Day 1 - The state’s most laid back city
Just north of the Mexican border, San Diego is the most laid back of California’s big cities and a great place to chill out. It is different to Los Angeles and San Francisco in that it has quieter roads, more sparsely filled streets and (arguably) cleaner air.
If you enjoy exploring new cities you will love San Diego. Downtown San Diego is where the you will find the city’s famed Gaslamp Quarter, home to the majority of restaurants, shops, bars and nightclubs. While you are bound to end up down here on one of your nights in the city, during the day time is when you can appreciate its historic buildings that little bit better.
North of downtown is Balboa Park. This 1,400-acre park is home to a wide range of museums including the San Diego Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Photographic Arts and the National History Museum, one of the most informative and interesting museums in the city.
But if museums aren’t your thing, San Diego Zoo is probably California’s best. Covering a total of 100 acres, this zoo is home to various types of rare animals as well as 6,000 rare types of plants. Some of the rare animals which prove to be extremely popular with visitors include Indonesian Komodo Dragons and Giant Pandas.
As pointed out earlier, the Gaslamp Quarter is the liveliest part of the city once the sun goes down. All around the area’s 16 blocks are sidewalk cafés, open air restaurants, and jazz clubs which are the perfect ingredients for an electric atmosphere and a night to remember.
Day 2 - Make your way down to the beach
San Diego enjoys 70 miles coastline, with some of the state’s best beaches situated in the California’s most southern city. The most popular of these is Mission Beach. This has always been the centre for much activity over the years and is where the famous roller coaster is situated.
Pacific Beach, which is adjacent to Mission Beach, and Ocean Beach are the other two beaches most frequented by sun worshippers and beach lovers. Both have golden sand, and the areas also have lots of restaurants, bars and cafés so once the sun goes down you can hang around for a few more hours to relax.
If big crowds and the most popular spots isn’t your thing, then you should pay a visit to La Jolla which is one of the more ‘upmarket’ beaches in the city and situated north of the more popular beaches. And if not, go to Coronado which is south of Mission and Ocean Beach and is regularly voted as one of the top ten beaches in America.
Day 3 - Pick a theme or go down south
Even though they are extremely commercialised, sometimes you just have to visit the local theme parks, and San Diego definitely has its fair share of them.
The best known of the bunch is Sea World. The words Sea World and San Diego go hand in hand and of its three parks in America, the one in southern California is by far its best known. Some of the Sea World's biggest attractions are the Shamu Adventure, the ‘Shipwreck Rapids’ and the 'Penguin Encounter'.
If you don’t like water and wildlife, well then chances are you won’t like Sea World. Instead, Legoland might be more appealing. But this might not be everyone’s cup of tea either, as it is very much geared towards children.
What will fascinate everyone for a day is a trip south of the border to Tijuana in Mexico. The fact Mexico is so close to San Diego should be taken advantage and it is fascinating to witness the difference between two cities so close to each other.
You may wish to stay in Tijuana for the evening and get drunk on cheap tequila, but if you are looking for a more civil way to spend the evening, visit the theatre once you get back to San Diego. The San Diego Civic Theatre plays host to many travelling musicals and plays. Other large musicals touring are staged at Broadway/San Diego on B St. And for something completely different you may enjoy having something to eat while catching a play at H.I.T. Productions Dinner Theatre @ Shirley’s Kitchen.