Tuesday, February 05, 2013

A Tourist Visits Balboa Park

Before visiting San Diego I had no idea of the vastness of Balboa Park. Set in 1200 acres of land in the city, it's one of the world's largest urban parks. Home to 17 museums, numerous parks, a theatre, and other delights, it's someplace where one can spend oodles of time. 

The Spanish-influenced architecture is amazing. Many of the buildings were constructed in 1916-17 for the celebration of the opening of the Panama Canal. More construction happened in the 1930s as part of a make-work project during the Depression. I was taken by the light slanting through the openings of this long colonnade paralleling the main pedestrian avenue.

Wonderful mosaics and carvings embellish the buildings. While there I visited the Timken Art Museum, and the Museum of Art. Tim spent his time in the Museum of Natural History.

When we visit a place with palm trees, Tim always reminds me of something I asked of him when we were first married. Having grown up in northern BC I had never seen a palm tree growing outside, so I asked him to take me to such a place one day. Twenty years in Ecuador certainly count, as do visits to the southern USA and Mexico. We laugh over this still.

How lovely it was to sit on a bench in the warm sunshine, book open on my lap, while people-watching. A Frenchwoman and her elderly mother sat on the bench just across the way and I picked up bits and pieces of their conversation. A few families passed by, children running ahead to the nearby fountain while the parents plodded steadily on. I don't often take photos of the people I watch, but I so enjoyed watching this chic cyclist pedal by. 

Do you enjoy people-watching? 


  1. Oh, I do enjoy people watching...fascinating!

    I have never heard of Balboa Park, but it looks like a wonderful place to visit. Love your palm tree story. :)

  2. Today we woke up to heavy fog and dreariness. It was lovely to see this post with beautiful skies and warmth.

  3. I would have taken that shot of the cyclist, too. How neat it is that her child sits ahead of her in a special bike seat. So much nicer than the seats where the child is strapped behind and can become hyper stimulated while the rider knows nothing of it.

    Now I should comment on the buildings and the plantings and such...beautiful. I especially like the first photo, but I still love the cyclist best.

    1. Course that child needs sunglasses, too.

  4. Hello Lorrie,

    Thanks for sharing this! Fabulous place! Love the mosaic art.


  5. A favorite past time, people watching. You learn so much. I've always called myself a student of human nature. Great pictures. I love the arch one. California is a place I've never been.

  6. Don't you love that place?

    I occasionally take photos of the people I watch...and have even gotten myself into trouble by doing that. People watching is a fun sport! She makes a lovely picture...your chic cyclist.

  7. People watching? Better than eating chocolate!

    Eavesdropping too, although that’s rather ill-mannered, but I never said I had good manners.

  8. Ha! I do enjoy people watching. Sometimes I'll even make up stories about what they are doing and saying. That's when I'm stuck for a long time somewhere like the airport. Your photos from Balboa Park are lovely.

  9. Sounds like you had a favorite day :-)

  10. San Diego is a nice place to visit. And yes, that park is HUGE! Glad you had a good time. I do some people-watching, but mostly I pay more attention to wildlife!

  11. Love that first shot, Lorrie ... so inviting. My son and his wife got married in San Diego and I wish I had known about this place then. I am sure I could have found a few hours to spend there as we were there for 4 or 5 days.

  12. "twenty years in Ecuador"...still amazed me that was your life. Looks like a beautiful park!

  13. I've been to San Diego twice, but somehow missed this park. Looks like a beautiful place to visit and a beautiful day to do so. That blue sky is amazing.
    People watching? One of my very favorite pastimes :D.

  14. Anonymous6:51 AM

    Yes, I like people-watching too! I'm sure it was lovely sitting on that bench in the sunshine.

  15. Enjoyed my visit. Daughter visits San Diego for medical conferences but the only photos I have seen of hers are on the waterfront.


Thank you for your comment. I read and value each one, cherishing the connections we can make although far apart. Usually, I visit your blog in return, although if you ask a question I try to contact you directly.

Living Alongside Medieval History

  Several people have asked why we chose Leiden for our visit to the Netherlands. We've found it's easy to stay in the large cities ...