A few months ago Danny and I went to San Diego and it was a short week full of lots of beautiful sunshine. When people say that SD has perfect weather, that is no lie- every minute was amazing! A few highlights were the San Diego Zoo and kayaking next to the sea lions, but the sunsets and rock formations by the ocean are what captured my heart!
I've put together a rough guide with some tips, things to do, and LOTS of pictures. Hope you like it! :)
First of all, San Diego is more spread out than we realized and the public transportation isn't super reliable. We ended up renting a car (which we've never done on any of our previous vacations) and I would highly recommend it. We stayed in North Park, which is a great area with lots of restaurants and shops in walking distance, and ended up driving to the beach almost every night to watch the sunset. It was about 25 minutes to the beach because of the traffic. I didn't expect it to take that long from our house, but I had no idea how many surfers would be flocking to the beach on a daily basis. Surf or die. I respect that.
The first thing we did when we arrived was check into our SUPA cute Airbnb, then hit the nearest beach for a quick walk and our first San Diego fish tacos.
Our first morning we got up early for a stroll through the adorable North Park houses and ended up at WowWowWaffle for breakfast. We spent a solid 6 hours or so at the zoo because it's insanely big (and surprisingly expensive) but totally worth it. You get free trolley and Sky Tram rides with your zoo admission, so be sure to get there early to beat the lines and take advantage of the free transportation- you'll definitely need it ;)
We ended our zoo day with some Port Pizza and Sunset Cliffs. The view here really is something you'll want to see. When the sun sets, the rocks go from tan to vibrant yellow/orange/red/beautiful. Take some food and drinks and go hang out here for awhile, it's a busy spot with plenty of people watching to go with the beautiful scenery.
The next day we spent a lot of time in La Jolla! (Which is pronounced la-hoya, we quickly found out) We went kayaking in hopes of getting to go inside cave formations, but it was too wavy and dangerous. I got a little seasick but I still enjoyed it! We grabbed some tacos at the Taco Stand afterwards (get the coconut palletas!) and watched the sea lions for a long time. It's so fun to get up close and personal with them, watching them jump in and out of the water and riding the waves just like the surfers :) Be careful and don't get too close, they'll bark at you!
We weren't going to go to Coronado Island because we had heard it was a little touristy and not really worth the drive, but I totally disagree! It was such a pretty place, very clean and family friendly. We were only there for long enough to enjoy the sunset, but I'm glad we got to see Hotel del Coronado and dip our toes in the beautiful white sand.
(above): The wooden sampler tray from Fall Brewing that I'm obsessed with. And a mango michelada from Tacos Perla, OMG.
:: Some key things/places that I think you would totally enjoy ::
- Get a cold coffee chiller at Caffe Calabria.. SO delicious. I wanted one every day.
- Tiki drinks and a Padres game at Rare Form (probably the cutest bar I've ever been to). Slightly pricey so go during happy hour.
- Spend at least half a day at the San Diego Zoo. The hippo pool and polar bear exhibit were great, I could have sat there and watched the hippos swim for hours!
- WowWowWaffle for breakfast. Get the avocado and bacon crumble!
- Go see the sea lions in La Jolla. You definitely won't regret it.
- End one of your nights (or every night!) on Sunset Cliffs. It was one of my favorite places.
Also, if you're a Pinterest freak like I am and you spend hours and hours of internet research before vacations.. then I have a treat for you. My San Diego board is FULL and ready for you. You can thank me later ;)
Coming up later this week, part two. (my favorite part!)