Things to Do in San Diego

San Diego Attractions

Whether you have just the weekend or an entire week, there is so much to do in San Diego. Regardless of what time of year you visit, you can always count on beautiful sunsets. See below for the sightseeing and fun activity recommendations.

San Diego Harbor / Waterfront

Little Italy & Farmer's Market (Sat mornings only)

Cabrillo National Monument

Coronado Island

San Diego Zoo / Balboa Park

Liberty Station - coming soon

North Park / South Park - coming soon

Shopping: Fashion Valley Mall - coming soon

San Diego Harbor / Waterfront Area

The harbor is definitely worth spending at least a half day when you are visiting San Diego. The body of the water is the San Diego Bay, and across the bay, you can see the bridge road leading to Coronado Island.

One of the highlights of this area is the USS Midway. Even if you are not a history buff or a Navy enthusiast, this real aircraft carrier turned museum is worth checking out. You can climb on the ship, check out different quarters. There are often Groupon coupons for discount tickets, so be sure to check out the link below to purchase your tickets.




USS Midway Museum

910 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101

10AM - 5PM

Read more about it: USS Midway (CV-41) - Wikipedia


Use this link for discounted tickets

It's also worth checking out the Seaport Village. It's a collection of shops selling knick-knacks, souvenirs and sweet treats. Check out shops like California Candle Gallery for cool hand-dipped candles, Hot Licks where they sell hot sauces of every kind. It is also connected to The Headquarters, which used to be the Police headquarters in the 30s. There is even a police cell jail block that you can check out to see a piece of history. 


If you keep walking down the shoreline, you will reach the famous statue, Unconditional Surrender. The history is that it was an original bronze statue that was installed in Florida in 2005. In 2007, it was moved to San Diego in Tuna Harbor Park on a loan. After it was returned, San Diego fundraised to purchase its own and installed in 2013. 


Finally, to put a cap to a great day, there is a harbor cruise that will take you around the Bay. You can take the one hour or two hour long trip, and if you can take one during sunset you can take some great pictures. There is a Groupon for the tickets usually all around the year, so check out the link below. 


Hornblower Cruiseship

See URBN Compass photos aboard the Hornblower


Use this link for discounted tickets


Little Italy & Sat Farmer's Market

Little Italy is a great neighborhood to spend a morning, an afternoon or an evening. There are many shops and restaurants that are worth checking out.


Some notable restaurants to check out include: Prep Kitchen, Ironside, Barbusa, and Papalecco Gelato. Every Saturday morning from 8am - 2pm, W. Date Street in Little Italy turns into a big outdoor farmer's market. You can sample local food fares, buy fresh produce and flowers, and see unique San Diego souvenirs to take home.


Cabrillo National Monument

Located at the tip of Point Loma, Cabrillo National Monument is located inside a US National Park. It commemorates the statue of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, who was the first European explorer to land on the West Coast of the US. Read the full story here. In addition to the historic statue, you will get a fantastic view of San Diego across the San Diego Bay. There is also a nice trail that you can walk on, which will take you down to the Low Tide Tidepool. Another point of interest is the Ballast Point Light Station. It is not a working light house, but now is a well-preserved museum with interesting historical facts. Since it is a National Park, there is an entrance fee to enter - $15/car or $7/person. The pass is good for 7 days, so you can come back multiple times to enjoy the view.

If you are here until sunset, the view from Fort Rosecrans National Cemetary is also a good place to make a quick stop. It is a federal military cemetery perched up on a hill to give you beautiful sunset colors.


Balboa Park

It is a cultural hub nestled inside of a lush city park. It is where the famous San Diego Zoo is located, but even if you aren't interested in checking out the zoo, there is still a lot of things going on at the park that would justify your visit.

  • Museums: you can buy a museum pass here, but also there are free museums (by donation only) such as Timken Museum of Art

  • Garden: Japanese Friendship Garden is a beautiful and tranquil space. Also, check out the Botanical Garden (free entrance). It's an iconic backdrop to many couples taking their wedding photos

  • Spreckels Organ Pavillion: free concerts on Sundays at 2pm

  • Cabrillo Bridge: entrance into the park. Beautiful walk from Banker's Hill into the park in the evening

  • International Cottages: 34 cottages that showcase different cultures. They are open to visitors on Sat and Sun 12-5pm



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