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6 Unique Activities to Try in North County to Crank Life up a Notch

swim with otters valley center

Let’s crank life up a notch! If you’re growing tired of the same old, same old, give one of the below activities a try for a taste of something new and exciting.

1. Swim with Otters

We’ve all heard of swimming with dolphins, but what’s this? Swimming with otters is a thing, too? Indeed it is, and so popular at Valley Center’s Nurtured by Nature that all of 2017 is already scheduled with otter lovers. Check the website often for cancellations, or try to schedule some otter time in 2018 (which will be available soon). You’ll get three hours in a pool with Asian Small Clawed Otters, and have the opportunity to interact with other amazing creatures at Nurtured by Nature, such as a kangaroo, sloth, armadillo, porcupine, lemurs and more. The age limit for otter swimming is 18 and up, so keep that in mind. 

2. Free Run

Ever hear of parkour? It’s the sport of moving quickly over obstacles, typically in an urban environment. Think action movies where the hero jumps from rooftop to rooftop. Freerunning is similar, in that runners learn how to move over obstacles, climb walls and flip over bars in an epic fun and creative workout. Tempest Freerunning Academy, located in a Vista industrial park, is a facility where people can learn the basics of parkour and the advanced tricks of freerunning in a safe indoor space. Tempest offers a variety of classes and open gym times for ages 4 to 17-plus. Beginner classes are also offered if you want to dip your toe then flip headfirst into the freerunning world.

3. Hike Annie’s Trail

This cult favorite with hikers was closed for a good amount of time. Recently reopened after restoration, this slot canyon – a narrow passage through rock and canyon – once again welcomes visitors. Rife with steep switchbacks and views that’ll leave you gobsmacked, Annie’s Canyon Trail is a fairly strenuous quarter-mile loop through sandstone walls and narrow corridors. All in all, the trail is deeper than wide and it’s a must hike if you’re into nature.

4. Float in a Sensory Deprivation Tank

Stress getting to you? Blot it out with a session or two at Float North County. Listen to this: you’ll lay atop warm water filled with more than 1,000 pounds of dissolved Epsom salts that keep you afloat. Stay suspended in this state of semi-sensory deprivation for an hour or so, which reportedly stimulates your body’s deep relaxation response. Some people float to relieve stress, reduce anxiety, and eliminate chronic pain, by floating and allowing muscles to fully release for rest and recovery.

5. Take to a Trapeze

This Escondido trapeze and circus arts school welcomes people of all ages, abilities and skill levels to fly through the air with the greatest of ease. Schedule a session and you’ll learn trapeze safety techniques, then graduate to take-off positions, knee hangs, and catching. All goes well, and you’ll be jumping from the platform, swinging gracefully and doing tricks in no time.

6. Try a Pop-Up Dinner

Pop-up dinners happen in ever-changing locations. That’s how it is with Culinary Hedonism’s Supper Club, where up to 12 diners break bread together over a 6-8-course tasting menu paired with wine, beer, and spirits. RSVP for upcoming dinners (listed on their website) and get ready for a truly unique experience. Seating is limited to 12 people total and offered on a reservation-only basis. 

Your Turn…

What do you do to add zest to your everyday?

Debbie Anderson: Debbie is a freelance writer and editor who’s been blogging at San Diego Momma since 2007. Debbie's been featured in Writer's Digest, the San Diego Reader, and San Diego Magazine, and was named Top 25 blog by Red Tricycle, nominated for an InfluenceSD "Best in Lifestyle" blog award, and appeared on NBC, Fox, and The CW Network as a blogger spokesperson. You can connect with her on LinkedIn or at Google+.