La Jolla is a hilly, seaside community located within San Diego, California with a reported population of 46,781. Its curving coastline occupies up to 7 miles along the Pacific Ocean. On its 3 sides, La Jolla is surrounded by ocean beaches and bluffs, which is why La Jolla is one of California’s most popular beach destinations. Apart from the beaches, La Jolla is also popular for its many educational institutions and the wide variety of businesses.
To begin with, this town boasts of being home to one of the most renowned universities in the world – the University of California. Founded in 1868, this university boasts of 10 campuses with 144,000 staff members, 21,200 faculty members, 251,700 students, and 1.86 million-plus living alumni. 9 of its main campuses enroll both graduate and undergraduate students, with only one campus, UC San Francisco enrolling only professional and graduate students.
Still on the University of California, this national institution manages 3 national laboratories under the U.S. Department of Energy: LLNL (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory), LANL (Los Alamos National Laboratory), and LBNL (Lawrence Berkeley NATIONAL laboratory). All in all, the institutions, colleges, and alumni of this university definitely make it one of the most advanced and comprehensive postsecondary educational system worldwide.
Moving forward, La Jolla also hosts one of U.S’s oldest oceanographic institutes – the Scripts Institution of Oceanography. This popular institution was founded by William Emerson Ritter in 1903 who was then leading the zoology department of the UC Berkeley. It goes without saying that its first laboratory buildings opened in 1907, and in 1912 the institution was integrated into the University of California.
Another important monument in La Jolla worth mentioning is the Camp Mathews – an ancient military base. Its main purpose was to conduct marksmanship training, and the original name was Camp Calvin B. Matthews. That being said, this military base has been in use since 1917 and 1964 by the United States Marine Corps before it was moved due to the rising civilian population around it. As the population grew during and after the World War II, the base had to be moved because the firing range was now less suitable.
Let’s not forget to mention the Ellen Browning Scripps recreational center, which was started by Ellen Browning Scripps – a journalist and publisher. She settled in La Jolla in 1896 and went ahead to live there for 35 years of her remaining life. She was a wealthy woman from her writing and investments. She also inherited a fortune from George H. Scripps, her brother.
Childless and unmarried, she devoted most of her time to philanthropic activities benefitting her La Jolla home. Ellen Scripps is the founder of Scripps College and some of her donations helped launch important institutions such as the Scripps Memorial Hospital, the Children’s Pool, and the Scripps Metabolic Clinic.
Last is the 822-foot-tall Mount Soledad Cross situated on a hill in the eastern edge of this town. In fact, this place is arguably the highest point in San Diego. Originally, the place was known as ount Soledad Easter Cross’. However, this place has had to undergo several court disputes with several parties demanding for its removal.
The dispute reached its climax in 2013 with Larry Burns, a District Judge, ordering its removal within 90 days, but an appeal by the government delayed the order. The good news is that the Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed the case in 2016, stating that Mount Soledad Cross was no longer located on government land.
There are other several landmarks in La Jolla that could be of interest including:
La Valencia Hotel
La Jolla Woman’s Club
Grande Colonial Hotel
The Bishop’s School
La Jolla Recreational Center
Don’t miss out on Balboa Park!