Travel Plans? Tips for Homeschooling on the Road

You’ve decided to take your vacation late and are embarking on a trip to Seaworld with the kids in tow. The only problem is, school is in session, and though you homeschool, you’re not sure how well it will work while traveling and on vacation. However, you and your family really need to get away for a week, so you’re going. Luckily, it’s not that hard to homeschool when traveling. Read on below for some tips to help you have fun and keep your kids learning at the same time. 

Join a Virtual School 

There are many virtual schools out there today that offer online home school courses. In most cases, the schedules are flexible, but you still get the structure you need. With a virtual school, you can study anywhere that you have the internet or a hot spot, meaning that you can go to Seaworld during the day and have the kids study when they get home that afternoon or vice versa if you prefer. 

Pack Light

In other words, you need to limit the amount of homeschool work you take with you. Limit what school items you take based on what will fit in the kid’s backpack. You’ll also want to take their computers, so they can do classes and worksheets, but remember you’re on vacation so you don’t want to overdo it or feel overwhelmed. 

Remember to Be Flexible 

You’re on vacation, so flexibility is key. You don’t want to have a rigid homeschool schedule while traveling. Kids are less likely to be focused and your structure will soon go out the window. To have a good time and prevent meltdowns, be flexible while you’re on vacation. 

Study the Places You’re Traveling To

You’re traveling so why not take advantage of that to teach the children. If you’re heading to New Hampshire, and you’re driving, why not take advantage of that by studying each state you pass through. Your kids will love it and it won’t feel like they’re studying at all if it’s done the right way. 

Enjoy the Local Food 

Your kids will never be able to learn more hands-on than when you’re on vacation. Take them to the local places to sample the food that locals eat while on vacation. If you want, take them to eat at these local restaurants or markets, then quiz them on the food they ate and what it has to do with that particular area or culture. You’ll have fun and the kids will be learning at the same time. 

Remember, School Doesn’t Have to Take Long 

While brick and mortar schools are typically in class seven to eight hours a day, the same doesn’t hold true for homeschooling. You can have work done in one to three hours, according to what you’re studying and the attention level of the children. Remember here, you’re on vacation, so you’re going to be lax. Take the time to teach them about exercise, history at the local museum, or budgeting and buying groceries at the local store. All of this is teaching them, so if you do it, you’re doing a good job and allowing them to enjoy their vacation at the same time. 

These are just a few tips for continuing to homeschool while you’re on vacation. Remember, homeschooling isn’t like brick and mortar school. You have more possibilities and a much more flexible schedule. The teaching is up to you and you want them to enjoy learning. These tips will help your kids stay in school, but have fun at the same time. 

 

Exploring La Jolla As Your Potential New Home

You’ve been to La Jolla a few times before, and each time was a great experience. Whether you’ve vacationed there with your kids, traveled for corporate events, or dropped by to visit friends and family, the diverse culture, great food, and plethora of activities in this sunny beach town hold a special place in your heart. You’ve enjoyed yourself so much that the idea of making La Jolla your new home seems like the right thing to do. 

Though the more than 30,000 residents in La Jolla would agree that it’s a fantastic place to live and raise a family, relocating is not a decision you make lightly. While your past visits were great, what you experienced as a tourist will differ once you become a resident. Before leaping, you must research and explore the city as a potential resident. Continue reading for advice on how to determine if  La Jolla has everything you need to live happily.

Talk to People You Know

If you want to know what life is like for a La Jolla resident? Why not get it straight from the horse’s mouth? If you have friends, family members, or colleagues who live in the city, talk to them for a firsthand account of everyday life. Since they know you and have your best interests at heart, they will give their honest opinion. From the cost of living and job availability to the quality of schools and neighborhood violence, their advice can help you make a more informed decision. 

City Guides and Neighborhood Databases

The internet can be a reliable source for researching La Jolla as a potential place to move. Several reputable sites offer city guides and neighborhood data that give a more in-depth description of everyday living. Whether you’re interested in moving to downtown La Jolla or a quaint southern town like Bird Rock, you can learn about the population, median age, average income, crime rates, school districts, real estate prices, attractions, activities, and more. 

Resident Reviews, Online Communities, and Forums

Official government sites, city guides, and neighborhood databases are all useful sources to learn more about making La Jolla your new home. Still, there’s nothing like hearing it from the locals. Residents are known for giving their honest opinion and feedback on everything from neighborhoods and the cost of living to city officials and service providers. 

Whether you’re looking for a pediatric dentist in San Diego, the best neighborhood to raise a family, or a genuine opinion on the downside of living in a beach town, city review sites, online communities, and local forums could get you the answers you need. 

Live Like a Local

If you have the time, money, and resources to do so, the best way to determine if La Jolla should be your new home is to live like a local for a few days. Plan a trip to the neighborhood you’re most interested in relocating to. Instead of staying in a hotel, look for an Airbnb or vacation rental as this will give you the best perspective on home life. 

You already know what it’s like to be a tourist, so the main objective during your time in La Jolla is to indulge in local activities. Shop at a local market and prepare your meals instead of dining out, visit the farmer’s market, drive around the neighborhoods, check out surrounding businesses for employment or personal needs (shopping centers, gyms, etc.), and attend community events. You can also use this as an opportunity to fill out applications, schedule interviews or tours with schools, and meet with a realtor. 

