Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Where To Stay In San Diego

San Diego Geography Overview

3 of the Best Places to Stay in San Diego to Relax and Still Have Fun | Well Spent | Travel Leisure

San Diego covers a lot of land, with county lines stretching all the way through Anza-Borrego State Park on the east. That said, for visitors, the best neighborhoods in San Diego to visit and stay in are generally along the coast. In addition to the beaches which is why most people choose to visit San Diego! most of the main sights are located closer to the coast.

A section of the southern coastal area is where most of the sights people associate with San Diego are located. Here, you have Balboa Park, the San Diego Zoo, the USS Midway, the Coronado Bridge, Hotel del Coronado, Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy, and more . With all of this in mind, if youre visiting San Diego for the first time, youll likely want to stay closer to this area if hitting up these iconic spots is important to you.

The northern coastal area of the county has fewer must-see sights compared to south county, but there are still lots of great beach towns that are fun to visit. Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, and Del Mar each have lively town centers with lots of excellent restaurants, bars, cafes, and shops. Since they have a lot to offer on their own and since theyre just steps away from the beach these areas are still popular for tourists.

Where To Stay In San Diego For Families

If you’re traveling with toddlers or kids, you’ll find plenty of family-friendly resorts in San Diego. But if SeaWorld is your main destination, consider staying at Mission Bay, about 12 minutes by car from the famous marine park and only a few minutes’ drive from Balboa Park.

Overlooking the calm waters of Mission Bay, the Polynesian-themed Catamaran Resort Hotel & Spa is a fun-filled destination for families with kids of all ages. Koi ponds, tiki torches, and waterfalls add to the tropical feel, and multiple on-site restaurants cater to fussy eaters.

Take the kids kayaking or stand up paddleboarding off the private beach, bike around the waterfront trails, or splash in the outdoor pool. All rooms come with private patios or balconies, and the best rooms for families here come with .

A little farther out, the moderately-priced Homewood Suites by Hilton San Diego-Del Mar, in Torrey Hills, is also popular with families. Legoland is about a 20-minute drive north, and family-friendly destinations, such as La Jolla, SeaWorld, San Diego Zoo, and Torrey Pines Reserve are a short drive away.

This is an especially good option for families who want the option of cooking their own meals, as the suites come with fully-equipped kitchens. Kids love the heated outdoor pool and whirlpool, and the rates include a complimentary shuttle within a five-mile radius during certain hours, a hot breakfast, and a light evening dinner Monday through Thursday.

Where To Stay In Downtown San Diego

Pendry San Diego

Pendry San Diego is San Diegos high-end boutique hotel that has a beautiful pool deck with cabanas, a social club , fantastic urban coastal California decor and great restaurants. This lifestyle and entertainment hub that attracts a broad demographic from families to retirees. Book a Virtuoso rate online.

THE US GRANT, a Luxury Collection Hotel

The US Grant is an iconic Starwood Luxury Collection hotel that was built by the son of President Ulysses S. Grant over 100 years ago. Rooms have been refurbished with chic art and comfortable, contemporary decor that blends a bit of new with a grand tradition. Note that there isnt a pool and spa treatments are in-room. Book a Virtuoso rate online .

InterContinental San Diego

The InterContinental San Diego is a 400-room property that incorporates the vivacity of downtown San Diegos most vibrant neighborhoods with the soothing waters of the San Diego Bay into decor and offerings. Five distinct dining venues overlook the water, including Del Friscos Double Eagle Steakhouse, a signature lobby-level restaurant with an open kitchen, a rooftop bar, pool bar, and café. Its one of our newest big downtown San Diego hotels.

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Where To Stay In San Diego: Complete Guide To The 4 Best Areas

San Diego is one of the most laid back cities weve ever been to. Its a popular vacation destination for people who want to soak up all the beach vibes, but its also a thriving city with plenty of things to do. And, as one resident loves to point out, the second most breweries per capita in the United States. No matter what you like to do on vacation, you will find it here. It has championship golf courses, plenty of craft beer, amazing farmers markets, family-friendly attractions, and museums. Oh, and the beaches, obviously. I have traveled to San Diego many times, at different stages in my life, and I have always found myself saying ah, well have to do that next time.

My favorite thing about San Diego is it has so many locally-owned bars, restaurants, and cafes, so every time I visit, there is something new and unique to try thanks to its growing population and economy.

San Diego is a relatively compact city, but deciding on where to stay in San Diego is an important decision. It will shape the type of trip you have, and you should choose a neighborhood that is central to the things you want to do. Otherwise, you will find yourself spending too much of your precious vacation time sitting in traffic.

This detailed guide to the 4 best areas to stay in San Diego will help you figure out which neighborhood is best for your particular style and budget.

Below, youll find:

Sound good? Heres everything you need to know to choose where to stay in San Diego.

