I have lived in San Diego County for 26 years and it amazes me the amount of things there are to do all year round due to the mild weather. I try and get out to see as much as possible so when I had visitors looking for seashells to purchase and bring back home I remembered the shell store in La Jolla that I have passed by so many times but never actually visited. I decided to research it for my visitors and to my amazement the store not only had shells but is home to the ONLY land access sea cave on the California Coastline!
La Jolla has 7 sea caves and the Sunny Jim Cave is the only one that is accessible by land. The others are only accessible by sea. You enter the Cave Store on Coast Blvd in La Jolla where they charge a minimal entrance fee of $4 per adult and $3 per child to enter the tunnel. The ceilings are low and there are 147 steps down to the actual cave. Once you reach the bottom it is breathtaking. The darkness of the cave is offset by the opening to the beautiful bright blue seas of La Jolla. We saw kayakers, swimmers, sea lions, and Girabaldi while we were there. It was a great way to spend 20 minutes or so. Once at the bottom also check out the different colors in the rock formations. Mineral deposits have colored the rocks in deep reds, grays and yellows.
The cave opening to the sea resembles an old cartoon character created by Frank Baum of the Wizard of Oz called "Sunny Jim". He was the mascot for a British Wheat cereal product in the 1920's. It really is amazing how similar the cartoon characters is to the opening!
So, whether you live in San Diego or are planning to visit, put this on your MUST SEE list! The La Jolla Sunny Jim Cave only takes a short amount of time and you will be glad you did it. Once you are done check out the store and pick up some souveniers to bring home. Then take a stroll down Coast Blvd and enjoy the gorgeous sea, sea life, restaurants and shopping and sunshine!
Visit The Cave Store for more directions and store hours.