The warm weather, sunny skies, beaches, attractions, food, and culture, are enough to make any tourist consider making La Jolla their permanent residence. Before making a life-changing decision, take the time to explore and research the city as a potential resident to ensure you’re making the best choice for you and your family. 

small business sign

How San Diego Private Equity Can Help Your Local Business Reach Its Full Potential

By leveraging San Diego private equity investments, local businesses are increasingly finding solutions to their expansion needs. In addition to much-needed capital, a San Diego private equity firm can also provide invaluable expertise in helping you identify the right strategy and take full advantage of available opportunities. When planning and setting goals, partnering with a firm can help make sure you don’t limit your potential. Here are just a few ways that investors help local businesses achieve their growth objectives.

ADDING A NEW PRODUCT OR SERVICE

Adding a new product or service is a common strategy for expanding a business. While it may sound simple, it can often be quite a challenge. For example, your kitchen and bath remodeling company may want to expand its services to include whole-home remodeling and additions. San Diego private equity investors can provide localized expertise from identifying high-level goals to outlining an action plan step-by-step. They also help you through the whole process, from determining what products or services your target market wants to help you figure out potential price points to even navigating any legal requirements or certifications. A private equity firm in San Diego will have the necessary regional specific knowledge and experience, whether you’re only focused on coastal La Jolla, or you want to expand further around San Diego county.

EXPANDING INTO A NEW TERRITORY

One of the most common ways to grow a business is by adding a new territory. The pool construction sector is just one example, with an increasing number of pool contractors aiming to expand their reach into new areas. San Diego private equity firms can give businesses a competitive advantage and help identify the best areas for their target market in nearby Imperial, Orange, and even Los Angeles counties; as well as surrounding states in the region such as Nevada, Arizona, and Utah.

San Diego private equity investors can also help you manage that process of targeting a new market. For example, let’s say that you currently provide landscaping services to residential customers in La Jolla. As part of your plans to grow your business, you might consider targeting commercial property owners or possibly expand residential services up into North County. The best investors will share experience, help you conduct targeted research, and create a strategic plan to tap into the top new markets and grow your existing customer base.

MERGING OR ACQUIRING ANOTHER BUSINESS

Consolidation is another way that San Diego’s private equity firms can help a local business grow. When it comes to mergers and acquisitions around San Diego, the first ones that come to mind are larger industries such as pharmaceutical and technology companies. Yet highly fragmented sectors like yoga studios and dental offices can also benefit. By combining forces with a San Diego private equity firm, it helps more easily expand their reach and gain market share. Sharing technology, as well as administrative and operational loads and costs, allows these small businesses and local boutiques to focus on aspects like developing strategy, improving customer experience and delivering a better product or service.

CLOSING THOUGHTS

As you can see from the examples above, San Diego private equity firms are much more than just a source of funding.  They constantly monitor and analyze businesses across a diverse range of industries, and then offer insights and knowledge to help ensure their client’s business succeeds. This experience is even more valuable to business owners trying to find their way through an economic recession like the one caused by COVID-19. However, even in the midst of the pandemic, some businesses still thrived. Obviously, it depended on the industry since travel businesses and restaurants were devastated. For others in sectors like tech, grocery, veterinary, and many hobbies, many companies hired more people, opened new locations, and even made more profits than they were making before. Yet growing a business during financial hardship or a recession can be tricky. Some may find themselves navigating uncharted waters, unable to rely on their usual methods and strategies. 

Many small businesses are looking for alternative strategies to grow their companies over the long term. Partnering with investors can give small businesses a competitive advantage. They bring a lot more to the table than capital alone. They offer a unique skill set with expertise on everything from understanding the new consumer behaviors to the evolving automation and digitization that is reshaping the market place.  San Diego private equity offers more value than most people realize and can make a huge difference to a business interested in growth and expansion. Having a well-developed strategy is key. Even more important is your ability to execute on that strategy. Working with San Diego private equity can help ensure you are taking the right steps on your path to success.

 

When To Outsource Marketing

When to Outsource Marketing and When to Do It In-House

 

Many tech solutions allow you to launch your startup in San Diego without hiring a lot of employees. Since using artificial intelligence (AI), technical writing apps, and website building software will increase employee productivity rates, you will require fewer people to do the work. 

 

However, we are not at a moment in history where tech solutions can replace employees entirely. Most tools simply make great employees even better. They can perform at a higher level and get more done. 

 

AI, for example, is not yet at a point where it can replace the ingenuity of a marketing team. And, of course, your company won’t flourish without an excellent marketing strategy. It’s not enough to offer a unique product or service to the consumer to win a large share of the market. You also have to educate consumers about how your innovation will benefit them. Naturally, the best way to convince anyone of anything is to first win their trust. 

 

When you’re just starting, one burning question you’ll have is whether you should outsource your marketing or build your in-house marketing team. 

 

Let’s carefully weigh the options.

 

When to Outsource Your Marketing 

 

The primary reason to outsource your marketing is to fill a talent gap in your organization.

