When to visit
- Very Favourable
What to do
- Worth the detour
- Must see
Welcome to the second-largest city in California, located close to the Mexican border.
San Diego has so much to enjoy: lovely architecture, the relaxed attitude of its inhabitants, the landscape, the good weather...
You'll really feel like you're on vacation!
The Gaslamp Quarter is a small neighbourhood with a great deal of architectural charm thanks to its restored 19th-century buildings. It is particularly lively on weekends and has a vibrant nightlife. People go there to browse the trendy boutiques that line its busy streets and for 5th Avenue , its main street, with its antique shops, cafes, restaurants, patios, nightclubs, theatres and trendy bars.
From Harbor Drive to Broadway, and from Union Street to 6th Avenue.
Balboa Park is the largest urban cultural park in the United States. It contains 15 major museums, renowned performing arts venues, lovely gardens, and the famous San Diego Zoo. Occupying 486 hectares, it is located in the heart of the city and admission is free if you do not intend to visit any of the museums. Why not enjoy a picnic lunch on its vast green lawns?
The park's most popular museums are the Museum of Man , the Air & Space Museum , the Museum of Art , and the Fleet Science Center.
SAN DIEGO ZOO
The famous San Diego Zoo has a reputation as one of the best zoos in the world, with its 50 hectares of wooded and hilly terrain and some 800 species of animals.
Some of the zoo's highlights include the Children's Zoo (for visitors with children) and the Skyfari, a gondola ride that offers spectacular aerial views of the zoo.
Open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closes later in summer).
This ocean-based amusement park promises lots of fun for the whole family. You can get up close to marine animals such as sharks, orcas, sea lions and dolphins and attend world-class animal shows. There are also thrilling ocean-themed rides. Part of the admission fee helps to support SeaWorld's conservation and animal rescue mission.
Open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closes later in summer).
BEACHES AND SMALL COASTAL TOWNS NORTH OF SAN DIEGO
If you have time, you simply must drive just north of San Diego and explore some of the charming little towns there, like Encinitas , Cardiff and Del Mar. The seaside community of La Jolla , which is within the county of San Diego, is also worth a visit.
If you want to watch real surfers in action, go to San Elijo State Park de Cardiff. It must be nice to live there and end your workday riding the waves...
A must for LEGO lovers of all ages: a truly magical Lego-themed day! If it's hot, be sure to bring your swimsuits so you can enjoy Legoland Water Park, a huge 2.2-hectare water park, which you can visit for an additional fee.
The site also houses Sea Life Aquarium (separate admission), and a new addition to the park, Lego Movie World, is set to open in 2021.
Open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (opens earlier and closes later in summer).
Where to eat
- $ Inexpensive
- $$ Moderate
- $$$ Upscale
- $$$$ Fine dining
Street food has been a popular trend in America for several years now, and Puesto serves up their own tasty version, Mexican-style. The menu features taco dishes of all kinds prepared from fresh ingredients, as well as salads and other authentic Mexican fare. A guaranteed success!
Open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The Melting Pot ($$-$$$)
The Melting Pot is a one-of-a-kind fondue restaurant. You will find an array of cheese fondues and entrée fondues featuring meat, salmon, lobster, shrimp and chicken with different types of bouillon. And for dessert, there is a decadent selection of chocolate fondues. It's a great way to enjoy a meal in good company!
Open Monday-Thursday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday-Saturday from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sundays from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Named after the owners' hometown of Parma, Italy, this restaurant offers delicious, authentic Northern Italian cuisine, fresh ingredients and simple presentations. The menu features excellent pasta, a popular cold cuts plate and an interesting wine list. You will receive a warm, friendly welcome: a taste of Italian charm in the heart of San Diego. Reservations are recommended.
Open daily from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
MISTER A’S ($$$$)
Mister A's offers impeccable service, fine dining and an extensive wine list. Perched atop a skyscraper on the edge of downtown, the restaurant offers one of San Diego's most outstanding culinary experiences, with an unforgettable view. Enjoy contemporary American cuisine prepared from the finest quality meats and fish. The main dining room offers a premier dining experience, while a more casual selection of dishes is available in the patio and bar. Why not go for drinks and watch the sun set over San Diego?
Open from lunch Monday-Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. For dinner, Monday-Thursday from 5:30 p.m. and Friday-Sunday from 5 p.m. Also serves Sunday brunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and is open for drinks only, Sunday-Thursday from 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Where to sleep ?
- Very Favourable