San Diego is one of the top travel destinations in the U.S. thanks to its amazingly comfortable year-round weather, its long list of attractions, and its location that places travelers close to many other popular cities in California. This is why there are so many premium and luxury rentals available for travelers visiting the city, and why it should appear on your list of must-see domestic locations in the U.S. this year.
A Two-Day Exploration
While you might be enjoying a much longer visit to San Diego, the fact that your luxury villa is likely to be packed with first-class amenities may make it your favorite spot to stay during the journey. With options that put you along the waterfront or surround you with beautiful design and décor and an almost endless array of things to do, your villa could be your one-stop holiday destination.
Yet, you really do want to head out into the area and experience the locations and attractions that experts choose as the very best. We recommend a two-day itinerary that could fill your weekend and then let you kick back and enjoy your stay in the villa. The top spots include:
Start your experience of San Diego with a bit of a blast from the past and head to Old Town. It is the original downtown area, and what many consider the birthplace of the state of California. It was here that the very first West Coast settlement by Spanish missionaries was built and where some of the most historical sites are found.
Spend a bit of time learning more about the area at the Old Town State Historic Park, the famous Whaley House (a notoriously haunted mansion), and several other museums. And then start hitting the shops. The Old Town is a great place to find all kinds of unique specialty shops and eateries as well as lots of themed walking tours, including some dedicated to tacos and tequila!
After Old Town, it is time to head to Balboa Park, a huge urban park full of different buildings, gardens, and parklands. Explore one of the hiking trails, and many find the Air and Space Museum, as well as the Japanese Friendship Garden the most appealing spots. You should find out about a Go San Diego Card if you intend to spend a lot of time in the Balboa Park area since it allows you access to many of the sites in the area, as well as other parts of town.
Lastly, we suggest you spend a portion of your day at the famous San Diego Zoo. Some travelers may find that an entire day here is not enough to take in the sights – particularly if traveling with kids, but a full afternoon and early evening wandering the premises may be just the trick.
This is another day to be spent outdoors in some of the area’s top sights, and it begins around sunrise with a hike in Torrey Pines State Reserve. With a beach nearby, it is a two thousand acre natural park with a fantastic beach trail offering access to the cliffs and the waters below. Once you are done there, it is an easy matter to head to La Jolla.
The Beach at La Jolla is an essential stop and is a great spot to explore the area’s sea caves or to visit the Children’s Pool and spot some seals (and if you are there in the second half of the year, it is seal pup season and you’ll love looking for the fuzzy seal babies that enjoy the shallow waters). If you are eager to master the art of surfing, this is your spot to book a lesson and enjoy the safest waves.
It is a good idea to pack a picnic if you intend to pay a visit. Why? While you can head to many different eateries along the sands, most people find themselves thoroughly enchanted by the La Jolla Beach area and end up staying for most of the day. If that is what you choose, it is also a good idea to plan to spend time near the Sunset Cliffs area. This is where many people head to take in at least one sunset before the end of their visit.
Many locals head to this area to take in the flawless sunset, so be sure you take their cues and bring along a picnic and a blanket to tote with you as you walk the cliffs and find your ideal sunset spot!
More to See and Do
If you intend to head out from your luxury San Diego villa each day of your visit, you can split up the choices here, but you can also add the following spots to your list:
- Belmont Park – A famous seaside amusement park with old-fashioned rides and lots of fun foods
- Fashion Valley Mall – This is an open-air mall and the largest in the city. Full of premium brands and designer names, it lets you meet the needs of your retail itch while remaining outdoors and in the glorious weather
- Gaslamp Quarter – If you intend to be out at night, this is a perfect spot for music, bars, dining, and clubs. It is also home to many gorgeous Victorian buildings.
- Little Italy and North Park – Both areas are also great for those looking for a bit of something to do at night, though you won’t find the clubs you will in Gaslamp Quarter. Instead, you’ll find cultural venues, restaurants, and parks.
- Seaport Village – This 14-acre waterfront area is full of entertainment, shopping, and dining, and is part of the larger Marina District. You are within easy reach of the USS Midway and the Gaslamp Quarter from here.
Don’t forget to walk Coronado Bridge to the island and pay a visit to the hotel. Take time at the beach and then visit the many eateries of the Ferry Landing Marketplace!
As you can see, there is so much to see and do in San Diego that two days is hardly enough. Enjoy time at your villa but be sure you head out and see this city’s wonderful sites.