Located just on the edge of Balboa Park a few steps away from the San Diego Zoo, the Balboa Park Desert Garden is an outdoors botanical garden that features over 1,300 different species of plants. The garden covers nearly 2.5 acres, providing visitors with a greater understanding of the natural California landscape. The garden is easy to explore on one's own, and is the perfect place for a casual afternoon walk or run. The trails that run throughout the gardens are free and open to the public 365 days a year. The majority of the succulents and drought-resistant plants in the garden bloom from January to March, so if you're seeking for a bit of color--head over then.