Balboa Park

Visitor Information

Thanks to the foresight of its early settlers, San Diego is blessed with an oasis of green that functions as its recreational heart.  Balboa Park, located just east of downtown and the airport began as an 1,400 acre track set aside as a public park in 1865.  The first master plan was prepared in 1903 and the city levied a tax in 1905 to support the master plan.  The grounds were planted by Kate Sessions during the early part of the 20th century.  Her determination to keep San Diego green can be seen in its lush plantings and trees.

Many of the buildings in the park date to the 1915-1916 Panama-California Exposition and are excellent examples of the Spanish Colonial Revival style.  At the time the buildings were not intended for permanent use, but they have remained in constant use since the Exposition.  In recent years as termites and time have taken their toll buildings are being refurbished or rebuilt as exact replicas. The site was also the host of the 1935-36 California-Pacific International Exposition.

More Visitor Information

Balboa Park Businesses

San Diego Economic Consultants

1516 W Redwood St., Ste. 212
San Diego, CA
  • Economics
  • Financial Planning & Services

KTU+A Planning + Landscape Architecture

3916 Normal St.
San Diego, CA
  • Architect - Consultants
  • Land Planning
  • Landscape Architects
  • Landscape Design
  • Landscape Installation
  • Landscape Maintenance & Construction
  • Transportation Planning
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Movie Theaters

1788 El Prado
San Diego, CA, 92101
701 Fifth Ave.
San Diego, CA, 92101
3965 5th Ave. #200
San Diego, CA, 92103
1649 El Prado
San Diego, CA, 92101
1875 El Prado
San Diego, CA, 92101

To find a movie theater outside this area, check the Source Movie Section.

Upcoming Events

Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography

Fri, Oct 31
San Diego Central Library/Joan & Irwin Jacobs Comm
San Diego
– Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography gathers eight of San Diego’s most talented photographers who are exploring the creative boundaries of photography. Each of the artists included in this exhibition (Andy Cross, Amanda Dahlgren, Judith Fox, John Brinton Hogan, Michael Mulno, Han Nguyen, Scott Polach, and Rebecca Webb) live and work in the San Diego region, adding to the cultural vibrancy of our community. . A reception sponsored by the Friends of the Central Library is planned for Saturday, September 6, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. The exhibition and reception are open to the public and admission is free.

Gauquin to Warhol 20th Century Icons

Fri, Oct 31
San Diego Museum of Art
San Diego
The exhibition is a who’s who of the art world, with monumental works from Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keeffe, Salvador Dalí, Frida Kahlo, Paul Gauguin, Francis Bacon, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock, among others. This is the only West Coast stop for this exhibition, which features 70+ works from the renowned collection from the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, N.Y., and covers modern movements from Post-Impressionism to Pop.

Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography

Sat, Nov 1
San Diego Central Library/Joan & Irwin Jacobs Comm
San Diego
– Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography gathers eight of San Diego’s most talented photographers who are exploring the creative boundaries of photography. Each of the artists included in this exhibition (Andy Cross, Amanda Dahlgren, Judith Fox, John Brinton Hogan, Michael Mulno, Han Nguyen, Scott Polach, and Rebecca Webb) live and work in the San Diego region, adding to the cultural vibrancy of our community. . A reception sponsored by the Friends of the Central Library is planned for Saturday, September 6, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. The exhibition and reception are open to the public and admission is free.

Gauquin to Warhol 20th Century Icons

Sat, Nov 1
San Diego Museum of Art
San Diego
The exhibition is a who’s who of the art world, with monumental works from Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keeffe, Salvador Dalí, Frida Kahlo, Paul Gauguin, Francis Bacon, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock, among others. This is the only West Coast stop for this exhibition, which features 70+ works from the renowned collection from the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, N.Y., and covers modern movements from Post-Impressionism to Pop.

Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography

Sun, Nov 2
San Diego Central Library/Joan & Irwin Jacobs Comm
San Diego
– Hiding in Plain Sight: Eight Voices in Contemporary Photography gathers eight of San Diego’s most talented photographers who are exploring the creative boundaries of photography. Each of the artists included in this exhibition (Andy Cross, Amanda Dahlgren, Judith Fox, John Brinton Hogan, Michael Mulno, Han Nguyen, Scott Polach, and Rebecca Webb) live and work in the San Diego region, adding to the cultural vibrancy of our community. . A reception sponsored by the Friends of the Central Library is planned for Saturday, September 6, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. The exhibition and reception are open to the public and admission is free.
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