I also prefer the Wild Animal Park to the SD Zoo. However, I love them both!!! One thing to check before you go: They seem to be having trouble with the Monorails and may shut them down for a long while while they are being rebuilt and the paths changed. It was reported that they will be splitting the track into two circuits rather than one huge one. This will make it much more family friendly as each one would be about 25 minutes rather than the current 55-60 minutes (a long time when you are a toddler who has to go potty). If the monorail is going to be down, you might want to go to the Zoo instead.
While in SD, don't miss Old Town. I love it there. Sea World is fun too (if you haven't been to the one in Orlando)
The Monorail(the "Wgsa Bush Line", and there is a interesting story how it got this name, but can't talk about it here) is thirty years old. Originally built by a subsiderary of WABCO (Westinghouse Air Brake) the firm was sold to Chula Vista based Rohr Industries at the time of the Wild Animal Park installation. At the time Rohr was expanding into the rail transit business, eventually building trains for BART in San Fran,MARTA in Atlanta, and the WAMTA in Washington DC, as well as several sets of gas turbine powered trains for AMTRACK. However the bailed out of the transit business by the early 80's and orphaned the equipment at the Wild Animal Park. The mechanics there have done a great job keeping the system running under the circumstances. However during the Winter Holidays they had two trains go down at night out on the line, with a lot of negative publicity surrounding how it was handled. Rumours are flying around that it's going to be replaced with what sounds like propane fuel parking lot trams.
I hate the Zoo. I live in San Diego and in February my school took us on a field trip and it has been our rainiest year and I was wet and lost my assignment about the zoo so avoid it. And plus, the panda is so lazy.
I heard that same rumor about the WAP, but they said it was going to be shortened and the rest would be accessible by Safari Land Rover Type Cars
Sea World is so-so. After Anheuser Busch bought it. it lost that 1970s look with the extinction of the Japanese Pearl Divers, Sparklette's Water Fantasy Show, Captain Kidd's Play Land (The Ball pits, Slides, and Rope Swings) It also seemed to turn away from just watching the animals and giving away free pretzels at the exit to building rides and giving away free beer at the Clydedales. I don't care for the prices either.
Legoland is very European in size and loks. It's small, less crowded, and worth the money. It has some rides and good California cuisine.
Parks to Avoid: Belmont Park, Fun 4 All, Boomers, D&G Sons Carnivals at Plaza Bonita(Seasonal), or Parque Divertido de Tijuana(Mexico).
About Seaport Village..........
Originally Posted by SoCalDude
The restaurants are very good, and not overly priced at all.
I paid 4 dollars for a soda, and that was small size and cheapest I could find.
one of the greatest things about the sdz is when you buy your souvenier animal drink cup, it's free to refill all day! it's like $7 and all you have to do is keep your receipt for free refills! also all throughout the zoo they have foot massager things that are a quarter and you stand on them and they make you feet feel well enough to continue walking for a few more hours... also i suggest getting an all day bus pass and 2 skyway tickets per person... this will greatly improve your experience at the zoo
I'm quite surprised at all the negative comments about the Zoo, even going so far as hating it. It is one of the greatest zoos and botannical gardens in the world. My first visit was in '52 and I fell in love. It's been one of the constant things in my life.
I've been a member of the SD Zoological Socity for many years and remember vividly the opening of the Wild Animal Park. This was originally conceived and built as a breeding facility for endangered species and as a sideline to the zoo nor was it planned as a tourist attraction. During its first years in operation it was incredibly hot during the summer due to lack of shade. As it matured and more things were added it became a nice compliment to its big sister.
While lacking in the sheer number of species and beauty of the setting, it is nevertheless a first rate attraction.
Aaahhh... if you visit San Diego DEFINITELY visit Old Town.
I will often in the summer make an afternoon trip down to SD (not a cheap or easy venture, considering it's a 1.5 hour drive with no traffic!) JUST to have authentic Mexican food from Old Town, and to check out the old shops and things. It's like Knott's Berry Farm, sort of. All historical, and very beautiful.
There is a restaurant I drive down there specifically for, called Casa de Pico. EASY for a party of two to get out of there for no more than $35, with a margarita each. Since the boy and I aren't 21, we get out meals and tip for about $25. I ALWAYS get the Cheese Crisp Special. Here's a link:
The Bazaar Del Mundo is no more. The long time concessionaire Diane Powers lost the lease to Delaware North Corp. The land actually belongs to CALTRANS. The resteraunts are being relocated. Many shops and eateries are going to be at the yet to be refurbished Old Police Station at Seaport Village.