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One of the most-visited cities in southern California, it won’t take you long to figure out why so many people love San Diego!
From the high-class hotels to the diversity in cuisine, there’s everything you need for a fun and relaxing vacation adventure.
Whether you’re planning to stay in San Diego for a few days or a few weeks, check out this list of some of the city’s highlights to help you plan the trip of your lifetime!
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Get your bases covered with a solid accommodation option in the region of San Diego that will work best for you and your vacation plans.
The perfect option is you’re hoping to really see the historic quarter of San Diego, the Horton Grand Hotel combines the historic character of the area with state-of-the-art accommodation!
You’ll be walking distance from numerous attractions and onsite you can enjoy a restaurant, bar, and live entertainment!
Whether you’re enjoying a meal at the onsite restaurant or relaxing in your room, the Gaslamp Plaza Suites has you covered for comfort and convenience!
The European style hotel is located right in the heart of downtown and is known for its elegant architectural design.
MUST READ! Find out where to stay in San Diego for any type of trip or budget!
No want will go unanswered at the Omni San Diego Hotel! Enjoy delicious local food at the onsite restaurant, relax at the outdoor pool, and hit the gym for a workout.
You’ll be able to relax in style in a room equipped with bathrobes, in-room dining, and flat-screen TVs!
A harbor cruise gives you a front-row seat for all the top landmarks of San Diego!
You’ll get to see the Midway Aircraft Carrier, the Coronado Bridge and more all with a local guide to tell you more about the history and importance of these places.
San Diego is amazing! And these great hotels will blow your mind!
The picturesque promenade along the San Diego waterfront is known as Embarcadero.
It’s a great place to go for a walk, bring kids to the Waterfront Park, or browse for a local souvenir among one of the numerous shops!
The USS Midway is famous for being the longest-serving aircraft carrier in the US military.
Now retired, the vessel serves as a museum full of interesting exhibits for guests to learn more about military history and to view some of the restored aircraft for themselves!
Just to the west of San Diego is the peninsula called Point Loma, known for its spectacular views of the Pacific and the city skyline!
Point Loma has historic significance as the point Europeans first made land on the west coast of America in 1542.
What sort of trip are you planning? Downtown San diego has incredible hotels for all types of visits!
Not far from San Diego is the incredible La Jolla Cove, known for its sandstone cliffs and sea caves!
Bring your camera and a sense of adventure! La Jolla is a fun spot to visit with a bike tour, allowing you to see other attractions along the way and learn about the regional history.
Maybe you don’t have much time in San Diego or you’re not exactly sure where to begin your sightseeing adventure. Never fear, the hop-on-hop-off bus is the solution!
Stopping at numerous main attractions around the city, you can visit all the highlights of San Diego such as the Zoo, Balboa Park, and the Gaslamp Quarter! Stop at your favorite places, then get back on the bus at your convenience.
Excited to visit San Diego? Get excited to take an amazing day trip too!
Get in on the local scene of San Diego and try out surfing, arguably one of the most popular sports in the city!
You’ll have your pick of beaches, lessons, and instructors so you can have fun whether it’s your first time or your hundredth time surfing.
The picturesque wine region in Mexico is somewhere you’ll definitely want to check out, both for the amazing wine and the incredible view!
An easy day trip from San Diego, the Valle de Guadalupe is the perfect place to learn about local culture and try authentic cuisine!
Go back to the roots of San Diego by visiting the preserved Old Town area, the site where Europeans first made a settlement.
Full of local shops, great restaurants, and art galleries, there’s plenty to see and do beyond the historic aspect as well!
Insider Guide! These are the absolute BEST times of the year to visit San Diego!
Head south across the border for a day of sightseeing in Mexico! It’s an easy trip to make from San Diego and let you see some of the best coastline in the country.
From horseback riding on Rosarito Beach to the Tijuana Tower, your day will be full of amazing sites and wonderful adventures.
A small section of downtown San Diego, Little Italy traces its roots back to immigrant Italians coming to work for the tuna industry.
Today, the area preserves its heritage in the form of excellent cuisine, charming local shops, and cool galleries!
If you’re the outdoorsy type, a kayak adventure out to the sea caves of La Jolla Ecological Reserve is the thing for you!
View the 3 singular habitats of the area and have the chance to see some local species like leopard sharks, sea lions, and maybe even a dolphin!
Coronado Beach is one of the most highly acclaimed beaches in the United States!
Thankfully, its in easy reach of San Diego, making it the perfect spot to take the kids for an afternoon swim, or visit for a romantic bonfire in the evening.