 

This talent gap could exist for several reasons:

 

  1. You may have many people with administrative or technical skills, but few with marketing knowledge and experience. 
  2. You may only have a small team of overworked marketers… and you need a larger crew for your latest marketing campaign.
  3. You may not have all the expertise you need in your team. If, for instance, you don’t have an SEO expert, then you’ll need to hire one in your city. So if your business is in San Diego, hire an SEO company in San Diego to fill in the missing skill set. 

 

At the end of the day, the executive suite only wants results. The Chief Executive Officer wants a high return on investments. The Chief Financial Officer wants to rescue the budget with an injection of positive cash flow. And the Chief Operating Officer wants the financial resources to improve performance metrics. 

 

The bottom line: If your startup doesn’t have enough people or talent, outsource the work.  

 

When to Build Your Marketing Team 

 

If your company has more than enough time and money to hire the right people to build the marketing team, then that might be the way to go.

 

The secret to building a great team is to have an effective hierarchical structure in place to get the right people in the right seats.

 

Here is an example of what your hierarchical organization might look like:

 

Under the director or vice president of marketing, there might be an editorial director, a director of acquisition, and a director of monetization.  

 

  1. The Editorial Team: The blog editor, video editor, social media manager, and community manager will work for the editorial director. This team will create content. Members might include copywriters to develop marketing messages, content writers to create blog posts, and mass media communication specialists to produce engaging podcasts and videos. 
  2. The Acquisitions Team: The traffic manager, analytics manager, and designer will work for the director of acquisition. This team will develop leads and improve conversions. Members might include salespeople and customer service personnel. 
  3. The Monetization Team: The email marketing manager and optimization manager will work for the director of monetization. This team will transform leads into subscribers and customers. Team members might include email-writing specialists and data analysts. 

 

These three teams will work independently while coordinating with each other. 

 

No Wrong Decision

 

Deciding whether to outsource or build your in-house marketing team depends on your business. There is no right or wrong decision: just the most appropriate one. So decide based on whether outsourcing or in-house marketing provides you with the fastest most sustainable results. But–there’s also a third option: you could outsource your marketing for a quick start while you recruit the best people for your in-house marketing team.

eBikes in La Jolla – Ride1UP

Finding an affordable electronic bike for your lifestyle

Biking has always been a popular form of exercise as well as a means of transportation. In fact, the very first bike was invented in 1817 by Karl von Drais. Fast forward around 200 years and Karl would not even recognize some of the bikes on the streets today. This is partially because a new type of bike has hit the scene known as an eBike. 

So what exactly is an eBike? An eBike has a battery powered motor that allows for assisted pedaling. These bikes also contain a throttle for when the rider needs that extra burst of speed. eBikes have become popular for many reasons. One reason is that eBikes offer a more environmentally friendly, sustainable alternative to motor vehicles. Commuting to work on an eBike versus driving in a car greatly reduces your personal carbon footprint. In addition, eBikes are much more affordable than cars. 

At Ride1UP, our eBikes start at an affordable price point of $995. We are pretty sure you’d be hard pressed to find a car anywhere near that price! Read on to learn more about finding an affordable electronic bike.

700 Series

Find an Affordable Electric Bike 

The biggest turn off for a lot of people when it comes to sustainable transportation is the price tag. Hybrid and electric cars are very expensive to the general population of drivers. Even eBikes can have a high price tag. In fact, many companies sell electric bikes for as high as $8,000! This price tag scares away the general population from entering the sustainable transportation market. At Ride1UP, we want the eBike product to be something that is available for everyone without having to take a giant chunk out of your savings. We believe that a high-quality eBike can be priced in the range of $1,000-$1800. All of our products fall into this range. We believe that getting an eBike should not have to put you in debt. The best part about our bikes is that, just because the price is low, it doesn’t mean quality is sacrificed. At Ride1UP, we have one of the most efficient supply chains, allowing us to reduce costs while still designing high quality products. Looking for further savings? Commit to replacing at least 2 driving trips per month with your electric bike and we will reward you with $40 off! If you are still hesitant about the price point, think of it this way: How much money in gasoline will you be saving each month by using your eBike instead of your car? The gas savings alone will quickly pay for the eBike. 

 

Quality Matters When It Comes to Efficient Technology 

A massive cornerstone of creating a sustainable and efficient world is reducing waste. Indeed, it seems that current technology only lasts a few years before it needs upgrading. This constant need to update causes a massive amount of waste to build up. That is why when you are looking for an affordable electronic bike, you need one designed to last. At Ride1UP, our bikes are durable and designed to last for the long run. Here are some common things to look for to ensure the quality is reliable: 

  • Lightweight alloy 
  • Durable metal 
  • Faux-leather seat 
  • Stainless steel spokes 

Get the Mile Range You Need Saving Money And Saving The Environment 

If you have made the decision to replace your car as your primary means of transportation with an eBike, you need to make sure you purchase a bike that can handle the miles you are putting on it. According to NPR, the average American’s commute is a little under 27 minutes. But remember, this includes sitting in traffic. With  your eBike, you will be able to glide right past traffic–in some cases getting to your office even quicker than you would with driving. All of our bikes are in the range of being able to travel 25-55 miles without needing a charge. For most people, this is well within the mileage range of their office or any errands that they are running. 

