Cabrillo National Monument | Inexpensive Canvases to Display Family Vacation Memories

This post is sponsored by Canvas on the Cheap. All opinions are my own.

Cabrillo National Monument and Inexpensive Canvases to Display Family Vacation Memories

Our most recent California summer vacation created many beautiful cherished moments for our family. We visit Carlsbad and the San Diego area often but this week was filled with new experiences we shared with favorite friends. A close friend from San Diego played tour guide with a visit to the Cabrillo National Monument for a day of exploring, hiking and tide pooling. Short of freezing time, I honestly didn’t know how to display our family vacation memories from the summer because I had so many photos and couldn’t narrow it down to just a couple of favorites. Then I learned about Canvas on the Cheap, the most affordable way to order canvases made from your photos. I didn’t have to choose just one, I created a wall collage full of memories down a long hallway in our home. The large inexpensive canvases are a perfect reminder of a favorite family vacation.

Cabrillo National Monument

While it’s no secret to locals, we had never visited the Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego, California. With the promise of a great day soaking up the California sunshine and amazing views of the ocean, our family drove from Carlsbad to meet our dear friend for lunch at the Liberty Public Market then take the short drive to the park. 

Climbing out of his boat and onto shore in 1542, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo stepped into history as the first European to set foot on what is now the West Coast of the United States. In addition to telling the story of 16th century exploration, the park is home to a wealth of cultural and natural resources. Join us and embark on your own Voyage of Discovery.  

The park is full of history and has so much to see. My daughters adore our friend, Kat, and this day was so special because prior to this visit, we weren’t sure when we would see her again.

The park has stunning views of the Coronado Islands and the Naval Base.

From the main visitor center, you also have a great view of the heroic statue of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo looking out over the bay that he first sailed into on September 28, 1542. He led the first European expedition to explore what is now the west coast of the United States. 

Hiking trails include a paved walking path to the Old Point Loma Lighthouse, another landmark full of history.

You can walk into the lighthouse and climb up to the top. There’s also a lighthouse museum just next door with so many well preserved artifacts and information about the property. My daughters were amazed hearing about the long journey across the bay the children residents had to make everyday just to attend school.

There are several different hiking trails that take you along the coast and down to the water.

With a three year old, our plans to go to the bottom of the trail were cut short at the realization that we would need to walk back up the hill at some point. Little sister rode on her dad’s shoulder’s for most of the hike and we all enjoyed watching the sailboats with a gorgeous ocean view.

We drove to the other side of the park to walk down to the tide pools. There are many safety precautions to take while visiting the tide pools and rangers are onsite for assistance. The terrain is not easy with children and proper footwear is important. There are several different ways to explore and because we were not there at low tide and also had our youngest daughter with us, we didn’t go far. Low tide in the summer is very early in the morning but can be experienced in fall afternoons. We will be planning a visit back soon.

Depending on the tide during your visit, you can observe many different sea creatures. In the splash zone, closest to the shore, we spotted crabs, sea urchins and snails. During low tide you can walk in the intertidal and subtidal zones where you are likely to see larger fish, sea stars, lobsters, octopuses and more.

We snapped so many spontaneous photos and stopped for a few posed images too.

How to Display your Family Vacation Memories

It was impossible to narrow down our favorite photos for a frame so instead, I decided to turn quite a few into large canvases for a hall wall collage. We’ve been in our new home for almost a year and I hadn’t done anything in the long hallway with our home offices and our daughters’ bedrooms. Both my husband and I work from home and spend most of our day upstairs in our offices. This hallway gets quite a bit of traffic and I knew it was the perfect place to host our family vacation memories.

Inexpensive Canvases for your Home

In addition to our visit to the Cabrillo National Monument, we had some beautiful beach photos from our week in Carlsbad. Our youngest daughter dressed as a mermaid splashing in the ocean while her big sister navigated waves on a boogie board are some of the best. They also became part of our family vacation canvas wall collage. The canvases on our wall are the largest I’ve ever printed and also the first hanging in our home not taken during a family holiday photo session with a photographer.

  • 30″ x 40″ family canvas at the Cabrillo National Monument
  • (2) 24″ x 36″ canvases of our daughters at the Carlsbad beach
  • (2) 18″ x 24″ canvases of our daughters at the Carlsbad beach
  • (2) 11″ x 14″ canvases of our daughters at the Cabrillo National Monument

In the same order I also purchased a large 24″ x 36″ of our favorite family photo in Hawaii several years ago to hang on a different wall in our home. I added an 8″ x 8″ canvas with a 1.5″ depth to send to our California friend, Kat, for her desk and thank her for the wonderful family vacation memories. 

Knowing the expense from previous canvas purchases elsewhere I was blown away when I purchased everything noted above for less than $250. In previous experiences with photographers and other brands I have been quoted that price for one canvas but I was able to create a beautiful large family hallway wall collage, hang another favorite elsewhere and send a gift to a friend.

Ordering a canvas from Canvas on the Cheap is easy. Simply upload your photo, select your size and crop appropriately. You can choose the depth of your canvas to be .75″ or 1.5″ depending on your preference. The 1.5″ gallery wrapped canvases have a high end appearance and also can be used for smaller canvases to sit on desktops. The canvases hanging on our wall have a .75″ depth. Shipping is fast and we received our canvases in just about a week. There are also different options for hanging hardware. We selected the complimentary hardware and easily took our canvases straight from the shipped box to the wall.

Do you have favorite family vacation memories that would make an excellent canvas wall gallery too?

Learn more about Canvas on the Cheap by connecting with the inexpensive canvas company on Instagram and Facebook.

15 thoughts on “Cabrillo National Monument | Inexpensive Canvases to Display Family Vacation Memories”

  1. This is definately a place to add to my bucket list while planning a trip to San Diego!! Looks beautiful and I love lighthouses. Going now to check out Canvas on the Cheap…

  2. Beautiful! I love using our own photos to decorate our home- it’s the best to have memories displayed! Now you have me thinking about doing this with our most recent trip photos!

  3. Wow, what a gorgeous site to see with your family. I think capturing family moments on canvases is a wonderful idea!


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