An exciting, varied, vibrant urban paradise to explore
Sophisticated Downtown San Diego is a thrilling place to spend time and get a flavour of big city California living. By day there's the New Children's Museum, Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo, eating out, exploring fascinating old buildings and top notch shopping. By night the place lights up like a Christmas tree as the area's many nightclubs, hot music venues and sophisticated rooftop bars open for business.
The excellent San Diego Zoo is where the first baby panda was born in the Western Hemisphere since 1990.
Close to the Downtown area you'll find The Old Town State Historic park which is the most visited park in California, founded around 1820 by demobilised Mexican soldiers from Presidio Hill. Marvel at the restored adobe houses and enjoy even more excellent shopping and dining opportunities.
Explore the beautiful San Diego Museum of Art in all its mock-17th century splendour
Visit one of the US military's biggest ships, the decommissioned USS Midway
Wander around the incredibly colourful Horton Plaza with its avant-garde architecture
Seaport Village is simply delightful, right on the edge of the waterfront and stuffed with scenic eateries, shops and bars.
Discover San Diego From £699.00 (inc flights and hotels)
The city is made up of a whole host of districts each with their own charm, from the Victorian splendour of the historic Gaslamp Quarter to the constant rhythms of lively downtown. Explore every corner of this fascinating city – you won’t be disappointed.
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The Embarcadero district lies to the west of San Diego downtown, with a lovely, long boardwalk following the curve of the eastern edge of the bay. More funky local flavour awaits you in the Little Italy district to the north. It's a place of excellent coffee and Italian pastries, fine alfresco dining and excellent wines, home to art galleries, smart designer furniture stores and cool boutiques.
Explore the vibrant Embarcadero district with its famous Navy Pier
Enjoy summer concerts and movies along the water’s edge
Take a segway tour and explore farther afield
There's so much to do in this lively, varied city and San Diego's downtown district is one of the most popular tourist areas, perfect for days of exploring, chilling, discovering and digging for bargains.
Songs written about San Diego include Bing Crosby’s 'Where the Turf Meets the Surf', Bruce Springsteen’s 'Balboa Park' and Eric Clapton’s 'The Road to Escondido'.
Located nearby you'll find San Diego's legendary Balboa Park - a fabulous 1,400 acre open space jammed with historical buildings, museums and gardens, originally created for the 1915 Panama California Exhibition. The buildings are gorgeous, designed in quirky and highly decorative Spanish-Mexican style. Attractions include the Botanical Gardens and lily pond, Museum of Man, the Museum of Natural History, Museum of Art and, of course, the city's world-class zoo. Running between Broadway and San Diego Bay, the jewel in downtown San Diego's crown is the delightful Gaslamp Quarter National Historic District with its beautifully restored late 1800s / early 1900s buildings. Once run down and seedy, these days it's a hugely fashionable twenty block area lined with excellent shops, great restaurants and art galleries.
The Old Globe theatre and Timken Art Gallery, the Hall of Champions and House of Hospitality, Space Theatre, Organ Pavillion and Aerospace Historical Center all offer fascinating times in downtown San Diego. The elegant Star of India, built in 1863, is the planet's oldest working sailing ship, and San Diego is its home port. It has circumnavigated the world by wind power alone a breathtaking 21 times. And the wonderful Urban Trees, 30 amazing tree sculptures set along San Diego’s Embarcadero, make a beautiful sight day and night, designed to add 'colour, form and interest' to the waterfront.
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Our team have all had their own California adventures, ask them for a few stories!