9+ Things to Do in Coronado: Explore Unusual

Discover Coronado's secret tide pools where colorful marine life thrives; but what unexpected treasures does the low tide reveal? Dive in...
Date Published
March 8, 2024

Table of Contents

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Ever wondered if there's a place where the sun kisses the ocean in just the right way to make the tide pools glisten like a page from a fantasy novel? Yes, that place is real, and it's Coronado. Now, you might be thinking, "I've had my share of beaches," but hold your seahorses! Coronado isn't your run-of-the-mill stretch of sand. It's where the hidden treasures of the Pacific lie waiting in secret tide pools, and sunsets at Sunset Park paint the sky with colors you didn't even know existed.

Imagine setting up a picnic with that jaw-dropping backdrop or stumbling upon a piece of art so stunning, it stops you in your sandy tracks. This isn't just any island; it's an escape that offers everything from its whispering historic tales to thrilling ghost tours. But we're not sticking to the usual script here. Coronado is your stage for an adventure filled with local charm—from engaging with public art to itty-bitty theater productions that pack a punch. Buckle up, because we're diving into an ocean of activities that Coronado has stashed under its sunhat!

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Unearth the Secret Tide Pools of Coronado Beach

Picture this: You're strolling along the golden sands of Coronado Beach, the sun is just at that perfect angle where everything seems to glow, and then you spot something magical. Right there at your feet is a whole other world, a microcosm of marine life just waiting to be discovered in the secret tide pools!

Yes, tide pools at Coronado Beach are real, and they're spectacular. As you crouch down to get a closer look, you'll see hermit crabs scuttling, anemones waving their lazy tentacles, and if you're super lucky, you might even spot a starfish or two, acting all cool like the sea stars they are.

These pools form when the tide rolls out, leaving behind little pockets of ocean life in the rocky crevices. And the best part? Every tide pool is like a snowflake—unique, delicate, and ephemeral. So, how long should you spend exploring these natural wonders? Honestly, as much time as the tides will allow! Be sure to check a tide chart before you go so you hit the beach at low tide for the best tide pooling experience.

This serene spot is tailor-made for folks who incline toward the chill side of things. It's ideal for families teaching kiddos about the wonders of the ocean, curious solo travelers, or even couples looking for that quiet interlude in nature's embrace.

Now, you might be thinking, "Are there any hidden gems near these tide pools?" Well, that's where Coronado's magic comes in. You're steps away from scenic walks, local eateries, and that postcard-worthy Coronado shoreline that's beckoning you for a day-long adventure.

So if you're all about those unusual finds and making a splash (metaphorically, of course) into marine biology, throw on those water shoes and make a beeline for those tide pools. Dive into more details and tips on how to make the best of your tide pooling experience by checking out this nifty guide on exploring Coronado's tide pools. Go on, be the explorer you were born to be! 🦀✨

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Picnic with a View at Sunset Park

Picture this: You've got a basket loaded with your favorite snacks, a comfy blanket, and the sun dipping low on the horizon, painting the sky with shades of pink and orange. Yes, we're talking about a classic picnic, but not just any picnic—a sunset park picnic. And where better to indulge in this quintessential outdoor dining experience than at Sunset Park in Coronado?

So what's the scoop on Sunset Park? Well, it's small-town America with an oceanfront twist. Here's your game plan for a genuinely picturesque evening:

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  • Grab your picnic gear and head to Sunset Park.
  • Claim your spot on the grass; early birds get the worm, or in this case, the best view.
  • Lay out your feast as the sky puts on a show just for you.

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And it's not just pretty skies. Sunset Park offers an expanse of green that whispers, "Relax, stay a while." Kids laughing on the playground, dogs playing frisbee, and the collective ohh and ahh of fellow picnickers as the sun finally waves goodbye—this is the stuff of pure, simple joy.