 

Saving Money And Saving The Environment 

A current focus of many people in our country is to “go green.” Whether that means recycling, buying sustainable clothing, or cutting back on driving, there are many ways to help the environment. Cars produce a lot of carbon dioxide which is a greenhouse gas and is harmful to our atmosphere. According to the EPA, the average car emits 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide each year. Here’s how you can help: Make a promise that you will invest in an eBike, and use it at least twice a week to commute to and from work instead of driving your car. Ideally, you will use it much more than this, but two times a week is a great place to start. This is one easy way to reduce your carbon footprint, starting today. As you save money on gas, know that you are also doing your part to save the environment. 

 

Choose the Best Electric Bike Company 

eBikes are the method of transportation for the future. Not only are they fun, but they are environmentally friendly as well. No matter the reason you decide to get an electronic bike, you need to purchase it from the right company. Here at Ride1Up, we provide industry-leading electric bikes at affordable prices. Also, we back up our top of the line electronic bikes with unbeatable customer service. If you are looking for an affordable electronic bike, come visit our website today — we’d love to help find the right model for you. 

 

5 Tech Solutions that Can Help Your San Diego Startup

5 Tech Solutions that Can Help Your San Diego Startup

Managing an emerging business in San Diego needs hard work and persistence. Even after you employ the much-needed workforce, you must be in a position to embrace technology and resources to meet the business demands. Thanks to the latest business technological progressions, many complex tasks have been automated.

 

Technology-based businesses, software, and tools allow you to run new companies without adding new employees. Using tech-based apps and ventures enables you to automate your business activities to boost productivity and save revenue.

 

With so many tech-based business solutions available in the market, choosing the best one out of the list can sometimes be tricky. The following are some of the best and top-rated software platforms that can help you grow your emerging business.

 

Artificial Intelligence Software

 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the use of technology–such as a computer system–to simulate human intelligence processes. The processes include decision making, learning, self-control, reasoning, self-correction, and even transactions.

 

The use of AI technology has been used to make many business intelligence decisions in many sectors. This technology has facilitated the development of other business operation software since it can distinguish between good and bad decisions. These types of applications can be relevant to any sort of business, from a DNA company up near Torrey Pines or a banking services business in UTC. 

 

For example, AI technology-based software can be applied in real-time chats to answer clients’ questions in a given online platform. Furthermore, AI-based apps can track information and transaction history, sense machine productions, and deliver results for decision-making.

 

Blockchain Technology

 

Bitcoin may have started its crypto revolution, but its technology software is the blockchain, which in general has a more significant effect on the upcoming business developments. One fantastic feature of the blockchain is that it is decentralized. Meaning, it can keep any data in an accessible public database without being hacked, corrupted, altered, or compromised.

 

Blockchain is among the most advancing latest technologies, and people have developed many software and tools to embrace it. For those businesses looking for secure and reliable transaction techniques, blockchain is the way to go. Based on this technology, there are several apps and software available for those willing to decentralize most of the business open source transaction solutions.

 

Technical writing software

 

If you want your business to grow, you must think of the quickest ways to stand out in the middle of your competitors. Adopting a perfect writing service or software is a top-rated marketing strategy that you shouldn’t ignore.

 

Sometimes, you may run out of marketing strategies, or they can go stale. Using technical writer software or auxiliary tools, you can be ahead of competitors and attract more customers.

 

Technical writing software can be a useful tool for your business in many ways. Here are a few benefits of using professional writing software.

  • It delivers professional formatting and expert presentation of information.
  • It provides quality, well documented, and precise data that suits the marketing needs of your business.
  • Effective content; It ensures that your page content is helpful to your prospective customers.
  • It Helps in keywords optimization. So you don’t need to employ search engine strategists to work on your content.
  • It boosts conversion rate hence reducing marketing expenses.

Website Building Software

 

WordPress is the most popular web hosting software that houses over half of the world’s blogs and websites. So, it is an excellent option if you want an effective and adaptable online platform with options for future improvements.

 

There are thousands of themes available for the choice to give your website a unique look. There are many other website hosting platforms that you can try if you think WordPress isn’t good enough. You can also start an online store using an app such as Shopify to sell your products or services.

 

Payment and Transaction Platforms

 

For your business to flourish online, you need to have smart ways of transactions. There are several online platforms available for quick and reliable money transfer operations.

For instance, PayPal is the most used transaction platform worldwide. You can easily and quickly accept payments made to your business from credit card holders or mobile money providers. The platform takes care of everything, from compatibility to security at a minimal fee.

 

Several other software platforms like Stripe are available that you can install on your online shop to accept money from various payment methods. Operating an emerging business can be difficult. It will help if you choose the right tech-based business strategies and software to ensure that your operations are effective and productive. Fortunately, technology has provided the best software and procedures, as discussed above, to meet the needs.

