San Diego

Travel Guide
San Diego
On the sun-drenched Pacific coast, this Southern California city provides great beaches, a famous zoo, historic sites and exciting nightlife.

San Diego is one of the most populated U.S. cities, but its laid-back lifestyle and pleasant open spaces give it a crowd-free feel. Bring the family to enjoy zoos, parks and beaches or have a romantic vacation with winery tours, great food and cultural evenings.

In Balboa Park near downtown, the famous San Diego Zoo has giant pandas, koalas and more than 3,500 animals in natural habitats, as well as 700,000 exotic plants. See more wild animals or even spend the night at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park north of the city. Enjoy marine animals and rides at SeaWorld®.

Along the ocean northwest of downtown is La Jolla. Hike past craggy trees in Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve and watch for whales beyond the shoreline. Play at the renowned Torrey Pines Golf Course or visit the beaches along this peninsula to swim and watch sea lions.

In San Diego Bay, tour the USS Midway Museum, a retired aircraft carrier with 29 planes from World War II to Desert Storm as well as exciting flight simulators. A few blocks north is the Maritime Museum of San Diego, with restored tall ships from the days of early explorers.

San Diego has more than 70 miles (110 kilometers) of beaches for snorkeling, swimming, surfing and watersports. Enjoy the sands of Mission Beach, Pacific Beach and Windansea Beach.

The city has abundant cultural attractions including more than 15 museums and performance venues in Balboa Park. Attend first-run and popular touring plays at La Jolla Playhouse.

Visit the Gaslamp Quarter to view historic Victorian homes and sample San Diego’s fine dining and exciting nightlife. See a professional baseball game at Petco Park or let the kids enjoy interactive exhibits at the New Children’s Museum.

Fly into San Diego International Airport or drive along the scenic coastal highway and stop to view the Pacific Ocean. Visit some of the county’s 100 wineries. End your days with sunsets at Cabrillo National Monument or La Jolla Cove.

Where to stay in San Diego

US Grant Hotel

Downtown San Diego

4.5/5(716 area reviews)

Cultural and financial hub, Downtown San Diego boasts the Symphony, Opera, theaters, museums, and historic sites like Gaslamp Quarter. Enjoy diverse shops, dining, nightlife, and convenient public transport options.

Downtown San Diego
Belmont Park showing rides and a garden

Mission Beach

Spanning nearly two miles of oceanfront, this sandbar community offers sunbathing, surfing, and beach volleyball, with nearby attractions like Belmont Park's Giant Dipper Roller Coaster and SeaWorld in Mission Bay Park.

Mission Beach
Pacific Beach Park showing a beach

Pacific Beach

4.5/5(82 area reviews)

Boasting a lively nightlife scene, Pacific Beach offers miles of sandy shores, a bustling 3.2-mile boardwalk, and attractions like Crystal Pier and Kate Sessions Park. Enjoy local shops, bars, and eateries along the vibrant walkway.

Pacific Beach