Quantcast
X

Best Things To Do in San Diego

San Diego's coastal seat makes it an ideal destination for adventurers. Whether you're hiking along the sandstone cliffs of Torrey Pines State Reserve or walking through the frothy surf of Coronado Beach, you'll find little reason to stray far from the city's natural wonders. Spend a day at Balboa Park the city's definitive culturual hub and soak up the stunning setting while exploring the many museums, theaters and gardens that call this 1,200-acre park home. Though it's tempting to spend your whole vacation exploring, don't forget to carve out some time for a San Diego history lesson: America's Finest City proudly shows off its military and maritime heritage with two well-regarded (and highly interactive) museums.

Expand Map Expand Map
How We Rank Things to Do
#1
Balboa Park Free attraction
Parks and Gardens, Recreation | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 5.0

Why go: Home to the renowned San Diego Zoo, this 1,200-acre park is the city's cultural hub. As one TripAdvisor ... read more»

#2
Mission Beach Free attraction
Beaches, Recreation, Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Overlooking the Pacific Ocean from Mission Bay Park in northwestern San Diego, Mission Beach is one of the most popular ... read more»

#3
Coronado Beach Free attraction
Beaches | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Compared to Mission Beach, this popular shoreline boasts fewer sunbathers and calmer waves. Just across the bay from San Diego ... read more»

#4
Gaslamp Quarter Free attraction
Entertainment and Nightlife, Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: The Gaslamp Quarter's 16 blocks are peppered with Victorian-style buildings that now house a variety of shops, art galleries ... read more»

#5
San Diego Zoo and Safari Park
Zoos and Aquariums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: This 100-acre establishment is one of the most famous zoos in the country, known for its expansive natural habitats. Nearly ... read more»

#6
Torrey Pines State Reserve
Beaches, Hiking, Parks and Gardens | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: This 1,700-acre natural reserve houses and protects numerous types of flora, but particularly the Torrey Pine, one of America ... read more»

#7
Cabrillo National Monument
Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: Rising from the southern tip of Point Loma is where you'll find the Cabrillo National Monument. The statue depicts ... read more»

#8
USS Midway Museum
Museums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: If you're eager to learn about what life is like on a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier, plan to ... read more»

#9
Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Free attraction
Hiking, Recreation, Swimming/Pools | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: You'll need a car to get here, but travelers say the breathtaking views at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park are ... read more»

#10
Maritime Museum of San Diego
Museums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: The Maritime Museum offers a hands-on look at San Diego's days as a bustling seaport. You can tour all ... read more»

#11
SeaWorld San Diego
Amusement Parks, Zoos and Aquariums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 3.5

Why go: Though you can often spot plenty of wildlife in the San Diego Bay, none put on quite as good a ... read more»

Next Steps: San Diego

U.S. News Airfare Finder

Find Best Airfares to
San Diego

See best fares from Orbitz, Expedia, Kayak & more!
Round Trip One-Way Non-stop Only
Please enter missing information