This spot is a hit with families, friends, and couples looking for romance in the reds and golds of the sunset. Locals love it too, because really, who wouldn't? You want to budget a good hour or two here, especially if you're a fan of golden hour photography or just savoring moments that feel a little like magic.

Whether you're living the single life, wrangling a squad of youngsters, or out for an enchanting evening with your sweetheart, Sunset Park sets the stage for unforgettable memories. So let's add "epic picnic at sunset" to your Coronado to-do list, shall we?

And hey, after the stars come out to play, why not take a leisurely stroll? You're just a hop and a skip away from Coronado's quaint streets and ocean's whisper. Can you hear it calling? Sunset Park answers with an invitation to come and breathe in the end of another beautiful day.

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Delight in Coronado Island's Hidden Art Scene

Coronado may be known for its sparkling beaches and majestic Hotel del Coronado, but let me tell you about a colorful surprise that's flying under the radar: its vibrant hidden art scene. Now, you're probably wondering, "Where can I find art on Coronado Island?" Well, have you ever strolled through a park and suddenly been embraced by creativity? That's what art-in-the-park is all about!

Imagine this: you’re taking a breezy walk, the sun is gently kissing your face, and right there in Spreckels Park, you’re suddenly amidst an outdoor gallery. Local artists showcase their masterpieces under the Coronado sun, sharing their passion in every brushstroke. From whimsical sculptures to paintings that tell a thousand words, art-in-the-park events are where Coronado's artistic heart truly beats. You'll want to carve out a Sunday every month for this, as that's when these artful festivities turn the park into a canvas of imagination.

But wait, we're not done yet. As you meander down the avenues, keep your eyes peeled for the murals and public art sprinkled throughout the island. It's like a treasure hunt where the prize is a feast for your eyes! The Coronado Public Art Walking Tour lays out a path of discovery where each mural unfolds a story, and every sculpture unlocks a piece of island history.

Coronado is no ordinary island; it’s a place where art breathes, dances, and invites you to partake in its whimsy. Whether you're an art connoisseur or just love a good surprise around every corner, this scene is for you. It's perfect for singles, families, and everyone in between. It's not just a sightseeing stop; it’s an experience that connects you to the creative pulse of Coronado.

So grab your comfortable shoes and a curious spirit. Spend an afternoon—or as long as your heart desires—exploring the unique and enchanting world where art and island serenity meet. And trust me, whether you're clutching a newly purchased canvas or just memories etched in your mind, it's an art adventure that’s sure to add a splash of color to your visit.

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Discover Coronado's Haunted Happenings

Get ready to have the heebie-jeebies tickle your spine because Coronado isn't just sun, surf, and sand—it's a hotspot for ghost enthusiasts! You heard that right, we're diving into the haunted happenings in Coronado.

Imagine this: you're strolling through the iconic Hotel Del Coronado at dusk, the sky painted in eerie shades, feeling the chill from the sea and maybe… from the otherworldly. That's right, folks, that beautiful piece of architecture isn't just famous for its Victorian grandeur; it's rumored to have guests who've checked in but never checked out. We're talking about the legendary ghost tour at Hotel Del Coronado that's bound to send a shiver down your spine.

But why should you, brave explorer of the paranormal, consider this spooky excursion? Well, for starters:

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  • You’ll be walking in the footsteps of the legendary Kate Morgan, a guest whose spirit is said to linger around even after her mysterious death in 1892.
  • Vivid storytelling will transport you to a bygone era, complete with scandals and unexplained occurrences that have captivated curious minds for over a century.
  • This isn't just any ghost tour; it's a journey backed by actual historical events that have made Hotel Del Coronado a beacon for supernatural seekers.

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Expect to rub elbows with both the living and the possibly not-so-living residents. It's a year-round attraction that's particularly perfect for those crisp fall nights when the veil between worlds is paper-thin.

Will you spot an apparition in a corridor? Maybe catch a whisper from a long-gone guest? There's only one way to find out.

