight simulators where you can envision launching an aircraft off yourself!
Balboa Park is one of the most famous, expansive attractions in San Diego, and right in the middle of Balboa Park is the San Diego Museum of Natural History, or the NAT as locals call it. This is the perfect museum to take the kids. Here they can see casts of dinosaur skeletons, go on a scavenger hunt for fossils, or express themselves on the massive chalkboard. This museum will not only teach your kids about natural history but about protecting the environment today, so they may leave both intellectually enriched and a little more environmentally conscious.
The Fleet Science Center is great for both kids and adult science buffs alike. Small kids can learn about movement and shapes with the ball wall or fire station or can enjoy a science themed movie at the IMAX dome. Older kids can learn how to generate electricity or experience a virtual reality trek through space. If you’re over 21, the Fleet Night of Science offers all the same fun exhibits that the science center usually offers with a delicious cocktail as you explore.
This La Jolla local aquarium is beloved throughout San Diego and the surrounding area. It’s the product of research done by scientists at Scripps Institute of Oceanography. Here you’ll find 60 preserved habitats for fish and other ocean dwelling animals and organisms. You can watch scuba divers interact with the displays or enjoy some of the hands-on exhibits yourself. Make sure you check out the tidal pools tours or whale watching while you’re there!
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