AAA Editor Notes
Balboa Park is at 1549 El Prado, roughly bounded by Sixth Ave., Upas St., 28th St. and Russ Blvd. This 1,200-acre recreation and cultural center boasts 17 museums; such performing arts venues as the Old Globe Theatre and the Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theater; numerous gardens; 65 miles of hiking and biking trails; and multiple athletic facilities, including a golf complex with views of downtown San Diego and Coronado.As the location of the Panama-California Exposition (1915-16) and the California Pacific International Exposition (1935-36), the lush grounds shelter many Spanish Colonial Revival buildings, which were built as temporary exhibit halls for the historic events. El Prado, a central promenade and boulevard in the western half of the park, is lined by several of the remaining structures—including the architecturally stunning California Building, now home to the San Diego Museum of Man. A city icon, it showcases a blue-and-gold dome with a starburst tile design and the 200-foot California Tower—Balboa Park's most prominent feature. The three-tier tower contains a 100-bell carillon that chimes every 15 minutes.Guided tours are available. Pet friendly (call for restrictions/fees.). Recreational activities are permitted. Picnicking is permitted. Food is available.