Visiting San Diego in 2 weeks. Where should I go and what should I do?

Hi everyone,
I’m going to be visiting San Diego in about 2 weeks and I’ll have about a week to wander. Other than the places listed in the San Diego guide, what else would you recommend? I will not have a car and was planning on walking (I can walk a lot), public transportation and taxis/uber/etc., to get around. What should I check out? What neighborhoods would you recommend?
A little about me:

  • Avid reader (I’m a librarian),
  • Old punk,
  • Hiker,
  • I like food and beer,
  • Museums and learning are fun for me,
    Any help is appreciated.

Welcome! San Diego is pretty amazing - it may be tricky getting around without a car, but it’s doable (we do have the trolley and other transit, and uber/lyft, and byrd scooters and bikes all over). Let me see what I can suggest based on your bullets. :slight_smile:

  • Balboa Park and its museums could easily take up a whole day, without including the zoo, etc. Tons of museums (some are free and there’s a museum pass available), and the buildings are beautiful and historic (from the 1915 World’s Fair). If you go on a Sunday, there’s a free organ concert, little “cultural cottages” and the Spanish Village has great little art studios. Plus, the zoo is right there and tons of hiking trails and gardens (including a tea house).
  • Old Town is fun - a state park that dates from our days as part of Mexico, and lots of neat little shops and restaurants.
  • hiking is EVERYWHERE here but might be tough to get to without transportation - people rave about hiking to Potato Chip Rock.
  • Breweries all over town! Plenty of craft beer to quench your thirst.
  • farmer’s market/street fairs pretty much every day and they usually have great street food too. Saturday’s market in Little Italy is my favorite, and Weds night in Ocean Beach (aka “OB”) is hippie-tastic and great people watching
  • or just pick a different beach every day - each one has a different culture to experience
  • inland, you can peruse Mission Hills, Hillcrest, South Park.
  • take the trolley to Mexico (if you have your passport, and depending on covid restrictions). You can take the trolley right to the border and walk across.
  • Food… tons of great seafood (San Diego was founded by tuna fishermen) - tuna, halibut, sea urchins (we ship them all over the world). Local specialties would definitely include fish tacos (fried or grilled), carne asada, or after a lot of beer, carne asada fries.

That should keep you busy for a while! Have fun!


Just seeing this post now, so you may already be in S.D. Of course the iconic San Diego Zoo; Definitely drive to Coronado, park on the street and go hang out at the famous Hotel Del Coronado. You can pack up some beach gear, change in the hotel’s public bathroom, and rent beach umbrellas for a nominal price. Afterward, go to the hotel’s outdoor restaurant and have lunch, snack, dinner, drink, etc. Stay long enough for the fabulous sunset. It’s an amazing hotel full of history. The movie “Some Like it Hot” was filmed there.
Get in the car and drive to LaJolla. It’s beautiful. My favorite beach is in DelMar, where there are also great restaurants. Also, Torrey Pines is great. If you’re into hang gliding, that’s the place to go. While you’re near LaJolla, check out the race track. It’s super fun and you don’t have to bet if you don’t want to. A great sushi restaurant is Riki Sushi in North Park.
Another great day trip is Scripps Aquarium near LaJolla. The views are great.
Enjoy your trip!
Oh, sorry, I obviously didn’t read your post carefully enough, as I missed the “no car” portion. If you have a driver’s license, rental cars are cheap and definitely worth it so you can see more places, like what I suggested above.


See USS Midway Musuem, Old Town, La Jolla area
Tijuana area, Seaworld park, sample local cuisine.


I’m sure it’s too late now, but I hope you did give Coronado a good look. Not only is the beach exceptional, but Coronado has its own brewery, and in the middle of town stands the library. The original entrance (now a reading room) is worth a look – be sure to look up, around the walls – and the mural behind the check-out desk is a wonder. Walk up a block on Orange Ave. (the main street) and the police station, a complete architectural surprise, will be on your right.