But, fair warning, this experience might just be too intense for the little ones or the faint of heart. However, if you've got the guts, this ghostly adventure is sure to be the talk of your trip. So come on. Indulge in a couple of hours of goosebumps before heading back to the land of the living. And who knows? You might just leave with your very own ghost story to tell.

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Explore the Lesser-Known Coronado Heritage Walk

Ready to step off the beaten path and into the heart of local history? The Coronado Heritage Walk is your ticket to a time-travel escapade. This isn't just any stroll; it's a journey through the Island's storied past, where the architecture whispers tales of yesteryear. Let me tell you, there's nothing like feeling the cool sea breeze as you amble past buildings that have seen more sunsets than any of us will in a lifetime.

Strolling through the Coronado Heritage Walk will have you face-to-face with charming Victorian homes that seem straight out of a storybook. Each structure, be it a quaint bungalow or a grandiose estate, holds a unique place in Coronado's mosaic of history. You'll want to allow yourself a good hour or two – trust me, you’ll want to take your time.

So, what's the appeal for families, singles, toddlers, anyone? Picture this: it's a place where history buffs can geek out, couples can meander hand-in-hand, and kiddos can race to the next historic marker. Every step is a chance to discover a new detail or imagine life in an era long gone. Plus, it's an excellent opportunity to stretch those legs. Health and history—a dynamic duo if ever there was one!

Don't forget to peek at the Heritage Walk plaques that mark each site. They're like little history textbooks but without the homework. You'll unearth intriguing facts about the pioneers who shaped this shimmering island paradise. And as you wander, the Coronado Bridge majestically stretches across the bay, reminding you that the modern world isn't too far away.

Like a treasure hunt for culture vultures, the Coronado Heritage Walk is an off-the-grid experience teeming with character. It's where every corner turned is a new chapter in a Coronado storybook that's waiting for you to read it. Go ahead, explorer, take that walk – your inner historian will high-five you for it!

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Enjoy Bayside Enchantment at Glorietta Bay Park

Imagine a place where the green of the grass hugs the blue of the bay. That's Glorietta Bay Park for you, a sparkling gem tucked away in the heart of Coronado. It's a place where you can kick back, suck in that salty bay air, and say to yourself, "Yep, life's good."

So, what's the scoop on Glorietta Bay Park? It's not your run-of-the-mill park, that's for sure. Here's what you need to know:

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  • Family-Friendly Vibes: Got kids? They'll go bananas for the playground. Got parents? There's plenty of lush lawn for a spectacular family picnic.
  • Stunning Views: Bring your camera, folks! This spot gives you a killer view of the Coronado Bridge, so snap away and make your friends back home jealous.
  • Get Active: With a boat ramp and a beach, you can splash around in the water or launch your own adventure.

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You only need a couple of hours to soak it all in, unless you can't tear yourself away from the perfect picnic you've laid out. And that's entirely possible, given the primo picnic spots all around.

Solo traveler, lovey-dovey couple, or a herd of kiddos—Glorietta Bay Park rolls out the welcome mat for all. Want more adrenaline? Rent a stand-up paddleboard and conquer the bay.

Oh, and before you dash off, stroll along the promenade. Breathe deep, admire the Coronado Yacht Club marina, and let yourself be charmed by the sailboats dancing on the water. For the full experience, you gotta check out the splendid Glorietta Bay Park's Grand Promenade.

So there you have it, folks! You can almost feel the gentle caress of the bay breeze on your face already, can't you? Remember, it's all about making memories, and believe me, Glorietta Bay Park is where the good ones are made.

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Experience Intimate Theater at Coronado Playhouse

Imagine diving into a world of drama, comedy, and romance, all unfolding just an arm's reach away. That's the magic at Coronado Playhouse, where intimate theater breathes life into every story. Here, Coronado Playhouse productions are more than shows; they're personal encounters with the art of storytelling.

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  • You'll forget the world outside as you're whisked away on an emotional journey.
  • The small setting means you're up close—so close you can see the actors' subtlest expressions.
  • Each performance, crafted for a smaller audience, makes you feel part of the narrative.