 

5 Things to Consider When Purchasing Real Estate in La Jolla

5 Things to Consider When Purchasing Real Estate in La Jolla

 

So you think you’re cut out for The Jewel of America’s Finest City, you’re ready to stake your spot in La Jolla, California.  Well before you purchase real estate in La Jolla, take these five things into consideration.  

 

Location – Where Will You Live

All of La Jolla is not like the other.  La Jolla is made up of four different areas all with their own unique personality.  

 

The central and main area of La Jolla is known as “The Village” or downtown La Jolla.  Here you will find shops, restaurants, hotels, and La Jolla Cove.  The Village is a great blend of living at the beach and a walkable entertainment sector.  Do beware though during tourist season The Village can get quite busy, coastal walkways and parking fill up quickly.  

 

South La Jolla as its name suggests is just south of The Village and just north of an area called Bird Rock.  South La Jolla is made up of quiet streets lined with family houses and spotted ocean lookouts.  Though you may need to take a car or golf cart to nearby restaurants and attractions it is typically a little less frequented by tourists. 

 

North of The Village you will find the La Jolla Shores and UTC.  The Shores consists of family houses and a beautiful sprawling beach.  The Shores even has its own center of restaurants and cafes. UTC on the other hand is where you will find large apartment buildings, stores, malls, and workspaces.  It is the work and shopping center of La Jolla.  

 

Loans – How Are You Going to Pay For it

It’s safe to guess you’re going to need to purchase your new real estate property and it is not going to be handed to you.  It’s also likely, unless you just had a major business exit, that you are going to be financing it with a loan.  Consider contacting local loan advisors in the area.  They will be knowledgeable about the area and better able to assist you.  If this is your first home purchase consider an FHA loan and if you are one of our honorable service members make sure you take advantage of VA loans in San Diego.  

 

Housing Style – What Abode are You Looking For

The living unit you’re looking for will largely dictate your search.  If you want a smaller condo with little maintenance required you will likely look in The Village.  If you would like a stand alone house with a unique character, you will likely look in South La Jolla.  If you desire new construction without having to tear down an existing structure, you will likely be looking in the UTC area.  

 

Real Estate Value – You Get What You Pay For

The price for real estate in La Jolla is higher than that of the national average.  However, it is important to remember, a higher real estate investment upfront in a desirable area typically leads to higher equity growth, in the country’s most valuable zip codes you always want to own the worst house on the block. That way, you will see your property value rise quicker in La Jolla than you will in less desirable parts of the country.  

 

Long Term – Plan and Think a Few Years Down the Line

It’s safe to say, once you move into La Jolla you’re not going to want to leave.  So make sure you take your time and plan well enough down the line that you are content for years to come.  Make sure your property aligns with your work and family plans.  

 

There it is, the five things you need to consider when purchasing real estate in La Jolla, California.  Now I challenge you to go out and claim your spot on the coast.  I wish you smooth sailing, La Jollan.  

How Parents Can Prepare for When Life Returns to Normal

How Parents Can Prepare for When Life Returns to Normal

 

Schools, bars, and many other places have been closed due to the recent pandemic that has hit. San Diego has come together to help each other during these trying times, and we are close to living life as normal again. As things ease up, we must adjust away from the new normal we’ve experienced. 

 

While people are excited to get life back to the way it was, there are certain things to consider. Here are some tips on how parents can prepare for when life returns to normal:

1. Prioritize Health

 

Just because things are easing up doesn’t mean that you should relax on safety procedures. There may be a second wave of the pandemic. Plus, cleanliness and health are things that should remain a top priority with Coronavirus or not. You should make a point to provide your children with hand sanitizer. You should also remind them to wash their hands regularly and cough into their elbows if they need to cough. This should also be a concern when finding a new La Jolla daycare center. Make sure the staff abide by these and other cleanliness routines and have the kids in their care do the same.

2. Finding Work

 

Many people lost their jobs because of the pandemic. The first thing you need to do is find work again. First, get your resume together. Next, send it out to essential companies that will not shut down due to coronavirus. Also, be sure to prepare for interviews by getting your professional clothes ready and practicing popular interview questions.

3. Getting Child Care

 

When you go back to work, you won’t be able to stay at home with your children like you used to. If school is no longer in session, you are going to find child care. Searching for a new San Diego daycare center is essential but can be difficult, though. This is especially true if the recent pandemic has hurt your pocketbook. Luckily, there is help. TOOTRiS is one of the best resources for California Child Care Assistance programs. You can get help with child care, so you can go back to work and start making money again.

4. Continue to Social Distance

 

As a parent, your family’s health is your top priority. You need to ensure that your family is safe by continuing to social distance appropriately, especially when it comes to having fun on the beach or in the park. You should not go out to large, public gatherings with the family. You should also be careful about play dates and hanging out with other people. Be extremely selective about who you interact with. You should also avoid touching each other or going out when feeling sick.

5. Develop a Routine

 

One thing the pandemic did was shake up everybody’s sense of normalcy. Make a point to develop a new routine to maintain a certain level of consistency and order in your home. Yes, things are going to change again. However, a regular routine can actually help make the changes easier for everyone in your home to accept. It will also help your children learn how to adjust to change in the best way possible for when change happens again in the future.

