Guide to Visiting La Jolla
So, you’re coming to La Jolla for vacation. Maybe you’re even thinking about moving here. This page will link out to pretty much everything we know and love in our seaside town including best restaurants, things to do and hotels to consider.
About La Jolla
La Jolla is a seaside community that occupies about seven miles of coastline along the Pacific Ocean and is one of the best family vacation spots in San Diego. We’re about 12 miles north of downtown San Diego and about 40 miles south of Orange County. According to Wikipedia, the average daily temperature is 70.5° F (21.4° C).
La Jolla is well known for beautiful beaches, upscale shopping and San Diego’s best restaurants. I love being a parent here because we can be outside more or less year-round with major attractions like Legoland and the San Diego Zoo all within close proximity.
This is important —> La Jolla is pronounced la-HOY-ah.
See also: What and Where Is La Jolla, California
Best Hotels in La Jolla
Where you stay depends on whether or not you need to have certain things like the beach or a variety of restaurants within walking distance. Look at where each place is located on the map below. I have also written a list of best La Jolla hotels.
Boutique and/or Beachfront Hotels
- Hotel La Jolla
- Pantai Inn
- La Jolla Shores Hotel
- La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club
- Grande Colonial Hotel
- Empress Hotel La Jolla
- Inn by the Sea
- La Jolla Inn
Pet-Friendly La Jolla Hotels
Popular La Jolla Attractions
See also: 10 Best Places to Take Photos in La Jolla
There are quite a few things to do in La Jolla. My favorites include:
- Torrey Pines Gliderport
- Mt. Soledad Veteran’s Memorial
- La Jolla Shores Beach
- Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla (closed for renovation until 2020)
- La Jolla Underwater Park (for kayaking, snorkeling)
- The La Jolla Seals and Sea Lions at Children’s Pool and La Jolla Cove
- La Jolla Cove
- Birch Aquarium
- Stuart Collection at UC San Diego
- La Jolla Open Aire Market (Sundays only)
- Map and Atlas Museum of La Jolla
- La Jolla Recreation Center
- Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
See also: FREE Things to Do in La Jolla, Fun Things to Do Around La Jolla with Dogs, and Top Things to Do in La Jolla with Kids
If you are also considering visiting San Diego’s best attractions like the San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld and more, check out our affiliate Go San Diego pass, which provides discounted entry to 40+ attractions for one low price.
LJM Exclusive: Use promo code LJM10SDO to apply an extra 10% discount on ALL Go San Diego passes. The discount stacks on top of sale prices. Expires 12/31/23.
La Jolla Restaurants
To be honest, all La Jolla restaurants are family-friendly. Which you choose depends on if you’d prefer fine dining or something more casual though the two concepts tend to blend together here.
The Best Restaurants
- George’s California Modern
- The Marine Room
- Eddie V’s
- Brockton Villa
- CUSP Dining and Drinks
- Sugar and Scribe
- El Pescador
- Sushi on the Rock
To-Go and Fast-Casual
- The Taco Stand (best Mexican, in my opinion)
- Bahia Don Bravo
- Trilogy Sanctuary Cafe
La Jolla Breakfast Restaurants
- Brockton Villa
- The Cottage
- Coffee Cup
Artisan Coffee Shops
- Bird Rock Coffee Roasters
- Living Room
La Jolla Nightlife
If you’re looking for nightclubs and late-night dancing, high-energy nightlife does not exist in La Jolla. What is available includes nice wine, creative cocktails and plenty of places to hang out late with friends under the stars or indoors.
- Eddie V’s
- George’s Bar
- The Spot
- The Comedy Store
Other La Jolla Entertainment
- The LOT: Our only movie theater has a fantastic restaurant and bar inside as well as service at your seats during a movie.
- Segway Tours
- Electric Bike Tours
- Surf Diva: Highly recommend for surfing or stand-up paddleboard lessons
It is wise to book a rental car if visiting La Jolla in order to get around.