La Jolla Photo Diary

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From where I stand – or rather sit, bundled up in a blanket, third cup of coffee in hand – something needs to be done about the less-than-thrilling weather situation outside. If you, like me, have yet to dare venture out of the house, then I'm certain you will agree.

Thus, I have decided to take matters into my own hands and am continuing to share sunny photo diaries and short musings and recollections from our road trip up the California coast, with today's destination being the sunny La Jolla, or as Siri was quick to point out, La-HOY-a.

La Jolla is an affluent community a little north of San Diego downtown. It is surrounded by ocean bluffs and beaches on three sides and is well-known for its extensive populations of wildlife, specifically wild seals, which, upon arrival, can immediately be spotted lounging in groups on the rocks. Someone in the crowd nearby jokingly referred to them as living the "true Californian dream" – with few cares in the world other than swimming and sunning. The picturesque sights of the ocean, as well as the ample opportunity for people-watching, are very worth the unbearable heat and exhaustion of walking along the seven-mile stretch of this hilly seaside community.

Although it was late November when we visited, dozens of tourists and locals alike were swimming and snorkeling, some even venturing out to where the seals laid. If you prefer a bit of a private oasis, head to the Children's Pool Beach (also known as Casa Beach), and follow the Children's Pool Observatory Walkway to the southernmost part of the walkway, and you'll find a partially secluded stretch of the beach that will feel like your own private island. When we visited, the Children's Pool Observatory Walkway was under construction, so we literally had to sneak down the cliffs down to the beach, which could possibly explain why there were so few people down there. Regardless, it is far less crowded than the main part of the Children's Pool right of Point Mercinger. 

Another highlight of our day trip to La Jolla was brunch at Cody's, if not for the food then definitely for the entertaining atmosphere. Catching bits and pieces of conversations from the surrounding tables, we felt every bit as outsiders observing a completely foreign world, where veganism, someone's avocado habit and phrases like "daddy is paying for brunch" were all part of normal, adult conversations. To add to the so-cliche-it-hurts injury, it appeared that one had to be a male, wear a white T-shirt and sport an obligatory man bun in order to work there – an observation that immediately reminded me of my little sister, whose self-professed adoration for men with long and luscious locks had become a running joke in our circle of friends.

Jokes aside, Cody's is a charming establishment located along the palm tree-lined Girard Avenue, with succulent-lined walls, a cheerful outdoor eating area and delightful views of the ocean. We ordered the fish and chips and settled in for an afternoon of people-watching. 

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17 Comments

  1. Hi Oksana! I am doing the same trip as you from san Diego to San Francisco next fall. I am from Canada and i’m planning on doing this in 14 days wich my boyfriend. I would like to know how much money could this possibly cost? I saw that some hotel rooms in california are really pricey and out of my budget but i am kind of afraid of the 1.5 stars one… I would love to have some advices for my trip!

    Thank you!

    • Hi Charlene!

      Thank you so much for reading and taking the time to comment! 14 days is plenty for this road trip; my husband and I had a total of 8, and that included flying from and back to Tennessee. You’re absolutely right about hotels being quite pricy, but we were celebrating our wedding anniversary so we would occasionally splurge on a nicer room, especially after a long drive. Having said that, I am totally not above sleeping in the car every once in a while and have done so on a road trip across Europe. :)

      Other budget-friendly suggestions: Book your rooms using priceline.com or hotwire.com. If you opt for the “secret deal” feature, you can land pretty amazing deals on 3- and 4- star hotels. I’m talking less than $100 per night. The downside to that, however, is because these deals are secret, you won’t know which hotel you’re booking until after you’ve booked it. But we only had positive experiences thus far, and we regularly use both sites when traveling!

      Also, if possible, try to stay a little outside of the main city. For example, our first night in LA (which, by the way, is one of the most expensive cities in CA) we stayed at a Westin in Pasadena, just outside Los Angeles. It’s a 4-star luxury hotel, but we were able to find a deal for around $85 per night – a total steal compared to hotel rooms in LA.

      To be realistic, I would budget approximately $100 per night for a decent hotel, and at the very least $50 per day for food (unless you plan to eat fast-food most of the time). Add to that the flight to and from CA, the car rental, gas, parking, and any extra activities you decide to do, and the trip ends up being quite costly.

      Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have additional questions or need more tips! You can email me directly at radionova.oksana@gmail.com!

      XO, Oksana

  2. I can’t tell you how badly I want to jump into your photos right now! It’s bone chilling cold in Chicago. Just looking at these warms me up a bit!

  3. The very first time I visited La Jolla I just fell in love. I was in high school and seriously considered changing my major just so I could go to college there. Obviously moving to La Jolla didn’t happen but I knew I wanted to return. Such a beautiful area!

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