parents night out

All right, Parents, this article is just for you! We spend a lot of time talking about family togetherness and providing ideas for fun outings with kids. But let’s face it, in order to maintain a healthy relationship, parents need adults-only time. In fact, kids need a break from parents as well. So, do everyone in the family a favor and plan some fun, creative, parents-only dates. Daytime, nighttime—whatever your schedule allows. Here are unique ideas for couples needing a much-deserved break from the littles.

Go underground. Have you experienced a San Diego speakeasy yet? If not, why?! These hidden cocktail bars offer so much fun, mystery and intrigue. Check out Raised by Wolves in UTC Mall (La Jolla), Realm of the 52 Remedies in the Convoy District or False Idol in Little Italy. You won’t be disappointed! Reservations recommended.

Awaken your inner chef. Get hands-on culinary training when you register for a private or public cooking class with Cucina Migrante (your location or theirs), Sur la Table (Mission Valley or Carlsbad) or your local community college. 

Take a spin. Rent one of those little yellow GoCars or an electric scooter and take a spin around the Gaslamp, Balboa Park or Old Town for a fun afternoon. Then, stop by Wolfie’s Carousel Bar in Little Italy for a spin around the rotating bar (make a reservation in advance).

Escape for a weekend. If you can get away for an overnight, do it! Make it extra special at upscale resorts such as Park Hyatt Aviara or Omni La Costa in Carlsbad, or Paradise Point or Catamaran in Mission Bay. Each resort boasts stellar accommodations, wonderful spas and fabulous dining options.

Delve into the past. Check out Nat at Night at San Diego Natural History Museum on the third Friday of every month. Enjoy half-price admission after 5 pm, access to all exhibits, and the best views in Balboa Park from the rooftop patio and bar.

Cruise the bay (or ocean). Is whale watching, dinner and dancing, or a daytime tour of the San Diego Bay your vibe? City Cruises by Hornblower has it all. Choose your adventure with views of the downtown skyline and plenty of fresh air at www.cityexperiences.com/san-diego. 

Dine with a view. Enjoy ocean or bay views at 333 Pacific (Oceanside), Sea 180 (Imperial Beach), C-Level (Harbor Island), Monarch Ocean Pub (Del Mar) or Topsail at Portside Pier (downtown). For casual coastal dining, try Las Olas on Hwy 101 in Cardiff or Mitch’s Seafood in Point Loma.

Be an early bird. If mornings are your jam, make a reservation for breakfast at Brockton Villa in La Jolla, followed by a walk along Coast Blvd to La Jolla Cove; or explore Little Italy while you wait for a table at trendy Morning Glory.

Find happiness—during happy hour, that is! Outdoor firepits, live music, food and/or drink specials—each restaurant does it differently. There are many great happy hour spots around town (I’d love to hear your suggestions!), but here are a few I recommend: Bluewater Grill in Carlsbad or Coronado (HH: Sun–Thurs, 3–6 pm); Town & Country Resort’s Monkey Bar in Mission Valley (HH: Mon–Fri, 4–6 pm); Bali Hai on Shelter Island (HH: Mon–Thurs, 3–5 pm). Check each location’s website for details.

Get your heart pumping. Soar through the air on a tandem paragliding adventure at Torrey Pines Gliderport; explore San Diego by bike—traditional bike, surrey or hydrobike; kayak the La Jolla Caves with an expert guide; or take a free yoga class from Fit Athletic at The Rady Shell downtown—you won’t find a free yoga class with views like this anywhere else (reservations required). 

Catch a flick. When is the last time you saw a movie at a theater? Treat yourself to the latest box office hit at UltraStar Cinemas Mission Valley or one of the county’s two drive-in theaters (South Bay or Santee), or catch a classic film at the intimate Cinema Under the Stars in Mission Hills.

 

Get more ideas in our article “Date Nights on the Water.”

 

Lisa Gipson is the managing editor of San Diego Family; she’s always up for an adventurous outing with her husband or young adult daughters.

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