We may be called America’s Finest City, but what truly sets us apart is our stellar weather perfect for outdoor activities. And as such, there’s certainly no shortage of ways to get out and enjoy the best that San Diego has to offer. Here are just a few of our favorites.
For more than 85 years, Self-Realization Fellowship has been dedicated to carrying on the spiritual and humanitarian work of its founder, Paramahansa Yogananda, widely revered as the father of yoga in the West. The Encinitas Self-Realization Meditation Gardens are beautifully and lovingly maintained by the SRF. Take time to meditate or watch for dolphins, whales, and surfers. A nearby gift and bookstore is located on the corner of K Street and Pacific Coast Highway. The SRF meditation garden is free to enjoy, but donations are accepted to help maintain its beauty. (www.yogananda-srf.org)
The Sonima Foundation
The Sonima Foundation offers dynamic health and wellness programs to schools and communities. Founded in 2011, the organization serves over 27,000 children grades K-12 across 55 schools in California, Florida, New York, and Texas. Sonima Health and Wellness curriculum provides children with skills that have been shown to minimize stress, lower incidences of bullying and violence, and improve school attendance and academic performance. The organization partners with educators to deliver cost effective health and wellness programs designed to provide students with techniques, habits, and training for lifelong health and wellness. (www.sonimafoundation.org)
ArtWalk NTC @ Liberty Station
The 10th annual ArtWalk NTC @ Liberty Station will be held August 15-16. Expect a weekend full of art, food, live entertainment, and fun for residents and visitors of all ages. Attendees will have the opportunity to purchase artwork from more than 175 local, regional, and international artists. The art displayed will cover nearly every medium, from oil painting and sculpture, to photography and jewelry. Art lovers can also enjoy live music, interactive art for adults and kids, delicious street food options, and a wine and beer pavilion in a beautiful al fresco setting. (www.artwalksandiego.org/ntc)
Bike the Bay, August 24
Take advantage of your only chance to pedal across the world-renowned San Diego Coronado Bay Bridge — because the other 364 days of the year, this beautiful view is reserved from inside your car. The annual sellout event attracts thousands of participants from across the country who travel to ride the bridge and a 25-mile course winding through five San Diego neighborhoods around the Bayshore Bikeway. (www.bikethebay.net)
Cardiff Kook Run & Encinitas Turkey Trot
The Cardiff Kook Run 5K, 10K and Costume Contest is “a celebration of the greatest community in the most amazing town on the map.” The annual event takes place each year on Super Bowl Sunday, and starts under the “Encinitas” sign on historic Highway 101. The scenic loop passes by the famous “Cardiff Kook” statue (The Magic Carpet Ride), rises above some of the most popular surf breaks in the world, and heads down to Cardiff State Beach. The team behind the Kook Run also brings us the Encinitas Turkey Trot. Start your Thanksgiving Holiday with friends, family, and thousands of costumed participants in support of the North County Community Food Bank. Visit the Encinitas Turkey Trot Facebook page for further details.
Rancho Valencia Yoga Pavilion
In late 2012, following a $30 million renovation, Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa re-opened its doors, revealing lush, Mediterranean-inspire accommodations. The resort’s fitness center was expanded with the addition of a peaceful, Zen-like 1,000-square-foot Serenity Yoga Pavilion complete with an infinity edge water feature and floating platform for instructors. There, guests can take advantage of yoga sessions and retreats hosted by top-tier fitness and wellness professionals throughout the year. (www.ranchovalencia.com)
Self Realization Fellowship: Photo by Evan Blumenfeld All Other Photography: Courtesy Photography