Where To Stay In San Diego California

The Ultimate San Diego Travel Guide  The Blonde Abroad

San Diego is a pretty big city, but it is split up into many smaller neighborhoods, which makes it easier to navigate. Each of the San Diego neighborhoods that we recommend to tourists has a unique vibe and feel to them. Depending on your itinerary and personal preferences, well help you find the best place to stay in San Diego.

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Frequently Asked Questions About San Diego

Where is the best area to stay in San Diego without a car?

The best area to stay in San Diego without a car is the Downtown , as the attractions and hotels all are within walking distance. Here you can stay at the Andaz San Diego, one of the best hotels in the city.

What is the nicest part of San Diego?

Each area is different, here is a quick break down: Downtown: awesome urban vibes stay in Andaz LaJolla: for beaches and outdoors stay in Hyatt Regency Coronado: most quiet spot stay in Mission Bay: great place for families stay in Blue Sea Beach

Should I stay in La Jolla or San Diego?

Although La Jolla is considered an independent area, technically, its still in San Diego, just an hour away by public transport. San Diego best for the urban side of a city La Jolla if you prefer beaches and nature spots

Which accommodation in San Diego is good for couples?

Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa and El Cordova are located in Coronado, the best area to stay in San Diego, CA for couples. They offer amazing services and have romantic spots.

What hotels in San Diego have nice views?

Andaz San Diego and Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa are the hotels in Downtown San Diego which have the best views, no matter what time it is.

I know there are tons of amazing hotels here are my top two favorites both located in Downtown & Gaslamp Quarter

Have a good trip,

La Jolla: Best Luxury Coastal Spot

If youre trying to decide where to stay for your first time in San Diego, La Jolla is one of your best options. This popular coastal town is great for visitors, because you have easy access to some of the most beautiful beaches in the county. La Jolla is also centrally located, so you can easily explore both downtown and the northern coastal towns.

In addition to the gorgeous coastline, La Jolla is known for having a ton of excellent eateries, bars, cafes, and shops, particularly in the Village of La Jolla. While it does skew more upscale, there are still some great casual options, too.

Pros of Staying in La Jolla

  • Centrally Located: La Jolla is one of the best neighborhoods in San Diego for visitors, because its right in the middle of the coastal towns to the north and downtown to the south. This makes it easy to access all areas of coastal San Diego.
  • Beach Access: There are a lot of great beaches that you can access in La Jolla, each of which offer their own unique benefits.
  • Lots of Excellent Eateries, Bars, and Cafes: Youll have no problem finding a place to eat or grab a drink when staying in La Jolla.
  • Walkable: La Jolla is incredibly easy to walk around. Explore neighborhoods, the central shopping and dining area, or walk along the paths that line the coast.

Cons of Staying in La Jolla

La Jolla Highlights

Places to Stay in La Jolla

La Valencia Hotel
Pantai Inn
Grande Colonial
Estancia La Jolla

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Where To Stay In Point Loma & Ocean Beach


  • USA Hostels Ocean Beach The colorful, hippie-friendly USA Hostels Ocean Beach is the place to stay if you are looking for some seriously budget accommodation and a social place to stay. Choose from an affordable dorm bed or private room and then get chatting to your fellow travelers. SeaWorld is a couple of miles away, but nearer, less than a 10-minute walk away, is the beautiful Ocean Beach Park. Youll get free shuttles to transport hubs while you stay here, as well as all the social perks you get from staying at a fun hostel!
  • Humphreys Half Moon Inn The lovely Humphreys Half Moon Inn features beautiful rooms with wooden shuttered windows in a stylish yet calm beach house with a tropical design. These boast substantial flatscreen TVs, microwaves, coffeemakers, and even their own patios. Enjoy international cuisine at the on-site restaurant, splash around in the outdoor pool complete with bar, of course or rent a kayak or paddleboard and enjoy the seaside setting. Location-wise, this hotel is conveniently placed near San Diego International Airport, which is useful if youre flying in or out early.

Mission Bay And Mission Beach

Couple downsizes home twice to save enough to stay in San Diego, live closer to amenities

Mission Bay is a humanmade bay that is popular for water sports and waveless beaches. Its also where SeaWorld San Diego is located.

When choosing a hotel on Mission Bay, its important to note how far of a walk or drive it is to Mission Beach. Some Mission Bay hotels require driving around the bay to the beach, which can take 10-15 minutes and then youre stuck with having to park a car at the beach .

Mission Beach is the ocean beach on the west side of the bay. Our seaside amusement park, Belmont Park, is here as is the start of a fun beach boardwalk to bike, rollerskate and walk down to Pacific Beach. Youll pass many homes, bars, restaurants, and vendors along the way.

Best for:

  • Casual travelers who arent looking for fine dining.
  • Those who prefer calm bay beaches.
  • Travelers who want both bay and ocean beaches.
  • Beach volleyball players .
  • Those looking for a vacation rental .
  • Families who are only going to SeaWorld San Diego or visiting the park for multiple days.
  • Water sports enthusiasts.

