The Best Beach to Visit with Toddlers in San Diego

by | Nov 10, 2023 | California | 0 comments

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San Diego is a wonderful destination to visit year round. There are so many things to see and do when visiting with young children that it can be hard to choose what to do. Whenever we are visiting a city near the ocean, we always make time to visit the beach for a day. While we were in San Diego, we wanted to visit a beach that was great for toddlers and we found that La Jolla Shores Beach was the perfect place to go with toddlers.

What to look for when choosing a beach:

One of the most important things we look for when choosing a beach is how accessible it is. I enjoy finding a beach with easy parking that is not too far from the beach. We like short walks to the beach with our toddlers. 

I also like to find a beach that has restrooms. This is very helpful to have with a potty training toddler or babies. I know lots of beaches have restrooms but it is always a good idea to check before you arrive.

Another thing that I like to look for is if the beach has lifeguards. This is not a necessity but it is nice to have lifeguards around.

When going to beaches with toddlers, I also like to look for a beach that does not have large waves. I know that tides can change day by day but some beaches tend to be calmer than others. It is also important that the beach is relatively clean. I enjoy clean beaches where my toddlers can enjoy playing in the sand.

Best Toddler Beach in San Deigo:

We think that the best beach to visit in San Diego with toddlers is La Jolla Shores Beach. It is not far from the downtown area of San Deigo and there are lots of great amenities at this beach. The beach itself is about one mile long and located in the community of La Jolla. While there are many reasons to visit this beach, these are some of the things we loved about this beach.    

1. Parking

The parking at this beach is amazing! There is a large parking lot right next to the beach. The walk to the sand from the parking lot is less than two minutes. This is ideal when visiting with toddlers who want to play at the beach as soon as you park the car. I also liked that we didn’t have to walk far at the end of our beach day with two tired toddlers. When researching this beach, I did hear that this parking lot can fill up quickly on the weekend or in the afternoon. I would recommend arriving earlier in the day on weekends and before noon during the week. We went during the week around 11:00am and had no problem finding a parking spot. 

2. The Sand

This beach has an abundance of soft, clean sand. This was very important to us when choosing a beach since both our kids love playing in sand. The beach does have a bit of seaweed that washes up on shore but there was plenty of sandy areas further up from the ocean for the kids to play. 

3. Lifeguard on Duty

There is a lifeguard on duty at this beach which is always a nice thing to have when visiting a beach. They are on duty from 9:00am til dusk every day of the week. The main lifeguard tower is a great place to base yourself if you are visiting the beach with children. 

4. The Waves are Calm

This beach typically has some of the calmest waves year round. The summer months are usually the most calm but we visited in the fall and the water was still very calm. Calm water is very important when choosing a beach for our family since both our kids love the water and swimming. 

5. There is a playground nearby

This is something that I typically don’t require when looking at beaches but it was a nice break from the sand and water for the kids. We spent a lot of time at the beach so it was nice having Kellogg Park nearby for the kids to play at. There is a nice grassy area, a few picnic tables, and a playground for kids to play on. 

6. Restrooms and Showers

When visiting beaches with toddlers, it is always very convenient to have restrooms close by. La Jolla Shores beach has both restrooms and showers located close to the parking lot and Kellogg playground. This was very nice especially when traveling with a toddler who is potty training and if you are traveling with a baby. 

7. Kid Friendly Boardwalk

There is a wonderful boardwalk at this beach which is also stroller friendly. This is nice if you want to go for a walk with young kids as the boardwalk is not very long. It can get busy later in the day so go early if you want less people. 

8. It is Near Restaurants

La Jolla Shores Beach is close to lots of shops and restaurants which makes it super convenient to grab a bit to eat on your way to the beach. I would highly recommend a stop at the Cheese Shop in La Jolla. They serve great sandwiches and we grabbed some on our way to the beach. I would recommend the turkey, jack cheese and avocado sandwich. It was delicious!   

These are the many reasons why we loved La Jolla Shores Beach. It is the perfect toddler and kid friendly beach to visit when in the San Diego area. All of the amenities were excellent and the beach itself was great. 


What are your favorite kid friendly beaches to visit in the San Diego area?