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Top Rated Attractions in Carlsbad

Search Radius (Miles)
Legoland California

Just 30 miles (48 kilometers) north of San Diego, you can spend an entire day at Legoland California living in the land of imagination experiencing more than 40 fun-filled rides, adventures and shows. 'Activity' is the word for the day with 128 acres (51.7 hectares) of displays including MiniLand where replicas of famous sites (Hollywood Bowl, Washington, D.C.) are created from Legos. In the Imagination Zone, children under six can play with Duplos to their hearts' content. Kids over six can check out the 'Build & Test' center. Themed areas include Castle Hill and Pirate Shores.

Torrey Pines State Reserve

One of only two places on the California coast where these gnarled, once nearly extinct specimens grow, visitors will witness more than 3000 Torrey Pines in this untamed 2000-acre (809 hectares) reserve. You will also see cliffs, mesas, canyons, beaches, and wetlands. Discover eight trails ranging from a 20-minute walk to a two-hour hike. Trail maps are available at the Visitor's Lodge, where you'll also find a modest natural history museum complete with a souvenir shop. Despite the shade, it can be hot in the summer, so bring your own water. See website for maps, online resources and more. Open daily from 8a

La Jolla Caves

Climb 145 steps down into Sunny Jim Cave, the largest of the grottoes in La Jolla Cove. The area is now run by the Cave Store, which displays historic photographs of La Jolla and offers a small concession where visitors can purchase souvenirs, postcards, and T-shirts. A trip here provides a fascinating glimpse into what lies under, as well as over, the scenic California coastline.

Salk Institute

The famous biological research facility, founded by renowned polio vaccine inventor Jonas Salk, is perched high above La Jolla surrounded by 26 acres (10.5 acres). Modernist architect Louis I. Kahn designed the twin-structured building in 1965. The landscape includes a courtyard area, "Stream of Life" and a foot-wide water display inspired by architect Louis Barragan which flows through the marble courtyard between the buildings.

Athenaeum Music & Arts Library

Expand your knowledge and appreciation for both music and the arts at this expansive library. This location holds collections of videos, books, periodicals and other literature all devoted to fine arts. Beyond the library, Athenaeum holds year-round exhibitions of fine art as well as concerts, featuring jazz and chamber music. Studio art classes are also available to the public.

Ellen Browning Scripps Park

Named for newspaper heiress and early La Jolla resident Ellen Browning Scripps, this community park offers one of the best views along the Southern California coastline. The park overlooks La Jolla Cove where clear Pacific waters crash against the rocky shoreline. Countless tourists and locals flock to this park for daytime picnics on the perfectly manicured lawns surrounded by palm trees. The grounds are also ideal for evening strolls while watching glorious sunsets. For those seeking a glimpse of the local seal population Children's Pool Beach is located at the south end of the park.

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