Not a Fit For:

  • Luxury travelers should avoid this area completely as all hotels have very mixed reviews and are three- or four-star at best. The vacation homes, however, can be quite nice.

Getting there: The ride from San Diego Airport takes just over 15 minutes.

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Where To Stay In San Diego: 9 Best Areas

Today I will be looking at where to stay in San Diego for first-time tourists and outlining the best areas to stay. So, if youre planning a trip but cant decide where to stay, I highly suggest reading on. By the end of this article, you will feel more familiar with the best places for nightlife, budget, families, beaches.

Settled in 1769, San Diego is the second-largest city in California and the 8th largest in the entire US. Despite that, a lot less is known about it than its neighbor, Los Angeles, which can make it challenging for first-time visitors to know where to stay.

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Before we begin, I want to give you some tips and info. These will be things that you need to consider if you want to ensure you select the perfect destination for you and your needs.

For example, if you prioritize staying near the beach while youre away, neighborhoods in San Diego like Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, and Ocean Beach will be your best choices. If its the history of the city youre after, Mission Valley and Downtown San Diego, specifically its Gaslamp Quarter and Little Italy neighborhoods, will be your best bet. You might even just want a more isolated area for a relaxing break, such as Point Loma or La Jolla.

If you keep things like these, as well as other similarly important issues, in mind while reading, it will make settling on a location as quick and easy as possible.

What To Do In Hillcrest

Eat. Shop. Drink. Repeat! Hillcrests community feel and endless good vibes make it the perfect place to brunch the day away, stock up on some unique local souvenirs and bar crawl once the sun goes down. And the best thing? The diversity of this burb means theres thousands of different experiences to have while youre here.

First up, take a snap with the historic neon Hillcrest sign, then decide on your budget and hit the shops. Whether you want to scour through vintage threads, designer boutiques or cheap and cheerful craft stalls, Hillcrests streets and plazas are a shopaholics dream, no matter what youre searching for. Visit Codys for little home decorations and Footnote Books to see an incredible collection of well-looked-after reads.

Feel like a bit of beauty therapy? Youll find loads of salons and barbers here too, so its the perfect place for a mid-adventure trim or style. We recommend Detour Salon for gals and Winns Barbershop for the lads. And if youre a bit of a culture vulture, Landmark Theatres is home to an excellent show list of indie and foreign films.

Aside from everything going on inside the neighbourhood, Hillcrests location is ideal for exploring San Diegos stunning Balboa Park, the largest urban park in the USA. Boasting over 1,200 acres of gardens, 16 museums, multiple performing arts venues and a Spanish arts village, you can see it all by foot, by a trolley tour or even by Segway.

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Ocean Beach: The Best Area In San Diego To Chill Out

Ocean Beach or OB is a suburb so chill you can basically feel your heart rate drop as you drive in, with endless casual eateries, yoga studios and boho boutiques nestled in between the palm trees that line the main street. Its about as close to a classic 60s SoCal beach town that youll get these days, with flip-flopping locals strolling down the sidewalk, surfers crossing the road with their boards and VW Kombi vans parked up to watch the sunset.

Ocean Beach is much smaller than its northern neighbour PB, and its home to just two main beach spots, the Pier and Dog Beach, plus some chilled out dining options, a thriving nightlife scene and a couple of decent shopping streets. Spend your days soaking up the sun, catching waves or making friends with local pups, before searching for the best fish tacos and craft breweries at night.

With easy access to the rest of the city by bus, bike or e-scooter, and small enough to be explored on foot, OB is a great option for anyone looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the tourist spots and Downtown.

Point Loma Where To Stay In San Diego For A Honeymoon

Best Areas to stay in San Diego, California

Our final destination of Point Loma is a seaside town located on a peninsula in the very south of the city. Often described as where California began, it features everything from national monuments and cemeteries to a university and major military bases.

Perhaps the most famous attraction in the neighborhood is the Old Point Loma Lighthouse. Located at the very southern tip of the peninsula, it was completed in 1854 and is often used as the icon to represent all of San Diego. Listed on the National Register Of Historic Places, it is a great place to mix culture, art, history and stunning views in a single trip.

Also, while were on the subject of the National Register Of Historic Places, the lighthouse isnt the only attraction in the area to make the cut. The Cabrillo National Monument, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Historic District, Naval Training Center San Diego, and Rosecroft estate and gardens provide ample options for those who want to learn more about the area during their stay.

It is also recognized as the National Landmark Of Soaring by the National Soaring Museum, due to the many records that have been compiled around the area. Plaques denoting the accomplishments can be found near the aforementioned Cabrillo monument.

Due in part to its slightly more isolated location, it is a much quieter area, where you will often find a slightly more exclusive feel. This has led to it drawing a clientele that is looking for a much more sophisticated experience.

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