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Whether you're a theater buff or simply love a good story, the array of performances will have you coming back for more. This isn't just a play; it's an experience that wraps around you, making every scene, every line, more gripping. Even locals rave about the transformation after the curtain rises.

The Playhouse isn't just for the lover of the arts—it's perfect for a romantic evening or a thoughtful solo night out. Spend around two hours here and let the real world melt away. And the best part? It's nestled right in the heart of Coronado, easily accessible for a spontaneous night out.

And when the show's over, why end the night there? Step out into the balmy Coronado evening, grab a bite from a nearby café, or simply stroll under the stars, still feeling the buzz from a performance that felt like it was just for you.

It's not just a show at the Coronado Playhouse, it's where stories come alive and where you, for just a moment, become a part of the art. So embrace the call of the stage, and let yourself be captivated by raw talent in a space that feels like home.

Are you ready to snag a seat at the next showing? Just check-in here to join the audience. After all, every night is a new chance to live a different life at Coronado Playhouse—don't miss your cue!

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Shop Local at Coronado Farmers Market

Imagine strolling past colorful stalls where friendly locals showcase the freshest produce and unique handmade goods—it's Tuesday, and you're at the Coronado Farmers Market. This open-air market unfolds a feast for your senses, bursting with ripe fruits, earthy veggies, and vibrant flowers that seem to dance as you wander by.

You're in the heart of Coronado, mixing it up with savvy residents who value the 'farm to table' mantra. Here's the scoop: this farmers market is a haven for foodies and a gold mine for any chef looking for top-notch, locally sourced ingredients. And let's be real, even if you've got the culinary skills of a toaster oven, who doesn't love to nosh on the freshest seasonal delights?

Let's talk specifics: you'll find the market at the Ferry Landing, overlooking the sparkling San Diego skyline. Now, ain't that a picture-perfect backdrop for your artisanal cheese and bread? Go ahead, pick up some homemade salsa, just-baked pastries, and maybe a jar of local honey. You deserve it.

Oh, and if you're into the crafty scene, this market isn't just about stuffing your face with deliciousness. You'll find hand-crafted jewelry, unique soaps, and artsy knick-knacks perfect for that spot on your shelf back home.

So, how long should you hang out? A couple of hours should do the trick, but who's counting when you're immersed in such a fabulous community vibe? It’s an experience that's ideal for anyone—whether you’re solo, tagging along with your sweetheart, or herding a group of tiny humans. There's something about the Coronado Farmers Market that feels like a sweet little celebration of life—and guess what? You're invited.

Before you go, make sure to check their schedule on their official website, since you wouldn't want to miss out on this quaint local gathering. Trust me, it’s those small moments, tasting, laughing, and shopping amidst the sea breeze that will stick with you long after your trip is over.

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Cruise Around the Island with Coronado Trolley Tour

Jump aboard the Coronado Trolley Tour and whisk your way around this dreamy island with breeze in your hair and the sunshine on your face. You're not just riding, darling - you're sightseeing in style! Picture it: You're cruising past the historic Hotel del Coronado, spying swanky mansions, and giving a queen's wave to the sparkling San Diego skyline across the bay. Oh, and those ocean views? Chef's kiss!

This isn't just a sit-and-stare kind of tour. Bring your curiosity and your camera because every corner of Coronado has a story, and this trolley is ready to spill the tea. Expect to devote a good chunk of your day soaking up the sights – but trust me, it's worth every second. Also, it's perfect for every kind of traveler! Families? Check. Couples looking for romance? Double check. Solo adventurers? You bet!

And once you hop off, you’re perfectly poised to explore even more. Just a stone's throw away from the drop-off spots, you've got local cafes and shops that are begging for a visit. So, grab a bite or a trinket, and when you're ready, hop on the next trolley that’ll whiz by.

