Liberty Station

Liberty Station in San Diego became a go-to location for us to take adventures, especially during COVID in 2020. It has retail, restaurants, art galleries, and a public market on the grounds of a former naval training center, which does not sound like the best place for an adventure. But there is a hidden gem; Liberty NTC Park and a trail along San Diego Bay that leads to Spanish Landing and Cancer Survivor’s Park.

To get to the trail, we typically park on Cushing Street near Dewey Road and a restroom. From there we follow the sidewalk to the water, passing large grassy fields (Liberty NTC Park). Near the water there is a paved sidewalk that parallels a dirt trail. We always followed the dirt trail so Karlie could chase the squirrels and be closer to the water. In one area there is a spot to get down to a small beach, which we often did. You do have to watch out for loose dogs, but there is plenty of space to create some distance, if needed.

The dirt trail ends near the Hilton/Homewood Suites, but the sidewalk continues over Nimitz Bridge to Spanish Landing Trail. A short distance from the bridge is another restroom and a beach and playground. As the trail continues it goes past Spanish Landing Park to Cancer Survivor’s Park. We always enjoyed this walk because it gives a nice view of the city, including some amazing boats docked at the marina. Karlie also loved that she could get her toes wet.

Enjoying the water at Spanish Landing.

Not only did we walk at Liberty Station, but we also got out on the water with our SUP board and kayak. To do this we parked near Kanaka Landing where there is a boat launch. We paddled along the shore, under Nimitz Bridge, and into the harbor. The view of the city and harbor are just as stunning from the water. Our last trip with Karlie on the SUP board was January 2022. It was a great day and we were looking forward to returning, but sadly her health diminished shortly afterwards.

Liberty Station
Entering the harbor with Captain Karlie.

To read more about our adventures to Liberty Station and many other places in San Diego, check out our book Adventures with Karlie. Also check out our other San Diego Hiking Blogs.

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