San Diego Tourism: The Best Things to Do in San Diego

San Diego tourism offers so much to do in and around the city! This is a perfect place to enjoy outdoor activities, so take advantage of this weather by visiting all the beaches and attractions you can. And there are so many fun places to eat in San Diego, but my locals and I managed to pick the best restaurants for you, as well as the best attractions and places to visit.

Best Restaurants in San Diego and Carlsbad

Park 101

Park 101 has everything you may be craving in the sunshine: salads, BBQ, tacos, ice cream, acai bowls, and brunch. Plus, they have kid friendly meals for families and a cozy rooftop lounge with fire pits.

Señor Grubby’s

Just a few blocks from the Carlsbad State Beach, Señor Grubby’s is serving up great tacos and cocktails. And if you arrive before 11:30, you can enjoy their breakfast menu, including chorizo and eggs, huevos rancheros, and a variety of breakfast burritos.

Miss B’s Coconut Club

If you’re looking for that Caribbean beach vibe, Miss B’s Coconut Club is the place to be! Enjoy cocktails and burgers as big as your face, as well as chicken n’ waffles, sandwiches, fresh seafood, and salads.


The restaurant may have an upscale vibe, but this is San Diego – everyone is welcome like family! With a few locations throughout the San Diego area, you can enjoy their oysters, fish tacos, fresh catch of the day, or a surf-and-turf platter.

Beach Hut Deli in Gaslamp Quarter

You’ll find all types of San Diego restaurants in the Gaslamp Quarter, but Beach Hut Deli was one of my favorite fun places to eat in downtown San Diego. Sometimes when you’re a tourist, you just want a good sandwich: one that’s better than homemade, but still has that personal touch.

It’s also one of our recommended restaurants to visit in Sacramento!

Can't go wrong on the beaches of San Diego!

Best Beaches to Visit in San Diego

Carlsbad State Beach

Carlsbad is a suburb of San Diego, and is easily reachable by car. You can spend your day playing beach volleyball or just lay out and enjoy the sunshine. The weather averages in the mid 60’s and some of the best restaurants in Carlsbad San Diego are right near the coastline.

La Jolla

When you visit San Diego, you have to see the barking seals in La Jolla, one of the most popular San Diego tourism attractions in that area. We joke that seals are just puppies of the ocean, but when the Spanish first approached the California shores in the 19th century, they thought the barking seals sounded like wolves.

Belmont Park in San Diego has roller coasters, shopping, food, games, and more!

Mission Beach and Belmont Park

You can easily spend an entire afternoon at Belmont Park at Mission Beach. Belmont Park has carnival rides, shopping, and tons of food options! And depending on when you visit, they also host concerts and special events.

Pacific Beach

For terrific people watching, head down to Pacific Beach. Bicyclists, joggers, roller-bladers, skaters, and power walkers populate the sidewalks, so stay alert! And if you’re concerned about swimming in the big blue, North Pacific Beach (from Tourmaline to Crystal Pier) has swimming areas with lifeguard supervision. The boardwalk is full of colorful people, so throw some shades on and join the party!

Best Things to Do in San Diego

Balboa Park

Balboa Park has all types of San Diego tourism attractions including museums, the Japanese Friendship Garden, performing arts, and the San Diego Zoo. You could spend an entire day at Balboa Park and not see the whole place!

A sculture scene of Bob Hope performing for the troops

USS Midway Museum

The USS Midway Museum has on-going installations as well as seasonal events and temporary exhibits. Although the USS Midway was commissioned a week after the end of World War II, the aircraft carrier played a large role during the Cold War, and was decommissioned in 1992.

Throughout the museum (which is in the ship), you can learn about the daily life of the crew and sit in a cockpit of a WWII era aircraft. On special occasions, you can attend a concert or a screening of the 80s classic Top Gun. And if you want a really immersive, unique experience, they also host youth and family overnight programs!

Check out more related videos below to plan your perfect California vacation!


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