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Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

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Baltimore, MD
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Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

Two adults are staying at Ocean Park Inn for five nights and will have a car. We're open to suggestions for sights and dinners. We are planning on Balboa Park and museums there, also the Contemporary in La Jolla. What other sights or events should we focus on (cultural, art, history, scenic)? We're open for suggestions for dinners --- plus features include water view, seafood, eclectic menus, small and/or funky locals hangouts Thanks.

Milwaukee...
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1. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

I am visiting two weeks later for the first time and I would love to hear people's suggestions too!

2. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

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Chula Vista...
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3. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

Welcome to San Diego!

I think you'll enjoy your first visit--it's a great place.

Balboa Park certainly has a lot to offer with its museums and other attractions. One area of the park that's a little out of the way is the Spanish Art Village, where you can find lots of local artists working in their studios.

http://www.spanishvillageart.com/

Within the park is a very good restaurant called The Prado that's open for lunch and dinner.

cohnrestaurants.com/menu-restaurants/…

You can get a feel for early San Diego by visiting Old Town and the Old Town State Historical Park. It's very much influenced by the Spanish and Mexican origins of the city. There are tons of shops and restaurants and can be just a tad on the touristy side, but still worth some time there.

http://www.oldtownsandiegoguide.com/

Nearby is the Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala, the first Spanish mission in California.

http://www.missionsandiego.com/

One of my favorite places here is Cabrillo National Monument at the end of Point Loma. It's commemorates where Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo first landed in San Diego in 1542, and has an amazing view of San Diego Harbor and the Pacific Ocean. Note that it closes at 5 PM, so it's better to go earlier in the day.

http://www.nps.gov/cabr/index.htm

Near Downtown are the Maritime Museum and the USS Midway Museum. If you have any interest at all in what it's like aboard an aircraft carrier, the USS Midway is the place to go.

http://www.midway.org/

For dining, there's a gazillion restaurants in the Gaslamp District downtown or in Little Italy.

http://www.gaslamp.org/

http://www.littleitalysd.com/

A trip across the harbor on the Coronado Bridge to Coronado would be in order. Coronado has a beautiful beach and the famous Hotel del Coronado.

You can take the Coronado Ferry between downtown San Diego and Coronado for $8.50 for a round trip. It's a pretty inexpensive little harbor cruise that lasts about 15-20 minutes in each direction.

http://coronadoferrylandingshops.com/

There are some restaurants at the ferry landing with great harbor views of the San Diego skyline.

Of course, there's always the San Diego Zoo and Seaworld as well.

If you don't mind driving an hour or so, there are the wineries in Temecula that you may enjoy checking out, and east of San Diego is the small mining town of Julian and Mt. Laguna.

I hope that gives you some ideas on things to see and do.

4. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

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5. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

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San Diego...
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6. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

I'm sure others can tell you about restaurants in Pacific Beach. There are some good water view restaurants in La Jolla that others can tell you about as well. I'll offer some suggestions for Little Italy. Have a look and see if they fit what you're looking for.

Craft & Commerce

http://www.craft-commerce.com/

Davanti

http://www.davantisandiego.com/

The Waterfront

http://www.waterfrontbarandgrill.com/

For water view you might like to sit in the bar or on the patio of the Fish Market in downtown San Diego

http://www.thefishmarket.com/locations.aspx

There's a Prep Kitchen in La Jolla & Little Italy

http://prepkitchen.com/la-jolla

Menu

http://www.sdmealz.com/

For some cultural / performing arts activities:

La Jolla Playhouse

http://www.lajollaplayhouse.org/sam-bendrix

http://www.sandiegomuseumcouncil.org/

The Old Globe in Balboa Park

http://www.oldglobe.org/

https://sdrep.org/main.html

The Civic Center downtown

sdboxoffice.com/civic-theatre-tickets.php

7. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

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San Diego
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8. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

I don't suggest tours for folks who have rental cars. It is so easy to get around on your own!! In addition to the Contemporary Art museum in La Jolla you need time to see the scenery along the ocean there a few blocks away.

You'll see the rocky cove filled coast line with seals and sea birds in their native habitat. A little farther north along Torrey Pines Road you can also visit the Torrey Pines Gliderport and watch them take off from the cliffs. IF you like you can also take the outdoor sculpture walk on campus at the Univ. of Ca. San Diego. There are many good places to eat which offer views in La Jolla. They include George's California Modern and Brockton Villa right at La Jolla Cove( near the art museum) . The Gliderport has a nice cafe for light meals and above La Jolla Shores there's also Caroline's for lunch and the Marine Room or The Shores .

Another place for views and Calif. history is Cabrillo National Monument.

Take a walk in our Ocean Beach neighborhood for that back to the 60s feeling. There is a Farmer's Market there every Wed. evening or try the Mercado in Little Italy every Saturday. Great local color/food/etc.

San Diego...
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9. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

Visiting OB is a good idea. I just spent the last 12 days dog sitting for my sister in Pt Loma. I spend a good amount of time in OB. It's funky and gritty and even though I have been there hundreds of times I went to places I hadn't been before. And, I don't know, but it just seemed like every shop I went into everyone was just so dang friendly and happy ... Really. Went into 3 dog wash places looking for a treat for one of the dogs and each place told me to go to the next one to see if they had it. One even got on the computer to see if they had ever carried it. Discovered a place with the best Grinder sandwich and small personal pizza - they make their own dough - and inexpensive. Kept giving me samples of everything. Just an example of the places I went. Yes, I saw my share of homeless and/or scruffy but that's life and OB has always been that way and thankfully they haven't changed too much with time. And parking is free!

Went to South Beach Bar & Grill and had their Fish Taco HH special for $2.95 (cash only). It's a true dive bar and I enjoyed sitting in the window looking at the pier and the Fish Taco was so darn good. I started off trying to eat the taco with my hands but ended up with a knife and fork and ate every bit of it and it was IMO large. But I am a light eater. It was a very hot day and left as soon as I ate (no a/c).

When I was leaving to come home today I had to stop and get another Grinder and small pizza.

And definitely visit Cabrillo National Monument in Pt Loma. The most incredible views! Plus hiking and tidepools.

With your own car I agree that taking a tour may not make sense. It's really easy to get around San Diego with a car. And do try to make a visit to Coronado. Free parking at the Ferry Landing and if you go to the Village and where the historic and beautiful Hotel del Coronado is you can park for free a couple of blocks off of Orange Ave in the residential.

Edited: 26 September 2012, 12:45
San Diego...
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10. Re: Ideas for first San Diego visit Oct 8-13

Also in OB is the 3rd Corner

http://www.the3rdcorneroceanbeach.com/