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.


Find a dino-mite gift for the little dinosaurs who stomp and roar through your kitchen every morning at the Natural History Museum’s gift shop. It’s a fun place to dig up some new rocks and minerals for your rockhound’s stocking, or track down a perfect gift for Christmas morning: puzzles, trucks, and dino backpacks. Find a great kit exploring fossils or volcanoes. Shop for nature lovers here too: from butterfly wings for little girls to pretty floral scarves and jewelry for moms.


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)