Ultimate Guide to Enjoying a Day at the San Diego County Fair

Created: 07 June, 2018
Last update: 27 July, 2022

By Andrea Lopez-Villafaña

The San Diego County Fair until July 4. Andrea Lopez-Villafaña/La Prensa San Diego

The San Diego County Fair has returned to the Del Mar Fairgrounds and La Prensa San Diego spent opening day finding the best food, rides, and attractions for our readers.

This year’s theme “How sweet it is,” allows children and adults to indulge in their candy shop dreams. From the decorations to the food vendors, guest feel like they have walked into Willy Wonka’s imagination.

Of course, every fair experience is different, so we have created a list of things to do and try, tailored to families, friends, and couples visiting the fair.

Family Fun and Finding Great Deals

A day at the fair is a great way to keep the little ones entertained, however, the cost of taking the whole family can add up. Here are some tips that will make it easier for the whole family to enjoy the day without breaking the bank.

  • Enter La Prensa San Diego’s San Diego County Fair ticket giveaway by visiting our social media pages. We will be giving away a pair of tickets to readers who follow the instructions on our Facebook and Instagram accounts next week. Follow us @laprensasd.
  • Search the deals and discounts page of the San Diego County Fair website. You’ll find season passes, group sales, and discounted days for professionals in different fields.
  • Visit Fiesta Village located in Family Funville. This area in the fairgrounds is heavily influenced with Latin-themed decorations, food, and entertainment. The colorful decorations and music will provide the perfect family experience and pop-up shops with vendors from different countries in Latin America provide the opportunity to dive into different cultures.

Group or Couple Trips

  • Parking at the fair can be overwhelming especially, sitting in traffic at the main gate, however, if you are going to the fair with a group of friends it might be better to opt for preferred parking. Preferred parking is closer to the fair’s entrance and if you split the cost of $25 among a group will make it worth avoiding the long lines at the main gate and easier to go home after spending a long day at the fair. Make sure to avoid the main gate and continue down Jimmy Duarte Boulevard to the preferred parking gate.
  • Share food. Select different fried or sweet treats from various vendors and try a little bit of everything. If you’re with a group and everyone purchases something different and shares you’ll have a larger variety and won’t end up with a stomach ache from trying to finish off that $7 cup of corn.
  • Avoid the giant teddy bears. It is a sweet gesture when your loved one wins you a giant teddy bear but the cost of playing multiple games can add up. Instead of spending money on multiple games for a giant stuffed animal that will just take up space in your room, play for the smaller prizes and then donate your stuffed animal at the end of the day.

And of course, enter for a chance to win tickets with La Prensa San Diego or visit the discount page for deals such as College Day and adult discounts.