Balboa Park's Best Hidden Gem: The Spanish Village Art Center

Hi! We’re Candy and Crystal. We’re sisters who grew up as military brats and spent the first half of our lives in Japan. The majority of our family resides in Japan, but we ventured out and have spent the second half of our lives mainly in the United States. We both love traveling and have always documented our travels, so we decided it was time to share our travel experiences with the rest of the world.

If you are a resident of San Diego or on your way to visit San Diego, you have most likely heard of Balboa Park. It's like going to New York and and hearing about Central Park. I have been to Balboa Park a handful of times now and today was the first time I stumbled upon the Spanish Village Art Center. I had no idea this place existed in Balboa Park.

Spanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.comSpanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.com

I went with a friend who grew up in San Diego who has frequented Balboa park and the San Diego zoo numerous times and even she didn't know about this hidden gem.

Spanish Village+www.thetravelpockets.comSpanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.com

As soon as we spotted this colorful little village, we were super excited to start exploring. The village was established in the late 1930s and all the buildings are the original buildings with the exception of a new coat of paint. The artists that work here today are not allowed to change anything to the exterior to preserve this amazing historic site. Now it totally makes sense to me why the buildings were so small and vintage looking!

Spanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.comSpanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.comSpanish Village + www.thetravelpockets.com

I am not an art major and no little about art, but just being here made me smile and want to learn more about the artists and how they became a member of this community. Every studio has an artist who holds a story and love behind their gorgeous crafts.

THIS ARTIST TOLD ME THAT IT TOOK HIM A YEAR TO CREATE THIS PEICE. HE WAS  ADDING THE FINAL TOUCHES THAT DAY.

THIS ARTIST TOLD ME THAT IT TOOK HIM A YEAR TO CREATE THIS PEICE. HE WAS  ADDING THE FINAL TOUCHES THAT DAY.

NIGHT LIGHTS

NIGHT LIGHTS

THERE WERE SQUI RRELS EVERYWHERE 

THERE WERE SQUI RRELS EVERYWHERE 

I went on a weekday and it was fairly quiet and some of the studios were closed. But the weekends are filled with more activities and events like pottery demonstrations and artist's showing new techniques like alcohol ink art.