Bugging Out at the San Diego Botanic Garden Ladybug & Insect Festival
On Saturday, my aunt, Mia, and I celebrated a girl’s day out by trekking out to the San Diego Botanic Garden’s Annual Ladybug & Insect Festival, and it was definitely a bug lover’s dream come true. We had such a fantastic time and got to see tons of creepy crawlies including live lizards, snakes and the famed Madagascar hissing cockroaches.
You may recall that last month, we visited SDBG for the annual Fairy Festival, and instead of a fairy costume, this time Mia chose to dress up like a bumble bee, appropriate for the day’s festivities.
The Seeds of Wonder Children’s Garden at the San Diego Botanic Garden is still one of the best children’s garden I have ever visited! It really never disappoints and while not as elaborate as the Fairy Festival, the interactive insect arts and crafts set up in the Garden were definitely one of the day’s highlights.
After, we painted a ladybug rock and made a butterfly from a coffee filter and clothespin, we visited the main area inside where we were surrounded by every kind of insect imaginable. From scorpions, tomato worms, bumble bees, ladybugs, to ants, spiders and more, we were able to get up close with these live creatures encased in specimen bottles.
Outside the pavilion, we met all different kinds of snakes and lizards. To my surprise, Mia took (a little too much) to a giant lizard known as a Tegu, petting its head and tail, and basically loving it like it was her pet. The garden's giant Galapagos tortoise Sam also made an appearance.
One of my favorite parts of the day was meeting a Fennec Fox (though not sure how he fit into the theme). Mia and I love foxes, so to see one up close outside a cage was a real treat!
There were also more than 20 educational booths with information and entertainment for all ages, and local bug experts were on hand to answer questions. Visitors could also purchase ladybug houses, local honey, and garden plants. There was even a booth where you could taste cooked mealworm larva, in various flavors including mesquite, teriyaki and barbecue, but we were too chicken to try them.
Of course, we couldn’t pass up a visit to our favorite bookstore: Cultivating the Curious Usborne bookstore. We purchased two more Usborne books to add to our growing collection. If you haven’t discovered these books yet, I cannot recommend them enough – Mia absolutely loves them. We were able to find a shady spot where we ended our day at the Ladybug and Insect Festival reading our favorite series with a cold lemonade.
If you are planning a trip to the San Diego area next year or a local family with little ones, be sure to check out the Ladybug and Insect Festival. It will be a day your little bug lovers won’t soon forget!