Frommer's Favorite San Diego Experiences
buildings that fill a 161/2-block area will make you think you've stepped back in time. The beautifully restored buildings, in the heart of downtown, house some of the city's most popular shops, restaurants, and nightspots.
calm waters, paved paths, and friendly neighbors make Mission Bay an aquatic playground like no other. Explore on land or water, depending on your energy level, then grab a bite at funky Mission Cafe. usually don't like organ music, you might enjoy these outdoor concerts and the crowds they draw-San Diegans with their parents, their children, and their dogs. The music, enhanced by the organist's commentary, runs the gamut from classical to contemporary. Concerts start at 2pm. custom of afternoon tea is dignified and old-fashioned at the U.S. Grant Hotel, cozy and Victorian at the Horton Grand, and elegantly charming at the grand Hotel Del Coronado. Take your pick. San Diego Harbor and provides some of the best views of the city. The ferry runs every hour from the Broadway Pier, so you can tour Coronado on foot, by bike, or by trolley, and return whenever you please. there's always an adrenaline rush as you follow this engineering marvel's dramatic curves and catch a glimpse of the panoramic view to either side. Driving west, you can easily pick out the distinctive Hotel Del in the distance long before you reach the "island." was originally named for the toddlers who could safely frolic behind a man-made seawall. These days, the sand is mostly off-limits to humans, who congregate along the seawall railing or onshore to admire the protected pinnipeds who sun themselves on the beach or on semi-submerged rocks. You can get surprisingly close, and it's a truly mesmerizing sight. costs a mere $2.50, takes only 40 minutes, and the clean, quick trolleys are fun in their own right. Once in Tijuana, load up on colorful souvenirs and authentic Mexican food. downtown in a historic Gaslamp Quarter building, Croce's celebrates the life of musician Jim Croce and showcases the city's jazz musicians. experience. Excellent sunset-watching spots include the Mission Beach and Pacific Beach boardwalks, as well as the beach in Coronado in front of the Hotel del Coronado. At La Jolla's Windansea Beach, wandering down to the water at dusk, wineglass in hand, is a nightly neighborhood event. plethora of places to enjoy lattes, espressos, and cappuccinos, but the coffeehouses in La Jolla serve them up with special panache. For some favorites, see the "Java Joints in La Jolla" box in chapter 6. throughout the area sell the bountiful harvest of San Diego County. For directions, see chapter 9. places to stroll. One of our favorites, along the waterfront from the Convention Center to the Maritime Museum, affords views of aircraft carriers, tuna seiners, and sailboats. they serve lobster with rice, beans, tortillas, and freshly made salsa; it's an affordable and deliciously filling meal. See chapter 11. passengers over the golf courses and luxury homes north of the city. These rides are especially enjoyable at sunset. For details, see chapter 11. between March and August, and the locals love to be there. To find the date of the next run, pick up a free tide chart at a surf shop or consult the daily newspaper.