Even the locals love this jaunt because who doesn't enjoy seeing their city from a fresh point of view? So wear your most comfortable shoes and the biggest smile you've got — we're taking Coronado by storm, one trolley ding at a time. Now, are you ready to ride? Check out Coronado Trolley Tour for more deets and to snag your seat!

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Embrace the Outdoors with Biking on Coronado Island

Biking on Coronado Island isn't just a pastime; it's an absolute must-do! Imagine the salty sea breeze in your hair, the sun-kissed paths stretching before you, and the iconic San Diego skyline to your side. Yes, your biking adventure here is drenched in California dreams!

You might wonder, "What's so special about biking here?" Well, the whole island is practically a picturesque postcard waiting to be explored on two wheels. With dedicated bike paths and scores of scenic routes, you're in for a treat whether you're a seasoned cyclist or someone who hasn't pedaled in years.

Here's the best part: you don't need to bring your bike from home. There are plenty of rental spots where you can snag a cruiser for the day. And don't stress about where to go; you’ve got choices aplenty. Wheel your way to the Coronado Ferry Landing for a view that'll knock your socks off, or take the Bayshore Bikeway to bask in the beauty of the coastal line.

Just how long should you plan to pedal around paradise? While you can easily spend an entire day exploring, even a short ride will immerse you in the laid-back Coronado vibe. And who's this ride perfect for? Everyone! Solo explorers, lovebirds on a tandem bike, families with kiddo carriers in tow – you name it.

What's nearby? Well, pedal off the beaten path, and you may find yourself at a quiet beach or a quaint café. Your adventure is what you make it. And believe me, once you hit those paths, you'll understand why biking on Coronado Island is more than just exercise - it's a slice of the Southern California lifestyle.

So, click on those helmets and get ready to make memories. And hey, who knows? You might just discover your new favorite spot or a hidden gem along the way. It's not just a ride; it's a journey – and it starts with you on a bike, soaking in every vibrant detail of Coronado Island!

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Stroll Amongst Coronado's Historic Homes and Mansions

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Imagine stepping back in time as you meander down the charming streets of Coronado, where each home tells a story and every mansion holds a secret from a bygone era. Yes, you're in the heart of Coronado's historic residential district, and it's easy to see why both locals and visitors fall head over heels for the grandeur and old-world charm.

Wandering through these tree-lined streets, it's like the modern world takes a pause. Each of Coronado’s historic homes and mansions is a masterpiece with meticulously maintained gardens that bloom with every shade imaginable. And let's be real, who doesn't love a good garden?

But what’s so special here? Aside from feeling like you've just stepped onto a movie set, you're walking through living history. These aren't just any old houses; they're testimonies to the island’s rich past, standing proud and telling tales of the days when Coronado began to blossom.

Now, let me set the scene: the glow of the evening sun casting amber light on intricate Victorian facades as you stroll with your favorite people...or hey, enjoying your own fabulous company. And guess what? You don't need a time machine for this experience!

Some of these gems date back to the 19th century, folks. We're talking about real architectural treasures here. With every step, you spot something unique, from Queen Anne cottages to grand estates that make you feel like royalty. It's a kaleidoscope of styles and stories that could keep a conversation going for hours.

And if you're wondering whether this is a hit for the young, the restless, or the eternally young at heart? It's a resounding yes for all. Families, couples, and even solo explorers find joy in this picturesque promenade.

Don't forget to have your camera ready because you'll want to remember this! Plan for an hour or so; it's not a race, it's a treasure hunt on foot. And the best part? This stroll doesn't cost a dime.

So, ready for a slice of Coronado that's both luxurious and, dare we say, timeless? Click here to embark on this serene journey amongst the grand dames of architectural beauty in Coronado. Let's make memories amongst mansions!

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Relax with Yoga on the Beach

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Imagine this: you're on the soft sands of Coronado Beach, the gentle sound of waves lapping against the shore soothing your senses. This is not your average yoga studio. Oh no, this is yoga on the beach, where every deep breath comes with a fresh ocean breeze and every pose is under the vast, blue sky.

