Family Fun Adventure: Birch Aquarium at Scripps (La Jolla, CA)

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Our Family Fun Adventure today is coming to you from La Jolla, CA at Birch Aquarium at Scripps. We have been planning to visit this aquarium for some time and finally fit in a trip down south to see it

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This is a very small aquarium and I would only plan on a couple hours here. We took advantage of Free Museums Bank of America days on this trip. There is free admission for BOA cardholders on the first weekend or first certain weekend days of the month. See their website here for a museum near you: http://museums.bankofamerica.com/mobile and call ahead to the attraction to find out exactly which day is going to be free. I had to call a couple times over a few days to actually get to talk to a live person…but its definitely worth it knowing in advance, especially if you are planning a trip from afar

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The Aquarium has the usual tanks of fish and sharks and some interactive areas for the kiddies. Lifesaver!

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The outdoor interactive area was awesome fun for our 4 year old and he spent the majority of the time playing at the dam building boat water table. He got soaked (maybe bring a change of clothes) and was weeping when we had to leave. There are also some people powered things to try, like a bicycle fountain and a arm pull wave machine

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Even though there isn’t suppose to be any food inside I did see some folks enjoying snacks in this area. There are covered tables, a cool breeze and gorgeous ocean views

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They had some of the fanciest seahorses I had ever seen!

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The tide pool area was another hit for the little guy. It wasn’t touching the little creatures, rather the simulated wave he called ‘the woosh’ that he was in love with. Since we didn’t have time to apply for cards for our littles we ended up paying about $25.00 for two kids under 13 and since we were only there for 3 hours parking was free. Overall I thought it was a fun small place to visit and taking advantage of the free BOA day made it a worthwhile visit. I was glad we combined this visit with a trip the next day to the Living Desert Zoo in Palm Desert, CA as it would not have filled the day/trip on its own. If you are in the area passing through and need a educational stop for the kiddies, its a fun way to burn a couple hours. Age wise I think 3 or 4 years- to maybe 10-11 years would be the target audience for this place. It was very clean and well maintained and I definitely think its worth a couple of hours exploring

Family Fun Adventure: Hungry Gulch Hike (Lake Isabella, CA)

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Hey Lovelies, today’s Family Fun Adventure comes to you from the Kern River area near Lake Isabella, CA. We had the pleasure of joining friends for an over night camping trip by the river We enjoying delicious fresh caught trout and the kids had fun getting wet and really grubby!

On pack up morning our family headed down the road for coffee and had hopes of finding a short kid-friendly trail nearby. Luckily we ran into a helpful ranger that pointed us just down the road to the Hungry Gulch Campground and informed us of a couple short trails within the park

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The campground was closed for the season, so we parked in the large dirt area outside the gate by the sign and walked in. We started up the Coso Mine Loop Trail which continues up as the Isabella Peak Trail. As you can see from the sign it was only a mile and a half and was perfect for littles that haven’t hiked in awhile

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Some parts of the trail we were unsure of the correct path, looking out for the marker signs helped keep us on track

I’m glad we hiked early enough in the day to keep from roasting in the sun. I did not notice if the restrooms or drinking water at the campground were open at the time however the parks website said there are flush toilets, drinking water and a playground

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Almost immediately we had views of the lake across the freeway and the trail was very easy for everyone. No climbing necessary. Interestingly a sign stated that the trail was maintained by the local middle school. What a great idea!

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After quickly reaching the really non exciting mine that’s walled and fenced up we continued higher up the hill on the Isabella Peak Trail

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We were rewarded with a beautiful view and cool breezes

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A couple peak top photos later we were ready to head back down for lunch

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We crossed the street to picnic by the lake and the little kids cooled off in the water. What are you doing to stay cool this summer?