San Diego California Visitor Information

Balboa Park

Welcome to Balboa Park – the nation’s largest urban cultural park. Home to 15 major museums, renowned performing arts venues, beautiful gardens and the San Diego Zoo, the Park has an ever-changing calendar of museum exhibitions, plays, musicals, concerts, and classes—all in the beautiful and timeless setting of this must-see San Diego attraction.

Enjoy Balboa Park – a special place where you can experience San Diego’s natural beauty, wonderful art and culture and stunning Spanish Revival architecture. There are so many things to do and see in the Park:

  • museums ranging from art to science to air and space to natural history or anthropology
  • performing arts from plays at the Tony Award® -winning Old Globe to concerts on the magnificent Spreckels Organ Pavilion outdoor stage
  • lush landscaping and lovely gardens
  • the world famous San Diego Zoo
  • places for fun with families and recreation for all
  • and, of course, unique shopping, restaurants and casual outdoor dining.

Admittance is free to the Park grounds, Botanical building, outdoor gardens and some attractions. Admission charges vary at other cultural attractions – view prices by visiting the individual websites for the attractions of choice.

The Passport to Balboa Park offers visitors the chance to experience 13 museums in the Park, with the convenience of a one-time purchase. Choose the seven-day Passport or the Zoo/Passport Combo to embark on your Balboa Park adventure!

Are you on a tight schedule? Try our Stay-for-the-Day pass!

Balboa Park is located just minutes from downtown San Diego. The Balboa Park Visitors Center, located in the National Historic Landmark House of Hospitality building, is your primary resource for information about the Park. To help Balboa Park guests decide how to spend their time in the Park, Visitors Center volunteers offer brochures, maps, audio tours and information about museum exhibits, special events, Park recreational activities, free Park guided tours, the gardens, transportation, dining options and more.

Directions:

  • Southbound from I-5 – Take the 10th Avenue Exit off I-5. Turn left on “A” Street and left again on Park Blvd. Follow the signs to Balboa Park.
  • Northbound from I-5 – Take the B Street/Pershing exit off I-5 to Pershing Street. Take Pershing and then left on Florida Dr. Turn left on Zoo Place to Park Blvd. Left on Park Blvd.
  • Southbound from Hwy 163 – Take the Park Blvd. exit off Hwy 163. Turn left on Park Blvd. Follow the signs to Balboa Park.

The free tram provides access to Balboa Park’s museums and attractions. You can park in the Inspiration Point lot and wait at Tram Central, a shady arbor with benches. The tram will deliver you to into the heart of Balboa Park. Trams pick up from Tram Central every 8-10 minutes. Riders may also board at one of the designated pick-up areas around the Park. Make your first stop the Balboa Park Visitors Center (stop 2 after Tram Central) in the House of Hospitality where you can pick up a bi-monthly Events Guide and a detailed map. The tram operates seven days a week: 8:30am – 6:00pm. with extended hours during summer months. The Balboa Park Tram is provided as a free public service by the City of San Diego Park and Recreation Department.

For more information visit Balboa Park

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