Toddler-friendly excursion to Mt. Laguna and Lake Cuyamaca
Often overlooked, Mt. Laguna and Lake Cuyamaca offer scenic views and toddler-friendly hikes within an hour’s drive from San Diego.
The drive to the top of the summit of Mt. Laguna (elevation: 5,777 ft) takes about an hour from downtown San Diego on the I-8E. Close to the summit are a couple of short (~1 mile), toddler friendly hikes:
- Desert View Interpretive Trail (pictured above) is a flat trail that offers great views of Anza Borrego Desert and the Salton Sea on a clear day
- Kwaaymii Interpretive Trail: another short loop, climbing a hill with decent views from the top
Lake Cuyamaca is situated along state highway 79 that runs N-S and about 10 miles west along the I-8 from the exit for Mt. Laguna. It’s possible to do some of these activities as a separate excursion or on the same day as a Mt. Laguna excursion:
- Azalea Glen Little Loop: 1.4 mile loop (stroller friendly) with picturesque wooden bridges and remains of burned trees that make for an interesting landscape. There are picnic tables and restrooms in the parking lot area, and benches about half way along the trail.
- Lake Cuyamaca Restaurant: A bit busy, but a decent option for sandwiches and burgers if you need to grab a bite. Overlooks Lake Cuyamaca.
- Los Caballos Trail: Another easy trail if you have time and energy left in the day!
Another option to wrap up the day is to drive back to San Diego via Julian and Santa Ysabel (~ 2 hours drive time) and stop by for some apple pie at the Julian Pie Company.
Make your trip planning fun and delightful with a little help from AI using Una!