Liberty Station: Insider’s Guide to What’s New

Liberty Station San Diego Insiders Guide Aimee Della Bitta
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Liberty Station is officially hitting its stride, making it the perfect spot to revisit for your next family field trip. The Point Loma destination is an ideal place to show your little San Diegans a piece of history ⁠—the station itself was once a Naval Training Center dating back to 1923. Today, the same spot is an exciting urban village, home to the ARTS DISTRICT, Liberty Public Market, a slew of new restaurants, shops, and plenty of green space for kids to run and play. Here’s a breakdown of what to do, where to eat, and what to see while you’re exploring Liberty Station with kids.

Liberty Station: Where to Eat

Over the last few years, Liberty Station gained a new set of restaurants. These new eateries are more unique than the original anchor tenants that helped launch the revamped historic neighborhood. Bringing in these San Diego distinct spots that appeal to visitors and locals alike has brought an influx of activity to the area. Here are our picks for the most family-friendly food spots that offer something you can't find anywhere else. 

Liberty Public Market
Although the public market launched in 2016, it's recently added specialty vendors that brighten the halls. Picky eaters (and their parents) can officially rejoice. There are more than 30 food vendors that are willing and able to satisfy all palates. The best thing about a food emporium like Liberty Public Market is that everyone doesn’t have to order from the same spot. The market offers everything from lobster sandwiches to house-made pasta and even has a great selection of wine and cheese. We highly recommend finishing your meal with something sweet like a mini-donut or two. The outdoor seating area has plenty of space for kids to move around and burn off any sugar highs. 

2820 Historic Decatur Rd
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: libertypublicmarketsd.com/

Officine Bueno Forchetta 
Bueno Forchetta's flagship location in South Park is often hailed as the best pizza in town so it's no surprise that their Liberty Station opening was highly anticipated and welcomed. The Italian restaurant delivers, offering families their very own seating complete with a playground and secure space to romp while parents enjoy another slice of pie. The waitstaff is ultra Italian, and their accents might make you feel like you jetted off on a European vacation. There's even an actual Fiat convertible that’s been turned into a two-top (diners sit in the back seat) and it can be reserved for special occasions. 

2865 Sims Road
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: buonaforchettasd.com/officine-buona-forchetta/

Go Go Amigo
Need a staycation? Snag a table at the newly opened Go Go Amigo. The south-of-the-border inspired restaurant and bar is bright, colorful and fun! The outdoor seating is great for families and while they don't have any kid-specific menu items, the beef tacos and chicken grill cheese will hit the spot. 

2885 Perry Rd
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: gogoamigosd.com/

Stone Brewing Company
Highlighted in our roundup of best San Diego restaurants to bring your toddler, Stone Brewing Company is the perfect spot to stop and eat while exploring Liberty Station. The expansive restaurant features indoor and outdoor dining and bars, as well as a bocce ball court, outdoor cinema space and garden. Their menu has a small kids offering including cheeseburgers, grill cheese and chicken strips. We'd suggest trying the Stone Mac and Cheese too. Adults will love the double crunch Korean fried chicken sandwich or the chicken tinga tacos; pair it with their tangerine express hazy IPA or the salt & lime lager for a twist. This spot is a great place to bring friends and family visiting from out of town.

2816 Historic Decatur Rd #116
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: stonebrewing.com/visit/bistros/liberty-station

Breakfast Republic
Known for its flight of pancakes, Breakfast Republic is the ideal spot to hit before you set off to explore Liberty Station. 

2865 Sims Rd#106
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: www.breakfastrepublic.com/

Corvette Diner
With poodle skirts, pinball machines and a lively arcade, you'll find this a perfect family date night spot. Not only are the shakes scrumptious, but your kids will also enjoy their crazy straw hair and the fun fifties tunes. On one hand, swing in for a mid-day frosty treat or on the other, cruise the dinner scene. Make sure to save a few dollars for the awesome arcade!

2965 Historic Decatur Rd
San Diego, CA 92106
Online: cohnrestaurants.com/corvettediner

 

Liberty Station: What to Do

Hot Spot:
Get creative and have fun while in this family-friendly pottery and candle-making studio where anyone can be artistic. The Hot Spot offers hundreds of pottery items such as picture frames, pasta bowls, dinnerware, flower vases and kids items galore. It’s also the only place in San Diego to offer chunky candle making. Kiddos choose the shape and fragrance they want, and the knowledgeable Hot Spot staff shows you the rest.

Online: thehotspotstudio.com

Kid Ventures:
This indoor play space makes kiddos feel like they’re walking into their favorite storybook where they get to be a hero. You’ll love the fact it’s a safe creative indoor play space, where parents enjoy a few perks too. From markets, fire engines and castles to drop-off playtime and tasty coffee, this tot spot rocks for the whole family. If you're looking for a place to drop off your kiddo, check out their Kids Night Out options. 

Online: kidventures.com

Monkier General
A delight to the senses, this retail and community concept is so well curated. Whether you pop in to browse the shop or grab a cup of coffee to go, don't be surprised if you stay longer than expected. 

Online: monikergeneral.com/

San Diego Craft Collective
Choose to take a class with your child or sign him up to take a workshop on his own. San Diego Craft Collective has everything from woodworking, sewing, papercraft, jewelry making and more. They also have a great selection for kids all of ages, including teens. Don't miss the free kid craft on the first Friday of every month from 5 pm- 6 pm, or sign up for a summer camp.

Online: sandiegocraft.org/calendar/

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Liberty Station: What to See

Apt 4 Music
Come join Apt 4 Music as they showcase their student performances, as well as bands, jams and the arts every month as part of Arts District Liberty Station's First Fridays. You can also check their website to find more information about booking lessons for your little musician. 

Online: apt4music.org/home

Art Installations
Liberty Station Public art is a great way to explore the ARTS DISTRICT.  Now you can join a fun interactive tour of the public art pieces through a scavenger hunt.  Simply scan the QR code at any of the public art pieces to begin your adventure.  Once you have completed the hunt, you will be eligible to receive a prize and several discounts from participating tenants.  Begin your adventure at any of the public art pieces.  There are currently 12 installations (and more in the works). Visit NTC Foundation for all the details and to learn more about the works of art. 

U.S.S. Neversail
This naval ship, located in the South Point area of the neighborhood, earned its nickname of “U.S.S. Neversail” because it has never seen the open seas. An exact replica of what sailors could expect out on the ocean, the vessel remained on land for military training exercises.

Names of Military Heros
All of the streets at Liberty Station are named after military heroes. For instance, Truxtun Road, one of the main roads of Liberty Station, is named after Thomas Truxtun, one of the first six commanders appointed to the new U.S. Navy by President George Washington. Need a fun game? Walkthrough the station with phone in hand to google each military hero’s story as you go.

RELATED STORIES:
San Diego’s Best Parks and Playgrounds
It’s a Date: 14 Spots for Your Family Date Night
Best Restaurants to Bring Your Tots in San Diego

 

 

 

 

 

 

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