A San Diego Holiday

Happy Holidays from sunny San Diego! Well, mostly sunny at least. We had some rain this morning, but the sun’s out now and hopefully we’ll have another gorgeous sunset tonight.

Sunsets on the bay
Sunsets on the bay

Our home for the week here in San Diego is at the Mission Bay RV Resort. It’s not what I would call a picturesque park…in fact it’s pretty much just a paved parking lot with tiny strips of grass between the rows. That’s okay though because we’re here for the location, not the campground.

San Diego
Our piece of parking lot

Despite feeling a bit like a tiny fish lost in a blacktop sea of monster sized RVs, we’ve discovered quite a few positive aspects to the park itself. First of all, there’s the full-hook ups. Full-hook ups mean we get to spend our holidays consuming as much electricity and hot water as we want. There’s also an on-site laundry facility which is a pretty luxurious perk for us these days. So our clothes our clean, we are clean, and all our electronics are charged. Life is good. But wait, there’s more. There’s a beach with dog hours, a walking path (with great sunset views), and best of all only a few minutes down the road is Fiesta Island,  a leash-free doggie heaven where romping is the name of the game.

Mission Bay
Happy to be back in the water

The other major perk to staying at Mission Bay is that we get to enjoy some social time with fellow RVrs. Just a few sites down the lane are Nina, Paul and doggie Polly from the Wheeling It blog. They’ve been full-timing for about three years now, and we’ve been following their blog for almost as long. In fact, Nina and Paul’s travels were a huge part of what inspired us to take on this wacky lifestyle. After following them around the country via the Internet for so long it was great to finally meet them in person. It almost felt like meeting celebrities :) Yesterday Nina invited us along for a trip over to Fiesta Island where the two dogs trotted around the island, chased some sticks in the water and then pretty much ignored each other. Dogs are funny.

Excitement on the beach, Polly waits for Phineas to get the stick, Polly looking pretty in the sun
Excitement on the beach, Polly waits for Phineas to get the stick, Polly looking pretty in the sun

Staying at Mission Bay also gives us close access to all the city has to offer. Besides two trips to Fiesta Island, an evening walk around the South Beach Area, a shopping experience at Trader Joe’s and our first visit to a grocery store complete with it’s own parking garage (yes, that’s two food shopping trips in week. Don’t judge…it’s the holidays). We also hit up the Hillcrest Farmer’s Market on Sunday morning where vendors handed out yummy samples and you could buy everything from gluten-free baked goods to whole raw chickens. We mostly just looked because, as mentioned above, we’d already done quite a bit of food shopping. Although I couldn’t resist buying one huge pomegranate to go with our Christmas dinner.

All sorts of fresh goodies at the farmer's market
All sorts of fresh goodies at the farmer’s market

We also spent an entire day at the Zoo!

An curious Orangutan named Karen
An curious Orangutan named Karen

This last one was a big outing for us. We don’t always visit major attractions in the cities and towns where we stay. Especially if they’re expensive or likely to be crowded with other people. Usually we stick to low key activities like walks on the beaches, or free museums and visitor centers. This was an exception. The San Diego Zoo is pretty famous and we thought a visit would be a good holiday treat. It tuned out to be a great decision. There was a huge variety of animals and since it was a cool day with temps only in the mid-60s most of them were out in view soaking up some rays.

Lounging Polar Bear
Lounging Polar Bear

Any visit to a zoo always brings about mixed feelings. On one hand, I feel lucky to see these animals up close and personal, but on the other hand I feel sad for the animals trapped behind bars. The SD Zoo is large with nice enclosures and I’m sure as far as zoos go they provide a good life for their animals, but it can still make for a somewhat bittersweet experience.

A beautiful animal behind bars
A beautiful animal behind bars
Flamingos are so cool
Flamingos doing what flamingos do
The best Zebra photo was from behind... of their behinds
The best Zebra photo was from behind… of their behinds
A Hippo taking an underwater nap
A Hippo taking an underwater nap
Captured mid-chew
Captured mid-chew
This one was called a Lesser Spot-nosed Guenon
This one was called a Lesser Spot-nosed Guenon
Camels are funny
Camels are funny
A Grizzly munching on kale
A Grizzly munching on kale
Just chillin'
Just chillin’

We spent almost 6 hours walking around trying to see all the animals. I think the only part of the zoo we didn’t visit was the petting zoo (mostly goats). I even reluctantly went through the reptile house where all the creepy snakes and lizards live. You’ll notice there are no pictures from that part of the zoo. Not something I want to remember. Overall our visit to the zoo was an amazing experience and we had a blast walking around the beautiful grounds.

One more spectacular west coast sunset
One more spectacular west coast sunset

We’ll be here in San Diego until Friday and have lots more to see and do. Tomorrow we plan to spend Christmas day sticking close to home with maybe a quick visit over to the dog beach. Wishing everyone out there a Happy Christmas Eve and a Merry Christmas day.

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