Bundle Up For Outdoor Winter Activities in San Diego

In San Diego, we’re lucky to have mild winters that don’t keep us cooped up inside. As long as you’re bundled up, winter can be just as good a time as any to get outdoors and enjoy some fresh air, sunlight, and cooler temperatures. Grab a coat, hat, scarf, mittens, and your favorite warm beverage! Keep reading for some ideas for outdoor winter activities that will help you and your family make the most of winter together.


Whale Watching

In the winter, gray whales pass by San Diego’s coastline on their migration from Alaska to Mexico. Sign up for a whale watching excursion to see these majestic creatures out on the water. You may also see dolphins, sea lions, and sea birds! Be sure to bring a heavy jacket and some blankets—you’ll probably experience some chilly winds on the boat.


Ice Skating

San Diego may not be cold enough to have lakes that freeze over, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy ice skating! Many of the city’s outdoor ice rinks close soon after the holiday season, but the Viejas Ice Rink (Southern California’s largest outdoor rink!) stays open through January 29th, 2017. Viejas has something for everyone. Kids will love an afternoon of ice skating, while parents and grandparents can spend some time at the slot machines and outlet shops.


Get Active

If you’re feeling chilly, get moving to warm up with these outdoor winter activities! Staying active is important, especially during the winter months. Take a hike at Torrey Pines State Reserve, where you can learn about local foliage while admiring sweeping ocean views. You can also opt for a bike ride on the Silver Strand, a bike path along the water between Imperial Beach and Coronado.


Go to the Beach

Winter is one of the best times to go to the beach in San Diego! The air is crisp, the sun is shining, and there are considerably fewer crowds during the colder months. See a stunning sunset at Sunset Cliffs, or bring a picnic to Mission Beach. Don’t forget to take a thermos full of hot chocolate!


Take a Day Trip to Julian

Plan a short trip to Julian for a fun winter escape. It’s only about an hour away, but you’ll feel like you’re stepping back in time. This quaint little town has lower temperatures and a lot to do. Stroll through shops, have a slice of their famous apple pie, and warm up with a cup of apple cider. You can also tour a gold mine, pan for gold, or go for a hike.


Snow Day

Even though San Diego doesn’t get snow, we only have to drive about an hour to find some, and what could be more fun for outdoor winter activities? Places like Julian, Mt. Laguna, and Palomar Mountain are perfect for a day of playing in the snow. Go sledding, make a snowman, and have a friendly snowball fight. Make sure to wear water-resistant pants, jackets, and shoes to stay dry and reduce your chances of catching a cold. Don’t forget sunscreen! Even when it’s cold, you can get a sunburn from the reflection of the sun on snow.


While cold weather alone can’t actually make you sick, studies have shown that colder temperatures can weaken your defenses against colds. If you’re feeling under the weather this winter, find a Scripps Affiliated Medical Groups doctor.


Healthy Lifestyles Local Activities Parenting Seniors & Caregivers
Senior Wellness Society

Join our Senior Wellness Society for the latest news on Medicare and tips for healthy living in San Diego!

Sign up now ›