 

Things seem to be changing drastically in short periods of time here in San Diego. As a parent, you not only need to prepare for these changes yourself but also for your family. Luckily, when you plan appropriately, the transition back to normal life can be quite seamless. Simply focus on health first then get everybody back to a new routine. If you need help, there are resources available to you.

 

This Coastal Hike (With Epic Views) Is One of La Jolla’s Best-Kept Secrets

Though there are several La Jolla hikes that we love, one of the area’s best-kept secrets is tucked away down a small side street atop Mt. Soledad. Also referred to as La Jolla Natural Park, La Jolla Heights Open Space is a small 42-acre preserve that was set aside to preserve its sensitive biological resources and habitats. Within the preserve, you’ll find a hidden trail that hugs the coast and leads to sweeping panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, downtown San Diego, and even Mexico on a clear day. It’s a short hike that makes for a fun and easy weekend outing; and at a little over a mile out and back, offers incredible rewards for little work!

Directions to the Trailhead

Heading south on Torrey Pines Road, towards The Village, turn left onto Exchange Place. You can park to the right on Virginia Way or Olivet Street. Now on foot, keep left onto Soledad Avenue when Exchange forks off. Go right from Soledad Ave onto Al Bahr Drive. Continue on Al Bahr under the bridge; the trail begins at the farthest end of the street loop, marked by a brown trailhead sign.

la jolla hikes

The Trail

The short trail winds its way through thick vegetation and a good deal of San Diego’s native chaparral. Keep an eye out for wildlife, especially if you’re hiking closer to sunset; people have spotted all kinds of creatures, including gray foxes, bobcats, brush rabbits, lizards, gopher snakes, and scrub jays.

After passing through some tall grass, the hike opens up to an expansive desert hillside covered in chaparral. There are several clearings up the hill that provide incredible photo opportunities; the views of La Jolla just get better with each step. There are a few forks in the path, but as long as you continue on an uphill branch, you’ll eventually reach the summit.

On super-clear days, you’ll even be treated to views of La Jolla Shores, Torrey Pines State Reserve, and Catalina Island! Once you’ve taken in the views, head back to Encelia Drive, past the car gate, and continue south to reach the intersection of Encelia and Brodiaea Way. Turn right onto Brodiaea and make your way down the hill; turn right again on Romero Drive, which will become Country Club Drive.

When you reach Exchange Place, you can continue down to Torrey Pines Road or turn right onto Soledad Avenue to make your way back to the trailhead at Al Bahr.

The roundtrip hike, up the hill and down the streets back to the trailhead, is approximately 1.3 miles and takes around 50 minutes if you stop for a few photos and sit on the bench at the top to admire the view. There are few trees to provide shade, so bring sunglasses, sunscreen, and plenty of water on warmer days. Elevation gain is roughly 655 feet.

Why We Love It

It’s rustic. La Jolla Heights Open Space/Natural Park provides one of the only more rustic and naturally beautiful hikes in the area. Although it’s maintained by the City of San Diego, much of the flora and fauna grows wild, providing hikers with a rare glimpse into the rougher, unmanicured parts of La Jolla.

The views are one-of-a-kind.

No other hike in La Jolla provides 180-degree views like this; and the cute bench to take it all in from is just the cherry on top.

It’s short and sweet.

Clocking in at just over a mile, the hike is long enough to be a workout but short enough to not take you all day to complete. Less work and more rewards? We’ll take that combo any day!

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[Yelp]

Before You Go

  • Dogs are allowed, but must be leashed.
  • The ascent is steep and most of the path is dirt, so wear your hiking boots or tennis shoes!
  • There are “No Trespassing” signs at the top of the hike; they refer to the reservoir and not to the hiking trail
  • Bring plenty of water; though it’s a short hike, there is little shade and can get hot during the summer

After your hike, you’ll find that you are close to many restaurants in the La Jolla Shores area. Head to Galaxy Taco or Shorehouse Kitchen for a more laid back lunch, or travel a bit further to Caroline’s Seaside Cafe, atop Torrey Pines, for more awesome views and an outdoor patio.

There are so many unique La Jolla hikes and trails! Which one is your favorite?

6 Essential Coffee Shops in La Jolla

6 Must-Try Coffee Shops in La Jolla

If you reside or work in La Jolla, you run around here with a to do list of important business and errands. Taking a break with a latte is time you need to rejuvenate…and caffeine to help get back to your bustling schedule! And hey, if you’re on a vacation, taking a breather from sightseeing mode to relax and have some energy-boosting goodness is just as vital.

Brick & Bell

Stroll up to this spot and feel the bustle before you even see it. This small cafe is always packed with loyal customers, reassuring you it’s going to be amazing. With the feel of a classic European cafe, you’ll hear regulars rattle off an order of a latte and a pastry. Everything is good, but the scones are the most famous item; more than 100,000 here are sold each year!

Lunch is served starting around 11 am. If you have time to sit and really revel in your food, grab a table at the outdoor seating out in front below the cafe’s steps. Take in the brick and vine-covered overhang as you bite into your decadent cinnamon roll and sip your rich coffee! Plus, they now have two locations – the original in downtown La Jolla, and a new location at La Jolla Shores!

