Thanks San Diego for graciously sponsoring me to share this experience with you, I am super grateful. All opinions are of course my own.
Le Sigh. Feeling refreshed ya'll.
You would think that living in Los Angeles (in Venice by the beach actually) you'd be really relaxed and feel unphased by all that's happening.
But, thats not true and in LA it's pretty hectic. I don't want to complain, but there's things like traffic, lots of people, tourists...it's just a lot sometimes. Especially being right in Venice, by the beach there is a lot happening on weekends especially. You can't really get away from it.
So, when I think about travel I really look for places that are different than here. Or places that are more chilll.
That's one of the reasons I love San Diego. I landed that afternoon at the airport, and LET ME TELL YA, landing at an airport where you can easy breezy walk in and walk out, FEELS AMAZING. I love when there's no traffic, and I am able to get to where I need to go lickity split.
You feel a sense of calm right when you land. That feeling that you're in California.
Like true California where people are laid back, everyone's friendly, people value the outdoors, clean eating and enjoying life...it's a beautiful thing
Just when you're thinking that you've been living in California you're whole life, you visit San Diego and recognize that it's the TRUE California.
Let me explain.
San Diego has a healthy dose of sunshine, a cool surf-town scene, and hands-down the best Mexican food north of the border.
It's got the pristine year-round weather, cute beach nooks, friendly people and it's full of things to do. There's also a flourishing restaurant and bar scene, and everyone seems to really enjoy life. There are museums, and the popular Gaslamp Quarter is great for partying if you're into that sort of thing :). Justin and I had this weekend down as more of a 'romantic' getaway but San Diego has a lot of range and you can do it multiple ways.
For me, it was a perfect romantic holiday getaway, but it's also a family-friendly destination (with lots to do for families).
Plus, every month is a good month to visit San Diego (or anywhere in California for that matter) since there really is no such thing as an off-season. If you’d like to avoid a moderate influx in traffic, stick to March through May and September through November. But the sweet spot for visitors is in the fall and winter months, when hotel room rates are lower and weather is still above average temperatures.
So I am really excited to share my recommendations for what to do during a weekend trip in SD. I have a full guide that's linked at the end that details a breakdown of everything to see and do!
Must Do Things During a Weekend Trip:
Balboa Park: With more than 85 activities inside this 1,200-acre park, there’s no shortage of things to do. We strolled through the Japanese Garden (which was really fun) and people watched. It was great to see everyone who was out and about enjoying themselves. I love that it's a big park in the middle of the city, that has so much to do but also gives people space to just relax in the grass and soak up the sun. It reminded me of living in NYC when we'd venture over to Central Park to get away and relax. If I could move anything from SD up to LA it would be Balboa Park for SURE.
Torrey Pines State Park: This park could be my favorite in California. It's really easy to get to, to park, to walk and hike there, and you can go from the beach to the hike really easily. We spent a good part of the day here. It's $15 to get in and park with a car. If you walk in, it's free!
Eat at Kindred: A vegan spot that has amazing decor, cool vibes and is perfect for non-vegans to. The menu is AMAZING and whenever I find a place where I can bring Justin and he is tricked into eating vegan, I am HAPPY.
Get Matcha at Holy Matcha SD: I know it's basic, but I do not CARE. They have really amazing adaptogenic lattes and drinks, that are delicious and make me happy. You can check out my Instagram Post on my IG that details my favorite drink that I order if you're looking to make a Holy Matcha SD at home. The pink makes for an amazing photo right?
Go to a Padres Game: Seriously. I went to a game on Saturday and it was SO FUN to walk in, sit in perfect weather and just HANG. People in San Diego love The Padres, so being a part of the action was really a TREAT.
Hang at the Pendry Rooftop: I really love this place, and it's got a gorgeous view of Downtown San Diego. I would highly suggest hanging here for a nice afternoon by the pool. Justin ordered a few frozen drinks to celebrate our weekend away :).
Explore La Jolla: The cutest little town, you feel at home here. If you can, try to hike, or spend an afternoon in the town of La Jolla.
Talk to the Locals: That's the big thing about SD, the people remind me of home (like my home home in the MidWest). They're nice, warm, open, and really into family and sports, ha. It's a refreshing thing! We loved eating at the bars of restaurants just so we could talk to the local people.
Pick Strawberries at Suzie’s Farm: Justin and I had such a cute little date at the farm, it was nice to be outside and OMG the strawberries! SO GOOD. I would highly suggest doing this as a family, or couple. We took our strawberries home and made some really great smoothies all week. There's nothing like super fresh Callifornia produce.
Visit Liberty Public Market: We walked around here and browsed the trendy eateries, bars, and specialty food & craft vendors at this cute market, located in an updated Navy building in Liberty Station. Plus there is a huge outdoor eating area that features a garden, as well as live music on Sundays that you can hang out to.
Catch a sunset at Sunset Cliffs: Justin and I did a romantic evening here, and this is one of the most breathtaking places to watch the sunset by the ocean, period.
Shop at Pigment: A cute little card store in North Park, they also have great spots to get photos for the gram (shown here!)
Hike Potato Chip Rock: We didn't get to do this, because it's actually about an hour + outside the city, but every time I see the pictures, I just die. This hike is so rad, just look up Potato Chip Rock on IG and you'll know why this is so famous.
Take Great Instagram Photos Outside the Gorgeous Public Library: When shooting with my photographer Arielle, she suggested to shoot downtown near the library which is super modern and has really nice clean lines. Great for all bloggers to use for any photos they want to take during their stay! Plus the inside of the library is really huge and has these gorgeous floor to ceiling windows. I spent the morning here working on Sunday and really loved how peaceful it was. You can see the vibe right here.
Anything I missed? So excited for you to explore San Diego!
Photos by me and Arielle Levy (she is local to SD!)
Funded in part with City of San Diego Tourism Marketing District Assessment Funds.