Stumped on where to find the perfect gift for the pint-sized aficionado in your life? If you have a kiddo who’s gaga for a certain theme: trains, planes, dinosaurs, outer space, art, etc. then you’ll find presents galore in Balboa Park’s free-to-enter museum gift shops––where a treasure trove of offerings reflect the beloved museum exhibits. From astronaut ice cream to fossil exploration kits, Blue Angel toy aircraft to costume butterfly wings, each shop boasts one-of-a-kind holiday picks. Read on to see where to score some wow-worthy gifts.

Spanish Village Art Center

Peruse the colorful courtyard of the Spanish Village Art Center filled with live music and stunning handcrafted gifts––all made by local artists. This is a perfect place to shop for someone who treasures beautiful artistic jewelry or home decor. You’ll find pottery, quilts, ceramics, decorative gourds, just about anything you can imagine. Many artists can help you customize a special piece. For a totally unique idea, stop in at Studio 41 where you can make a personalized family totem with symbols to represent each of the wild spirits in your home.

Online: spanishvillageart.com

Photo: Chris Stell

Where’s your favorite place to score unique gifts in Balboa Park? Share in the comments!

––Cherie Gough (photos too, except where noted; featured image courtesy of Balboa Park December Nights)