“America’s Finest City”, as San Diego proudly calls itself, rarely disappoints. Although it’s not so popular as Miami Beach, Los Angeles or New York, San Diego abounds in amazing sights and fun things to do. It’s not at all laid-back, and modesty is definitely not a word in its vocabulary, but nonetheless tourists love it. And what’s not to love? Boasting a superb coastline, San Diego attracts sun worshipers, surfers and youngsters from all over the US.
Never-ending sunshine and unspoilt beaches
The touristic side of San Diego gravitates around its wonderful beaches. The fairest of them all is undoubtedly La Jolla, the urban beach paradise where surfing, stand-up paddleboarding and sunbathing meet luxury hotels, outstanding dining and world-class golf courses. The youngster gather mostly at Mission Beach, the perfect spot for windsurfing, kayaking, waterskiing and people-watching. Both Mission Beach and Pacific Beach are also perfect for walks along the boardwalk.
Family-friendly San Diego
If you’re planning for a family trip, San Diego is a great choice. While parents will love sipping coffee at one of the many cafes in the beautiful Gaslamp Quarter, kids will enjoy their trips to LEGOLAND, San Diego Zoo and New Children’s Museum…of course, accompanied by adults. Museums for grown-ups are to be found in Balboa Park, as well as performing arts venues and beautiful gardens. There’s no shortage of theaters in San Diego, the most popular ones being La Paloma Theater, National Comedy Theater, Horton Grand Theater, to name just a few. If you’re in the mood for opera, head to the San Diego Symphony, while those who want to watch a movie will surely enjoy the Cinema Under the Stars. The beaches are for everybody, so enjoy!
Distinctive and charming neighborhoods
Each neighborhood has its own personality and charm, so you should take your time to visit at least the most notable ones. You have the historic Gaslamp Quarter, rich in cafes and boutiques, Little Italy brings more cafes and art galleries to the San Diego’s scene, while Embarcadero District invites tourists to admire ancient ships. Coronado, a small island with a shabby chic town vibe, charms its visitors with superb beaches, a boardwalk perfect for romance in the sunset and the legendary Hotel del Coronado. The LGBT hub of San Diego is Hillcrest, a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood with great restaurants, antique stores and impressive wine bars.
The finest craft beer city
Although you might think that this title belongs to Portland or Denver, the truth is that San Diego is becoming the most prolific beer scene in the country. It has no less than 75 craft brewers and the number is continuing to increase. So, you can’t leave San Diego without trying the local beers, each label featuring between two and ten year-round brews. Here are some of the most popular breweries in town: Stone Brewing Co., Alesmith Brewing Company and Ballast Point. If you’re into seasonal and experimental beers, then check out the Green Flash, Societe and Modern Times.
Flourishing restaurant scene
It’s already a known fact that San Diego has the best Mexican food north of the border. This is not a surprise, considering its southern neighbor, Mexico. However, the culinary scene is flourishing in San Diego and you will discover a variety of restaurants that serve international cuisine. Little Italy is the perfect place to find delicious Italian, French and seafood restaurants, as well as two restaurants owned by celebrity chef Richard Blais. A little bit of everything can be found in the 25,000 square-feet Liberty Public Market dedicate to food from all over the world.
The fabulous San Diego hotels
San Diego accommodation scene is absolutely impressive and unexpectedly diverse. You can find here from country inns, charming, boutique and very rancho-California style, to luxury resorts, where guests are treated like royalty. The Fairmont Grand Del Mar hotel is reserved for the very rich and not necessarily famous, inviting guests to enjoy facilities such as an award-winning spa center, an impeccable restaurant, as well as many pools, an 18-hole golf horse and check this out – horse stables. The beachfront Hotel del Coronado is an icon in San Diego and its fame has definitely been earn fairly. If you’re looking for a classic, old-fashioned ranch, but without compromising last generation facilities, Rancho Santa Fe is the place where you should book your room.
From designer fashion to surf-inspired clothing
That’s right! The shopping scene is large enough to offer anything you need or want, from a Tiffany’s diamond ring to a basic t-shirt. What’s important to mention is that San Diego fashion scene revolves more around locally owned boutiques than national retailers. However, this doesn’t stop many new shopping centers to open their doors to the public. So, if you’re into all that mall shopping experience, head to Point Loma’s Liberty Station shopping area. Trendsetters, or in simpler words, rich people, prefer to do their shopping at the Fashion Valley Mall situated in Mission Valley. Boutiques are to be found in North Park and Gaslamp Quarter. Handcrafted products, such as ceramics, jewelry and pottery, await in the Old Town, while Uptown is reserved for charming bookstores and quirky gift shops. The best place for flip-flops and swimwear? The beach, of course!