The Living Room La Jolla

The Living Room is a coffeehouse, lunch place, bakery, and both a wine and a traditional bar. As the name implies, this spot makes you feel right at home, except here you get to enjoy food and drinks (and coffee) without lifting a finger. It even looks out over the water!

If you’re looking for a coffee shop with pastries as well as plethora of other desserts, this spot is prime. You’ll see chocolate eclairs, macaroons and amazing cakes like carrot, gluten-free chocolate and three layer mousse. The menu has a wide variety of options, from vegan bagels and veggie-lover omelettes to meat-and-avocado packed sandwiches and ravioli. There’s something extra special about their breakfast sandwiches, especially the Breakfast Club Croissant and Ultimate Bagel Sandwich. The combination of energy-rich carbohydrate and powerful protein really powers you up for the day.

Pannikin La Jolla

If La Jolla has been hit with morning fog, head straight down Girard Avenue to Pannikin. Its fireplace makes it the ultimate cozy place to hit when chilly and its outdoor patio the perfect spot the remaining 95% of the year! This coffee shop is in the design district of La Jolla. If you’re looking for new home decor or just dropped your little ones off at the nearby elementary school, it’s definitely convenient.

Pannikin is known for both food and drinks. People come back again and again for their Greek eggs, homemade granola (served with all types of fruit goodness) and pastries, which range from incredibly fluffy muffins to fresh bagels. Beverage wise, whether you order a dirty chai, iced mocha or regular coffee, you can’t go wrong. If you have allergies or simply prefer to avoid dairy, they offer both soy and almond milk too. As well as several roasts of coffee, they have a fantastic selection of teas, which is a pleasant change from most coffee shops.

Harry’s

This is a classic, old school diner spot from the 1960s. This family-owned cafe has been deemed one of the best retro coffee spots in the nation, and it’s easy to see why. It has a vibe of nostalgia and community. You’ll look to the walls and see memorabilia, like newspaper clippings from when the San Diego Chargers made it into the Super Bowl (which feels like decades ago now!) It’s friendly for humans, dogs, and cars alike: pups are allowed – the restaurant even provides water bowls for them – and there’s a free one-hour parking lot for your car. Drink-wise, basic coffee is always great. If you’re looking to get a little more adventurous, we recommend the decadent caramel-salted latte or heart-warming cafe mocha.

Bird Rock Coffee Roasters

Bird Rock Coffee Roasters is a La Jolla gem! Their flagship location on La Jolla Blvd. is comfortable, spacious, and a perfect spot to curl up and read a book or catch up on work. Known for their ties with international coffee roasters and their dedication to serving green coffee, Bird Rock Coffee Roasters have been upping the coffee game since they opened in 2002. Their drip coffee is delicious, and their variety of international blends is spot on – from their Bird Rock Blend to a traditional French Roast and an organic roast straight from Colombia, you can’t go wrong with any of their roasted coffees. They have two other locations in Little Italy and on Morena Blvd.

Parakeet Café

A relative newcomer to La Jolla, Parakeet Café is our favorite spot for cute Instagram photos and great coffee! With a delicious selection of different toasts (avocado, salmon, and hummus to name a few), oatmeal, and matcha waffles, this is definitely a great place to grab a bite to eat, too. They have a nice selection of iced and hot coffees, including Nitro cold brew (on tap!), flavored lattes, and espresso. They make it easy to personalize your drink, which is a nice plus when you’re looking for something a little different. They’re located at 927 Silverado Street.

Visit Legoland Near La Jolla, CA

A Little Lego History

Denmark revolutionized the world when, in 1958, it invented the building block that took us all by storm…the LEGO! Years later, this brick inspired one of San Diego’s top attractions, LEGOLAND. Located in nearby Carlsbad, this family-friendly location has you leave in the mood to build something. Though kids and adults alike can find fun here, the park is heavily geared towards children, and you’ll see the main demographic is kids under 10 years of age.

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What to Expect

LEGOLAND is full of miniature worlds that have been carefully constructed by top LEGO building masters. As you explore the sites like miniland USA, you’ll feel tall and mighty next to 7 miniaturized areas of the United States that Legoland has created. Look down upon Las Vegas and stand at the same height as New York City!

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Next, head to the Imagination Zone for a curious, thought-provoking environment. This is where kids can unleash their creative minds and make LEGO creations of their very own.

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Add some thrills to your day by hopping on one of LEGOLAND’s rides. Each of the rides have different height requirements, so make sure to look at the requirement before going on. This save potential grief for a youngster who waits in the entire line, only to find out upon boarding that he or she cannot get on!

dd On Adventures

LEGOLAND has a full water park and aquarium world connected to it! For an additional cost, you can add tickets to these venues on to your general admission ticket.

The LEGOLAND Water Park has play areas for little ones, sweet slides, loop-filled rides and an awesome wave pool! It is the perfect way to help your kids cool off after hot hours spent walking Legoland.

The SEA LIFE Aquarium is a great way to combine the greatness LEGOLAND and the pleasures of nearby SeaWorld in one visit! Although much smaller than the vast aquatic park, here your kids can also experiences jellyfish, stingrays, various types of fish and sharks.