You don't have to be a yogi master to join in. Whether you've done it a thousand times or your body's as flexible as a two-by-four, this beachfront yoga is for everyone. That's right, everyone! Bring the kids, drag your significant other, or round up your friends – it's a hit for all ages and all levels. Here's the breakdown:

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  • Classes happen regularly, so you'll find one that fits your vacay schedule.
  • It's a vibe here, so expect to feel more zen than a monastery.
  • You're smack dab on the beach, so take a dip post-savasana. Trust me, it's divine.

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When the sun sets, and you're flowing through a warrior pose, the sky paints a picture so stunning, you'll swear you're in a postcard. It's the golden hour, baby, and it's all the backdrop you need.

Yoga on Coronado Beach isn't just an activity; it's an experience. Pack plenty of sunscreens, a towel or mat, and some water. You're about to align your chakras with the rhythm of the ocean. Classes typically last an hour – just the right amount of time to feel rejuvenated without cutting into your beach lounging or sunset-watching.

And guess what? The beach is lined with eateries and shops, so after you're done being all mindful and stretchy, you can treat yourself to some local delights. Hungry? Thirsty? Coronado's got you covered.

Cap off your seaside stretch fest with something cool and sweet, perhaps a local ice cream right there by the beach. Your body and soul will thank you.__));

Now tell me, does life get any better than yoga on the beach? I think not. Namaste, my friends, namaste.

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FAQ

Q: Free things to do in Coronado Island?

A: Stroll on Coronado Beach, visit Centennial Park, walk around Downtown Coronado, and don't miss the Coronado Ferry Landing for stunning views. All for zero bucks!

Q: Things to do in Coronado today?

A: Check out local event calendars for Coronado—there's always something happening, from markets to concerts!

Q: Unique things to do in Coronado Island?

A: Take a guided tour of the historic Hotel del Coronado, or paddleboard in Glorietta Bay for a unique perspective of the island.

Q: Things to do in Coronado Island at night?

A: Grab a beach blanket for a cozy bonfire, enjoy night-time dining with ocean views, or catch a play at Lamb's Players Theatre.

Q: Things to do in Coronado this weekend?

A: Hit the local farmers market, bike the Silver Strand, or catch a film at the vintage Village Theater.

Q: Things to do in Coronado Island with kids?

A: The island is kid-friendly with Tidelands Park for play, beach days for sun, and the Coronado Public Library for story time.

Q: How do I spend a day in Coronado?

A: You can have breakfast at a café, sunbathe on the beach, shop at boutiques, and end with a seaside dinner. It's a day well-spent!

Q: Is it worth visiting Coronado Island?

A: Absolutely! With its picturesque beaches, historic sites, and laid-back vibe, Coronado Island is a must-visit.

Q: Why is Coronado Island famous?

A: Coronado is known for its iconic Hotel del Coronado, beautiful beaches, and as a resort city with a rich history.

Q: What is the Del Coronado famous for?

A: The Hotel del Coronado is famous for its stunning Victorian architecture, celebrity visitors, and being the backdrop for movies like "Some Like It Hot."

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Final Words

Alright, you've just taken a whirlwind tour of Coronado's gems, from the mystery-shrouded tide pools to the compelling art scene. We've picnicked, ghost-hunted, strolled through history, and oh so much more. I hope you're pumped with ideas galore.

Your adventure doesn't end here, though. There's still a world of activities waiting just for you in Coronado's sunny embrace. So go ahead, make some wild memories. And when you're ready for more, remember, the best things to do in Coronado are the ones that leave you with stories to tell!

Meet the Author
Aria Ohlsson
Aria Ohlsson, the Instagram storyteller extraordinaire, takes you on adventures through her enchanting narratives. An avid hiker, she scales peaks and weaves tales of mountaintop triumphs. When she's not conquering trails, you'll find her immersed in classic novels, finding inspiration for her next tale.
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