Before the holidays, my husband and I went to San Diego since he had never been before. We wanted to visit as much as possible during those days but we also wanted some time in the sun.
Day 1 – Downtown
We stayed in the Gaslamp Quarter district because we wanted to be surrounded by tons of shops and great restaurants. We arrived late afternoon so we decided to explore downtown to get to know the area better.
After a walk down 5th Avenue we decided to go for some drinks and appies at Barleymash. We shared this delicious cilantro pesto flatbread and tried some amazing local beers. I personally loved the cream ale called Mother Earth Cali’ Creamin’.
It was a busy night but we were lucky enough to get a table at a great Mexican restaurant called La Puerta. For dinner I had two really tasty tacos while my husband devoured a massive burrito which he said was delicious.
Day 2 – Balboa Park, La Jolla & University Ave.
Our first full day in San Diego started out with a long walk from the hotel to Balboa Park. We could have easily taken a taxi but with the sun out, walking was more appealing.
Balboa Park is quite large even if everything you need to see is in one main area. But if you’ve got the time, there’s a lot to explore. You can visit the San Diego Zoo, the Botanical Building, El Prado, and the Balboa Park Activity Centre to name a few.
From Balboa Park we decided to take a taxi to La Jolla beach. If you go there, be prepared for the intense smell of fish! But also to watch the seals resting on cliffs like kings.
The smell isn’t the most pleasant but after 10 minutes you kind of get used to it. We visited La Jolla Shores Beach, La Jolla Recreation Centre and La Jolla Caves.
It was beautiful but we started to get hungry, so we walked up to Whisknladle. Such a great restaurant with such yummy food! We ordered the insanely big Dutch Pancake, the delicious omelette and the fruit bowl. Yes I had a mimosa with our brunch but can you blame me?
We ended our little adventure in La Jolla and headed to University Ave.
There, I discovered my favourite new store called Pigment! It’s a cute little shop that carries the most amazing things from jewelry to instagrammable home decor. Another cool thing about this shop is its trendy walls.
They have this gorgeous living plant wall and this cool pink wall where it reads “Love more than ever”.
We needed a little snack so we found this beautiful matcha shop called Holy Matcha. I’ve only recently started to enjoy anything matcha so I went all in with a matcha latte and a matcha donut! Really tasty and delicious.
The shop itself was stunning with marble table tops, baby pink velvet seats and a tropical palm tree wall. I mean, if that’s not Instagram worthy I don’t know what is!
We walked down University Ave. for quite a while and then found a cool looking coffee shop so we decided to go in. This shop sold coffee and flowers as well as jewellery and other neat stationary things.
For dinner we were craving Italian and found this family style restaurant called Buca di Beppo. We shared a massive pasta dish which you get to create from the type of pasta, to the sauces and all the extras. Very delicious dinner and would definitely recommend it if you like Italian food.
Day 3 – Old Town & Beaches
For our third day we wanted to do our exploring in the morning so that we could enjoy a bit of beach time in the afternoon. We went to Old Town San Diego. This place was probably one of my favourite places to see in San Diego besides the beaches.
It’s considered the “birthplace” of California and is the site of the first Spanish settlement in California. Because of it’s strong Mexican influences, Old Town is filled with lots of beautiful colours and amazing tile work.
We didn’t get a chance to have lunch there but when I go back it’s on my list! In Old Town you can visit museums that retrace the history, shop at the traditional markets, and eat at any of the Mexican restaurants.
Then, we made our way to Ocean beach for a relaxing afternoon in the sun. Yes it was December, yes the water was probably freezing, but all we did was just lay on the sand enjoying the beautiful weather. After our mini summer session, we walked over to South Beach Bar & Grille for a quick drink and to get another view of the ocean.
We walked from Ocean Beach to Sunset Cliffs to end our short weekend with a beautiful view of the sunset.
There’s not much to say here and the pictures probably won’t do it justice but it was an amazing sunset. Here are a few shots!
All in all, our weekend in San Diego was short but we really enjoyed it. We explored, we ate, we drank, we relaxed in the sun and of course made tons of new memories.
Have any of you ever been to San Diego? What did you enjoy the most? Anything you weren’t so fond of? Let me know down below!
“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.” – Anaïs Win