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Visitors Center: Your Last Stop for Last-Minute Gifts

Huggy the holiday shopping hamsterHuggy writes: Dear Cosmos, I’ve been running around like a hamster on coffee trying to buy last-minute gifts for everyone in my horde, but I’m just about gassed. What stores in Balboa Park offer the most variety and bang for my cabbage?

Cosmos: After switching to decaf, you should tunnel your way to the Balboa Park Visitors Center as the next stop on your holiday shopping spree. No, I’m not suggesting you go there to pick up brochures to shred for your burrow. Rather, you should go see for yourself what makes the Visitors Center ideal for last-minute, one-stop shopping.

Your Source for Locally Sourced

It’s only natural that the Balboa Park Visitors Center would specialize in gifts highlighting Balboa Park and San Diego as a destination in the form of trinkets, guide books, and apparel, such as this fetching T-shirt of the park’s famous Moreton Bay Fig Tree. (I like big trees and I cannot lie.)

Balboa Park Visitors Center, Moreton Bay fig tree t-shirt

What may surprise many shoppers is all the other stuff sold there, including locally made (and soon-to-be locally consumed) peanut butter and jams, locally made soaps, as well as locally made ornaments and home décor pieces.

Visitors Center, local peanut butter and jam selection


A Fairy Good Place for Gifts for Pups

The Visitors Center also offers a wide assortment of gifts for everyone in your litter, including kids T-shirts, cute animal coin purses, and all things fairy not licensed by Disney. One section of the store features all the fixings for a fairytale wonderland, including fairy figurines of all shapes and sizes, woodland creatures, gnomes, and the little homes they inhabit.

Visitors Center, Fairy figurine dispaly


And the My Fairy Garden kit lets budding horticulturalists grow their own magical lily pond for their fairies to sprinkle with pixie dust.

Visitors Center, My Fairy Garden Playset, Lily Pond

The Wind Beneath Your Chimes

But who are we kidding? This is San Diego, where sipping iced beverages on the patio with your four-legged friends is a year-round activity. The Visitors Center has you covered here as well, with gifts that enhance any garden setting, including a vast assortment of ornate windchimes and one-of-a-kind humming bird feeders.

Visitors Center, Windchime display

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