Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Beautiful La Jolla, California

La Jolla

I had the lucky opportunity to travel to La Jolla, California for a technical writing conference in April 2012. La Jolla (lə-HOY) is a northern suburb of San Diego and is one of the richest neighbourhoods in the United States. I spent the majority of my sightseeing time in La Jolla, along the rocky shorelines and beaches. La Jolla is extremely beautiful and I see why so many people live in California.

After arriving on Sunday, I had a few hours before the conference reception so I took a taxi cab to the La Jolla village and coastal area to walk around and take pictures.

View of La Jolla shoreline.

Cormorants, pelicans and sea lions

Along the shoreline there's a pathway with great ocean views. You can walk to a place called The Children's Pool where seals lie on the beach. You're not supposed to get too close to the seals and it's an area of controversy between local groups. People on the beach were being respectful and keeping their distance.

Seals at The Children's Pool

Seal just coming out of the water at The Children's Pool

One of the most beautiful features of La Jolla are the sandstone cliffs. Fortunately, a lot of the native plants were also in bloom.

I hope they're not in a hurry for high tide

Loved this sea cave


Kayak Tour

After the conference ended on Wednesday I joined a guided kayak tour of the 7 caves of La Jolla. I rented a waterproof digital camera but didn't get very many good pictures, only three or four, since most of the photos have water droplets on the lense casing. The best part of the guided tour was entering Emerald cave. Kayaking on the ocean is quite different from kayaking on a lake, the waves at the start are a challenge.

View of the 7 caves as we approach on kayak. The homes along the shoreline here are worth several million dollars.

Close-up of some of the caves, you can see cormorants along the cliff edges.
Emerald cave

Inside Emerald cave, tough shot with the waves and water on the lense.

Torrey Pines

I took Thursday off as a vacation day, rented a car, and went hiking in the beautiful Torrey Pines State Park. It's about 15 minutes north of La Jolla with trails overlooking the ocean. It was a busy spot for joggers. Beautiful sunny day, and of course I left my sunscreen at the hotel and ended up with a sunburn.
The park borders Torrey Pines golf course, part of the PGA tour and the site where Tiger Woods won the 2008 US Open.  As the sign below shows, it's home to the Torrey pine, one of the rarest pine trees in the United States. It's only found in one other place.

Panoramic view along the trail

One of my favourite views and photos of the park

I really enjoyed my time hiking in Torrey Pines, it was more beautiful than I expected and was one of the nicest hikes I've ever done. Views of the beaches and the ocean were breathtaking.

The cliffs really reminded me of Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah

An egret along the beach near Torrey Pines

Carlsbad Flower Fields

After my hike I drove up along the coast to Carlsbad and did a quick tour of the Flower Fields. It's a privately owned area where they plant tons of flower bulbs that bloom in April and May. The flowers were nice but I found the $11 entrance fee a bit steep considering I was there about 45 minutes. The drive was nice though; Cardiff By The Sea looks like a beautiful coastal town that I would have liked to spend more time in.

Coronado Island

The other sightseeing trip I took with the rental car was to the beautiful island of Coronado, near southern San Diego. The homes there were so nice and all had beautiful landscaping. The main draw is the long white sand beach and the Hotel del Coronado, an old heritage inn.

As a gardener, I loved looking at all the beautiful yards around the island. It seemed everything was in full bloom. I was so envious of their amazing weather and how nice their gardens looked.

One of the many beautiful vines along a fence in full bloom

Well that's it for the trip. My first time ever in California and it didn't disappoint. I loved my few days there and came home saying I need to win the lottery so I can move to La Jolla.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful photos, Belinda. I'm glad you enjoyed your time in La Jolla.

    Elizabeth Hansen