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Senior Citizen Activities Guide: San Diego, CA

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12 Activities for Seniors in San Diego
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12 Activities For Seniors in San Diego

June 28, 2021

San Diego is one of the best places for seniors to spend their golden years. The weather is warm year-round, there's always something to do and there's never a need to travel far to experience the best the city has to offer.

a photo of the san diego skyline, with palm trees in the foreground

There are hundreds of activities for seniors. But figuring out the best activities with so many to choose from can be overwhelming.

At Elmcroft, we believe that life should be full of fun and joy. Here are a few of the top activities for seniors right in San Diego. 


1. Take in a Padres Game at Petco Park

San Diego is lucky enough to have its own Major League baseball team, the Padres. And when they play home games, seniors can reap the rewards!

Seniors aged 60 and older can save $6 on home game tickets. Keep in mind that you may be asked for a valid photo ID when you purchase or pick up your tickets to verify the senior's age. Even better, there's no limit to how many times you can use the discount!

Diehard Padres fans can head to the stadium and save on tickets for each game they attend!

2. Tour the San Diego Zoo in a Golf Cart

The San Diego Zoo has long been regarded as one of the top zoos in the country and with more than 100 acres and 650 exhibits to explore, it's no wonder why! Bring your loved one and the grandkids and take in animals of all kinds.

Reserve a cart tour and see the zoo in comfort while learning about the animals from an experienced guide. Go behind the scenes and see what the animal caretakers do to keep them happy and healthy. And if there's an interest in big cats, book the Crazy About Cats tour and learn from the cats' caretakers about the different species they work with.

If your loved one has always wanted to visit Africa but hasn't made the trip, head over to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. There, you'll see animals like zebras, giraffes, elephants, rhinos and even lions in environments close to their natural habitat.

3. Attend Themed Dances With the City

If your loved one was passionate about dancing when they were younger but hasn't found a place to get back into it, now is a perfect time. The City of San Diego regularly hosts themed dance nights throughout the year. These events are open to seniors only and happen on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month at the Balboa Park Club Ballroom.

If dancing isn't something your loved one can do but they still want to appreciate the artform, visit the Balboa Park Dancers. They perform different styles and practice often so every practice will be unique for both you and your loved one.

Elmcroft also hosts regular dance nights with mobility needs in mind, so even if your loved one can't participate in town, they can still shake a leg at home.

4. Go Picnicking at Mission Beach

Mission Beach is one of the most popular beaches in the city for a reason: it's beautiful! And the area is full of additional activities and restaurants to make the time spent by the water even more enjoyable.

Bring a picnic blanket and your loved one's favorite food. If you don't want to make food, you can pick up a meal to-go from one of the nearby restaurants like The Mission, Beach House Grill or PB Poke House.

Set up a spot on the sand and enjoy people-watching while spending time together. Once you're done, you can walk in the surf or take a stroll or bike ride along the paved multi-use path that follows the beach. If mobility is a concern, manual, powered and floating beach wheelchairs are available to rent nearby.

5. Go Fishing at One of the City’s Piers

Fishing can be incredibly relaxing and exciting at the same time. The city is full of accessible fishing spots that can be enjoyed from the shore. Even better, many of the city's piers are accessible, making it easy to bring your loved one with mobility challenges out for a day in nature.

Head to the Coronado Ferry Pier and fish for spotted bay bass, mackerel or bonito in designated areas. Be sure to follow posted signs and have a valid fishing license.

For a lesser-known spot, the Embarcadero Marina Park South Fishing Pier is a great choice. Fewer species swim in these waters, but anglers will still find great fishing for mackerel, calico bass and even small barracuda.

Oceanside Pier is almost always busy, but its size makes it easy to find a good spot to set up. There, species like halibut, yellowtail, perch, white sea bass and barracuda are abundant. It's the perfect spot for both experienced and beginner anglers, making it ideal for bringing the grandkids, too.

6. Take a Trolley Tour

Downtown San Diego is a great place to experience the city up close, and the Red Trolley line makes outings with your loved one easy, fun, and convenient.

The Trolley stops at Civic Center Plaza, Fifth Avenue, Park & Market, and Fashion Valley. Along those stops, you will find plentiful restaurants and shopping opportunities while being able to see San Diego's unique architecture with ease.

Tickets are just $6 a day but seniors can get a monthly pass for just $23.

Even better, you'll be able to take your loved one on a fun outing without the hassle and stress of finding accessible parking.

7. Experience the Unique Culture and History at a Museum

The large variety of museums is one of the biggest perks about living near a big city like San Diego. Take your loved one and the grandkids to the New Children's Museum and let your loved one embrace their inner child by experiencing the interactive exhibits firsthand. Admission for seniors is just $10.

Lovers of fine art can head to the San Diego Museum of Art and view pieces from artists across the globe. Tickets are discounted for seniors aged 65 and older.

Get to know the history of San Diego by visiting the Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. There, visitors can learn about the Mexican influence, the Spanish settlements and the eventual transition to an American state all in one place.

8. Take in a Show at Spreckels Organ Pavilion or the Symphony

San Diego has a rich entertainment and music scene that you and your loved one can enjoy throughout the year. On Sunday evenings during the summer, head to the Coronado Promenade and enjoy live music with your loved one under a beautiful, clear sky.

Experience the world's largest pipe organ at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion every Monday evening during the summer months and listen to local musicians while enjoying the mild weather.

If your loved one is passionate about classical music, the San Diego Symphony offers concerts throughout the year and even streams some of their shows so you and your loved one can watch together from the comfort of your couch.

9. Take Craft Lessons with the Whole Family

Crafting is a great way to keep seniors' minds active and their creative juices flowing. And San Diego Craft makes it easy to develop a new hobby or pursue an existing creative outlet with your loved one. They routinely schedule classes in woodworking, glass art, ceramics and yarn arts.

Many of the classes are suitable for all ages and skill levels, so bring the grandkids, too!

Your loved one will even be able to continue pursuing that passion when they get home. Elmcroft has many crafting programs on-site that help foster a thriving community with a passion for the arts. 

10. Explore the Local Wineries

Though Napa Valley may have a reputation for being the best wine country in California, San Diego gives it a run for its money. Visit one of the many local wineries with your loved one and taste the best southern California offers. This can be especially fun if you have family visiting from out of town at the same time.

Bernardo Winery features different tasting experiences and numerous shops on-site, making it a true winery experience. For those looking for a more urban experience, Carruth Cellars Wine Garden, Blue Door Winery and San Pasqual Winery all produce their wines right in town. Visitors will be able to experience the benefits of local vineyards without leaving the city proper.

11. Connect With the City's Senior Activity Center

San Diego has a thriving senior population, and the city makes getting together easier with the senior activity and events program, AgeWell Services. Events and activities change with the season and range from crafting classes to themed dances.

Bring your loved one to open hours in the Senior Lounge in Balboa Park and take advantage of the ongoing events and programs at the center.

12. Experience the Best of San Diego with Elmcroft

Take a tour of an Elmcroft community today to see how your loved one can experience the best that San Diego has to offer while providing your loved one with the care and attention they need to live their happiest life. Our communities in the San Diego area include:

Our locations are convenient to many of the city's top attractions and are surrounded by restaurants that you, your loved one, and the rest of your family can enjoy together. Between visits, your loved one will have access to a thriving community full of activities and fun in a safe, supportive environment.

Contact Us to learn more about Elmcroft today and see how we can help your loved one live life to the fullest. 

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