Most people picture Los Angeles when they think of sunny southern California, and tend to forget or overlook the vibrant, young, vivacious city, located just about as south as you can go in the state- San Diego. Just a 2-hour drive down the 405 from Hollywood, the city basks in its own entertainment industry, professional sports team, scenic beaches and beautiful weather. So, whether you hail from the cold climates of the north and want to escape the chill for a little while, or just need a change of scenery, San Diego varies its attractions with style with something to offer for everyone, and is sure to satisfy the sports nut, art buff, museum-goer, or nature lover in anyone.
Though NFL football said its goodbyes to the city’s beloved San Diego Chargers last year, San Diego still offers multiple entertainment options for all tastes in the world of sports. It’s professional baseball team, the Padres, begin playing in early April at Petco Park, all the way through late September during the regular season. With Eric Hosmer on board, the Padres actually have a semi-promising outlook for 2018 in the highly competitive NL West. Padres games will certainly be a hot commodity this year and make for a perfect Saturday or Sunday with the family. Another arena in the city, SDCCU Stadium, presents everything from international soccer matches, college football (the beloved home to Aztec football and the Holiday Bowl), and even to the American Nina Warrior live experience. And if you’re around for the holiday season, you don’t want to miss the chance to see the Global Winter Wonderland, with exhilarating rides for the adrenaline junkies in the group, top pedigree Circus entertainment for the entire family, and dazzling light displays celebrating the many holidays of the world.
Although it’s good to have the structure in your schedule that these events provide, you may also want to explore the city itself, on your own time. The city’s vast expanse of art and culture provide the ultimate opportunity for meandering among a diverse, creative atmosphere. A total of 9 art districts comprise the scene in San Diego, each one with its own unique tastes and style to satisfy any particular fancy you may have.
If nature is a bit more your style, there is almost nothing more to say than the fact that the City is one of America’s finest coastal locations. The beaches and ocean views alone are enough to draw visitors from around the world, such as Brazos Minshew Arizona. But as if this wasn’t enough to satisfy the locals, Balboa Park makes sure the natural beauty of the local climate is brought to the forefront. This multi-attraction park covers a massive 1,200 acres of land in the heart of the city and is home to the city’s world-renowned San Diego Zoo, which boasts over 4,000 animals to see and even allows you to bring your own food and drinks to enjoy at its many picnic areas. But Balboa Park itself features even more than animal fun, being declared a National Historic Landmark in 1977 along with its celebrated Exposition buildings.
Art lovers and history buffs can also enjoy the trip with the experience of the true culture of the area in the Spanish Colonial, Mission, and Pueblo Revival architecture of the structures within the park. Whatever your interest, the park combines science, nature, and culture into one expansive and beautiful location, and is home to more than 17 museums, various performance venues (The Beatles played their only San Diego appearance here), botanical gardens, and trails to take a leisure stroll down. You certainly do not want to overlook this attraction during your visit.
Maybe you’re looking to get active yourself, and want to hit the links in the area. Luckily, due to the year-round warmth of the climate, San Diego is home to world-class golf courses. Torrey Pines is the cream of the crop when it comes to San Diego golf. With these breathtaking views, you won’t even remember you’ve three-putted the last two holes. Torrey Pines plays host to the Farmers Insurance Open, a classic open on the PGA Tour, where world-renowned golfers like Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, and Jason Day hit the course. Jason Day took home the bulk of the purse in the open in early February. Outside of Torrey Pines, Balboa Park Golf Course offers the luxurious nature of southern California with a fun-filled activity. But no matter which course you decide to play, each has its own gems to offer, and you will not be disappointed, regardless of your choice. So, get out to the range, work on your short game, and get ready to enjoy some of the finest tracks in the world.
Day trips are certainly on the table as well, as San Diego is within driving distance of both Los Angeles and various natural attractions. If you have young kids, look for convenient fold-up booster seats to use for the day. Both LA and Palm Springs are under a 3-hour drive, and the multiple hiking and star gazing locations are a must-see. Full descriptions of the tens of popular day trips in the area, as well as drive times, have been compiled into a convenient list for quick debate and selection based on your interests.
Of course, you haven’t flown to a luxurious beach town without planning to relax for a while. The City has more than 17 miles of coastline for you to explore, with nine permanent Lifeguard stations along the major beaches. Picture yourself after a day of exploring the city’s almost limitless attractions, strolling down to the beach to watch the magnificent sunset over the Pacific. Maybe you’ve brought some wine along from one of the multiple urban wineries in the city. Plop that behind down to enjoy one of the most spectacular natural sights this world has to offer. Sip the sun away in the warm sand and gentle ocean breeze, and bask in the true beauty that is San Diego.