If you’re the type of person who prefers to sightsee at your own pace, renting a scooter in downtown San Diego is the perfect option for you.
The scooter GPS will guide you around the city, making sure you hit all the top landmarks but always at your own leisure!
From Gustav Klimt to El Greco, the San Diego Museum is particularly known for its Baroque and Spanish Renaissance paintings.
Check out the masterpieces when you visit Balboa Park or attend one of the regular events hosted at the venue!
One of the most-visited attractions in San Diego, the Natural History Museum has something for people of all ages.
With exhibitions spread across 3 floors and a 3D movie theater, you can easily spend hours at the museum and still have more to see!
If you’re interested in history, you should definitely check out the Mission San Diego de Alcalá.
From the archeological artifacts displayed at the Mission Museum to an enormous bell dating back to 1805, the site is full of stories and wonders!
If you’re traveling to San Diego with young children, make sure to get tickets to the world of fun at LEGOLAND!
From fast roller coasters to building block games for little ones, you can rest assured that a day at LEGOLAND will be a day of amazing memories with your kids.
All things flight-related can be found in the San Diego Air & Space Museum, a fun spot to go for people of all ages!
If you’re feeling up to the challenge, you can try out a flight simulator, but there are also plenty of low-key activities, games, and exhibits as well.
Get out on the water and try out stand-up paddle boarding in the resort town of Coronado.
A great way to cool off during the hot San Diego summers, paddle boarding also gives you a new perspective on the city and coastline!
For some breathtaking views and the chance to see the native Torrey Pine, you can take a break from the city and head to Torrey Pine State Nature Reserve.
There are plenty of hiking trails for you to enjoy the fresh sea breeze and a nice break from the rush and traffic of San Diego!
Try some of San Diego’s signature craft beers and an exclusive beer tasting tour in the downtown part of the city!
You’ll get to meet some of the locals who have created the most famous brands and learn a bit about their methods and secrets to the perfect beer.
Easily the most recognizable feature on Coronado Beach is the sprawling Victorian-style beachfront hotel known as Hotel del Coronado.
If you want to experience some extreme luxury, go ahead and book a room, but there are also tours available to the public just to appreciate the architecture and history!
Over to Mexico and back to San Diego in a day! You can experience the top sites of the famous Mexican city, then be back to your hotel in San Diego at night.
Try out local foods, visit landmarks like the Tijuana Water Tower, and do some shopping at the Avenida Revolucion!
A unique museum of San Diego, the Maritime Museum is most famous for its heritage vessels, including a few submarines!
Stop by while you’re walking along Embarcadero for a one-of-a-kind experience and an interesting lesson on maritime history.
Balboa Park is one of the most famous parks in the United States. Everyone coming to San Diego should make sure a day (or more!) at the park is included in the trip itinerary!
Hopping on a Segway tour is a great way to see more of the park without getting sore feet in the process!
The protected area known as Children’s Pool Beach was once intended for swimming before sea lions decided it was the perfect place to relax!
In the winter you’ll be able to see baby sea lion up close as they relax on the rocks with their mothers.
You don’t have to be an expert to give driving a speed boat a try! With the guide of an experienced professional, you’ll be cruising around the San Diego harbor in no time.
It’s a great way to get an adrenaline rush and learn some interesting facts about the coastal city!
Needing a break from the city? Well, you won’t even have to leave city limits to enjoy Mission Trails Regional Park!
You can leave the noisy city traffic behind you and enjoy the peaceful walking trails, historic sites, and beautiful panorama view from the hills in Mission Trails.
In the evening, the lights of San Diego bring the city to life in a magical glow.
The best seat in the house is from the harbor, and on a special nighttime cruise you’ll have the chance to get some photos that will have all your friends back at home jealous of your trip!
The name gives it all away-Sunset Cliffs Natural Park is famous for its spectacular cliffs and perfect view of the sunset over the Pacific.
Bring a picnic and some folding chairs for a romantic and memorable evening in San Diego!
Whether you’re coming to San Diego by yourself for a break from work or you’re taking your whole family for a summer vacation, it’s hard to beat the variety of fun activities this city has to offer! Enjoy the best of southern California by planning a trip to San Diego for your next vacation.
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Emma Johnson lives to travel! Born in Washington D.C., Emma is a hotel connoisseur and a staff writer at Hotel Jules. An army brat, Emma got the travel bug early and has never been able to stop. Now, she has proudly visited 70+ countries and plans to visit every country in the world! Passionate about her ukelele (obviously) and her family, Emma eventually wants to retire in Thailand and write a book about all of her travel experiences.