Kids Free San Diego: Deal-Filled October

Visit dozens of museums and attractions with your tykes (and save a bundle).

San Diego Zoo Global/Ken Bohn

GATHER THE FAMILY... in the den, or the kitchen, or on the patio, or wherever it is that you hold your official household meetings, and put this question to everyone present: "If we were to go to San Diego in October, what would you like to see?" After the question is asked, best grab your nearest piece of paper, or recorder, because the suggestions will start to fly. After all, America's Finest City has a world-famous zoo, and world-famous beaches, and oodles of other pretty places known around the planet, and alighting on just one or two must-dos can be as challenging as gathering the whole brood in one spot for a quick meeting. But alight you should, if you're a fan of A) neato stuff to do and B) neato stuff to do where the discounts are plentiful. For October is Kids Free San Diego, a month-long deal-filled festivity where attractions, restaurants, hotels, and more either greatly reduce a child's admission or meal or stay or...

WAIVE THE FEE ALTOGETHER: For example? If you swing by the San Diego Natural History Museum, your child (age 12 and under) is admitted for free (and that goes for two kids per paid adult). A number of institutions have similar offers afoot, while several hotel restaurants have "eat free" deals for the tots (again, there are some asterisks, so brush up before booking). As for the perennial kids favorite, LEGOLAND California? You got it: It's on the list, offering "(o)ne complimentary Child Ticket with each Adult Ticket." There's some studying up to do, and perhaps some mapping, too, before you call the family to the patio to discuss and weigh in on what would be the coolest to-dos to pursue. The big picture, though? This long-running large-scale program, which encompasses well over a hundred spots around San Diego and its environs, is a solid way to get a few family days in while saving money.

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