Top Recommended Layover Activities:
1. Gaslamp Quarter
Downtown, San Diego, CA
This 16 block section of downtown is a national historic district filled with specialty shops, art galleries, and restaurants. Numerous theaters and nightclubs call the Gaslamp Quarter home, so there's plenty to do after the sun sets. It's also an excellent neighborhood to check out some of the city's early Victorian architecture. Downtown, bordered by Broadway, Fourth and Sixth Avenues.
2. Old Town Trolley Tours
San Diego, CA · 619-298-8687
An exciting and fun way to learn over 400 years of San Diego's history and enjoy some of its most treasured sites, including the San Diego Zoo and beautiful Coronado. Tours leave every 30 minutes beginning at 9am and last approximately two hours. After your tour, be sure to take a leisurely stroll around Old Town for a glimpse of San Diego's humble beginnings. Reservations are required for San Diego SEALS and Ghosts and Gravestones tours. ADMISSION: Adult $24, Child 4-12 $12, Children 3 and under free.
Coronado, CA 92118 · 619-437-8788
Description: The city of Coronado is a located on an island-like peninsula just south of San Diego – you can drive via the San Diego-Coronado Bridge, but it’s more convenient to take the ferry from Broadway Pier. Once in Coronado, you’ll find sparkling white beaches and a host of restaurants, quaint shops, and hotels. Most of the activity is centered on the beach-fronting Ocean Drive and on Orange Avenue. The Visitor's Center is at 1100 Orange Ave, 619-437-8788.
Top Weekend Getaways And Day Trip Excursions:
1. San Diego Harbor Excursions
1050 North Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101 · 619-234-4111
Take the ferry to Coronado for a great outing. Hourly departures offer flexibility which may be necessary - once you get to the community of Coronado, you might decide to stay longer. Other possibilities include dinner and brunch cruises, sightseeing tours, and whale watching trips.
2. San Ysidro/Tijuana Blue Line Trolley
San Diego Trolley, San Diego, CA
Although this is not the quickest or most scenic route into Mexico, it is the most convenient and least expensive. You will arrive in Tijuana, where you will find authentic Mexican food as well as colorful souvenirs. Embark at several locations throughout San Diego. The trip takes approximately 40 minutes.
3. Whale Watching - H & M Landing
2803 Emerson St, San Diego, CA 92106 · 619-222-1144
From December through March each year, thousands of gray whales instinctively return to the waters off southern California and Baja Mexico. H & M Landing provides memorable three- and five-hour offshore excursions. This is absolutely the best way to view these majestic creatures up close and personal (they've been known to come right up to the boat). H & M is so sure that you'll see the whales, that if for some reason you do not, they'll take you out again free of charge. Besides whales, you'll also see dolphins, seabirds, and a host of other marine life. Other options are available - fishing trips, multiple day natural science excursions, scuba diving programs, and more.
4. Mission Beach
Ventura Pl, Mission Beach, CA 92109
An excellent way to spend some down-time in San Diego. Enjoy quaint shops, cafes, or the Ocean Front Walk which spans between Mission and Pacific Beaches. Shaved ice (not crushed ice) is a hit in this area. Good people-watching opportunities abound as rollerbladers, cyclists, runners, and sun worshipers are in large supply here.
5. Mount Soledad
Eastern La Jolla, La Jolla, CA
A 43-foot cross stands atop Mount Soledad, along with memorial plaques and pavers dedicated to US military personnel. 822-foot Mount Soledad offers a great view of greater San Diego. Excellent place to have a picnic or to enjoy spectacular sunsets.