How to Prepare

The earlier you buy tickets, the better. The amount you pay at the park, the day of your visit, will be much higher than if you purchase online a week before. It’s also good to note that this park is incredibly popular and gets especially busy on weekends on holidays. If it’s at all possible, try to come Monday through Friday. If you do attend one of these busier times, be especially conscious of time management. The most popular rides have lines that grow longer throughout the day, so you’ll want to hit those first.

Outside food and drink is not technically permitted within the park, however, we will note no security typically inspects incoming bags or backpacks. The wide variety of food within the park makes sure there’s a little something for everyone. You can find snacks that are more upscale than the typical theme park, such as apple fries, and restaurants serve options that cater to many dietary needs. You can find meals that are vegetarian, dairy free, egg free, gluten free and nut free!

Holiday Events

LEGOLAND loves to honor the holidays with special events and treats. In October, visit the park the few weekends before Halloween for Brick-or-Treat. The park is closed from 5 – 9 pm to make it exclusive for this event where they give out candy, healthy treats and, best of all, LEGOs!

During the winter holiday season, come check out Winter Nights & Snow Play. At this event, you can play in snow for free, tube down winter slides and, for an extra cost, go ice skating!

In Conclusion

For families with young children, LEGOLAND is an ideal full-day destination. Children are guaranteed tired for bedtime and, if you live in the area, can come year round with purchase of an annual pass!

Visit Pacific Beach Neighborhood

Pacific Beach Neighborhood

Head slightly south of La Jolla and find yourself in Pacific Beach, the neighborhood with the movie-like, casual beach lifestyle. With a reputation for surfing, yoga, beachside bars and hopping nightlife, it’s no wonder it’s the first stop for so many 21st birthday bashes.

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The wonderful thing about Pacific Beach is that if you’re seeking a high energy, glass-clinking experience, it’s easy to find. If you’re looking for a calmer experience that involves great cafes, meditation and long walks on the beach, it’s easy to take yourself from the heyday of the main street and relax.

The Main Downtown

The always-happening street of this area is Garnet Avenue. On it you’ll find dozens of bars, restaurants, dance clubs, boutique shops and more. On the weekend and Taco Tuesdays, this area is particularly famous for bars that are open until 2 am. There’s a wide variety of bar types and vibes. Some are smaller and have games like foosball, while you’re more likely to find yourself dancing to colorful lights at Typhoon’s or playing human-sized Connect 4 with a margarita in hand at Cabo Cantina.

On weekends, brunch is a much beloved tradition here. Many venues offer hand-crafted Bloody Marys and incredibly bottomless mimosa deals. (It has been suggested that the people who most love these brunches are those who were heavily enjoying the bar scene here the night before!) Shopping-wise, this area tends to be quite underrated. Pacific Beach is so popular one assumes most clothing is expensive and oriented towards visiting tourists.

However, you can find great quality clothes, sunglasses, accessories and more for reasonable prices. The most popular form of shopping is through the second chance stores. Some examples of these shops include Buffalo Exchange, Thrift Trader and Goodwill. You’ll find incredible deals on great clothes. Sometimes you can find top designer options that even still have the tags on! If that’s not a good deal…we don’t know what is!

Bird Rock: The Blurred Line of La Jolla & Pacific Beach

Northern Pacific Beach is the more calm, more laid back area of PB. Stroll this area to find decadent San Diego-made coffee, take great pilates classes and, if you stroll far enough North, find yourself arriving back in La Jolla! The coastline at this end of Pacific Beach is also more calm.

You’re more likely to see people laying on towels engrossed in books than a group of fraternity men from one of the local schools hosting a volleyball tournament.

Top Activities

Besides nightlife and shopping, just about all of the most popular activities, of course, relate to the beach. We highly recommend:

Renting a Bicycle

If you’re visiting, bicycling is the best way to get around because it eliminates the trickiness of parking on a sunny weekend!

Surfing or Boogie Boarding

You can rent or buy equipment at many local venues and the water here is prime for both.

Running

Along the boardwalk, along the sand…there are many great runs. Check out the top 4 trails our friends over at Visit PB recommend at their blog: Best 4 Trails to Run in PB.

Trying New Food. Specifically? Sushi!

Being right by the water, this neighborhood is a mecca for sushi restaurants. They’re all good, but our favorite and recommendation is Zen 5 Sushi.

Practicing Yoga

Whether you’ve been practicing for years or are just interested in loosening up, PB allows yogis of all levels to practice and increase their depth. The library offers yoga for free on Tuesdays, the infamous cliffs at Law Street host free sessions every weekend morning and private venues like Corepower Yoga attract many with the popular “hot power infused” classes. Learn more about yoga in PB at Visit PB’s Yoga Page.

Nearby & More Information

Slightly south of this area is the laid-back, local vibing Mission Beach & Bay. You can incorporate it into your Pacific Beach itinerary by reading more about this area at our Mission Beach & Bay Neighborhood Page.

And, hey, want to learn more about the specific beach area of Pacific Beach, like where to find parking? Head to our Beaches Directory and check out our Pacific Beach Page.