Calling all parents! Things to do in Escondido with your kids

Published Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011 by Erin Peet

Escondido has many things to enjoy with your family. They are free (or nearly free), fun, and help your family stay active. Today, we will highlight a few that we love:

Escondido Public Library

Did you know that the library has great free programs for young children?  The programs rotate so check the calendar. A few of our favorites are Wee-Wigglers Story Time, Bilingual Story Time, and Cowboy Charlie. Attending these fun classes with lots of songs and stories helps to instill a love of reading in your children. Learn more on the Library Events web page...

Kit Carson Park

Kit Carson is one of the best parks in Escondido. It is a fabulous place to go for a walk, stroll by the ponds, feed the ducks, and then take your kids to the playground. The best playground is at the south end of the park near the softball fields. The flat ground and gentle trails are good for kids who are learning to ride a bike. In addition, kids love Queen Califia's Magical Circle, a shimmering mosaic garden of art. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy a great day at this beautiful park! Learn more on the Kit Carson Park web page...

Farmer’s Market

Head on down to historic Grand Avenue to enjoy the Escondido Farmer’s Market with your children.  Kids love to learn about fruits and vegetables and even try the samples! The Escondido Farmer's Market has been around for 15 years. You can find it on Tuesdays from 2:30 to 6:00 pm between Juniper and Kalmia. Afterwards, take a walk and explore the Old Escondido neighborhood. Learn more on the Farmer's Market web page...

Grape Day Park

Grape Day Park is located in the heart of Escondido. It is a truly unique park because of the artistic playground (a slide in the shape of huge grapes and a grapevine climbing structure) and the historic buildings. There is even a train caboose! Saturdays in the Park provide wonderful free activities for kids. Activities usually start at 2:00 pm (check their calendar). A wonderful fountain right down the street at City Hall is also beloved by kids. Learn more on the Grape Day Park website...

Felicita Park

Felicita Park is yet another gorgeous park with two excellent playgrounds, a creek, lots of kid-friendly hiking, picnic areas, and beautiful oak trees. There is also a museum (check with a ranger about opening it up) and trail markers that provide information on the lifestyle of the Native Americans who once called the area their home. A $3 parking fee is charged at the entrance. Learn more on the Felicita Park web page...

Sight-see on Grand Avenue

Children enjoy just popping in to the bird room at Bird Haven and checking out the scaled creatures at LLL Reptile. Grand Garage Gear is a great stop for those who are interested in cars and motorcycles. You can window-shop for free, although you might not be able to get out of Swirlz Candy Emporium without dropping a few coins.

Ride the Sprinter

Got a kid who is obsessed with trains? Take a ride on the Sprinter! Leaving every half hour, it is perfect for an introduction to public transport. Ride it for a few stops (Palomar College is a good turn-around point), disembark and eat a picnic lunch on the platform, then ride it back to Escondido. Children age five and under are free. Adults are $2 each direction. Parking at the transit center is free. Learn more on the Sprinter Fares & Passes web page...

San Diego Children's Discovery Museum

Often called simply "the Children's Museum," this is the place for kids to do some hands-on learning. A huge tree in the center of the museum provides a place to climb and to learn about tree-dwelling creatures. Crafts and exhibits allow children to interact while learning. Outside there is a garden of native plants, water toys, a science shack, a historic classroom, and a "workshop" for making things out of wood scraps. Located in the complex behind Grape Day Park, it will soon be moving to a new location across the street on Broadway. Admission is $5 per person or $85 for an annual family membership (includes all children in the immediate family). Learn more on the Children's Discovery Museum website...

What are some of your favorite family and kid-friendly activities in Escondido? Share them here:

Join the discussion! 7 comments so far...

  1. These are great! I have to son loves walking up and down Grand. He calls it Cruisin' Grand even when it's a Tues afternoon. He loves all those places mentioned, and he also likes to make a stop at the vacuum cleaner store on the corner of Broadway.

    Comment by Jessica Petrencsik on November 2, 2011 at 10:36 PM

  2. Great Job Erin love the info!!!!

    Comment by Jessica Lovelady on November 3, 2011 at 5:29 AM

  3. Thanks for the ideas! Other activities my 3 year old daughter and I like to do include the Safari Park, the former Wild Animal Park and the free Family Events at North County Fair.

    It looks like the theme at the mall this month is outer space, where the kids will hear space-themed stories and make crafts. Mon 11/7 and Mon 11/21 from 10-11am on Level 1.

    Comment by Joy Cabrera on November 3, 2011 at 10:00 AM

  4. Oooh, Joy - Thanks for sharing about the family events at the mall. Sounds fun! I did not know of those...we'll be checking them out now for sure.

    Comment by Jessica Petrencsik on November 3, 2011 at 2:51 PM

  5. Two thumbs UP!

    Comment by Candy Salas on November 3, 2011 at 4:04 PM

  6. Thanks for the's good for grandmas and grandpas, too!

    Comment by Shirley Gerardy on November 4, 2011 at 8:59 AM

  7. This is excellent! As a new Mom, it's great to know there are so many wonderful things to do in town with my little one. Keep it coming!

    Comment by Christie O'Brien on November 4, 2011 at 2:21 PM

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