San Diego, California

San Diego was established in 1775 as the first Spanish mission in California. San Diego is a city in San Diego County in Southern California. The San Diego area can be an incredible place to visit almost any time of the year. With temperatures near the ocean of around 75 degrees (24°C) most of the time, the climate is ideal. The climate of Southern California is rather complex, however, and temperatures change rapidly as one travels from the coast eastward. In the summer during the day, the temperature might increase as much as one degree Fahrenheit for each mile going east. In the winter, especially at night, eastern areas are usually relatively cooler.

San Diego has a strong Mexican influence due to its proximity to the international border between the United States and Mexico. In addition, San Diego has other significant immigrant communities. Older immigrant groups include those from Sicily and Portugal, which settled in Little Italy and Point Loma respectively.

Given its ethnic and cultural mix, it is not surprising that San Diego has a wide range of cuisines. One can find Mexican, Italian, French, Spanish, Greek, Latin, German, Indian, Central and East Asian, Middle Eastern and Pacific Islander food throughout the city. In addition, there are numerous seafood restaurants and steakhouses. The city's long history and close proximity to Mexico has endowed the area with an extensive variety of Mexican restaurants. Regional homemade specialties, border fare and haute cuisine are all readily available.

San Diego's warm, dry climate and access to the ocean have also made it a center for fishing and for the growing of fruit and vegetables. Long a center of the tuna industry, San Diego benefits from an abundant supply of seafood

things to do in San Diego:

San Diego Zoo
Possibly the premier zoo in North America, the San Diego Zoo encompasses over 100 acres of displays and habitats. Animal shows run constantly, and there are creatures here that aren't visible in any other zoo on the planet. Definitely worth a visit, but you need a full day to really do it justice.

Wild Animal Park
The sister park to the San Diego Zoo. The park is located about 30 miles north of San Diego, and cover 1800 acres.

Seaworld near San Diego, meet Shamu and almost get drowned in the Soak Zone.

Balboa Park
A large urban park that is home to many museums, including the San Diego Museum of Art, the Museum of a Man, etc. This park is also home to world's largest pipe organ.
Harbor seals, Children's Cove, La Jolla. A small beach built for children, now filled each day with furry lumps of blubber.

Hotel Del Coronado
Gorgeous hotel constructed in the late 1800's. Offers high class shops and service on one of San Diego's most beautiful and clean beaches. Take the Coronado bridge from downtown, the same bridge Baxter was booted off of in the comedy "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy"

California gray whales migrate south along the coast each February.

Scuba diving
San Diego has some great dives including the Yukon, Ruby E and others in Wreck Alley, kelp beds and much more. In addition several dive boat operators have regular runs to the Coronados Islands off the Mexican coast where you can dive with sea lions. Please be aware that diving here is usually considered cold water diving and the visibility is not always the greatest.

Visit La Jolla
A coastal community of San Diego which includes secluded coves, beaches and ocean cliffs to explore. There are dozens of coffee shops, restaurants and high-end shopping outlets to be had in La Jolla.

At the edge of cliffs towering above the Pacific Ocean, the Torrey Pines Glider Port in La Jolla allows anyone to soar over one of the most pristine sections of coastline in southern California. Training and tandem glides with an expert are offered.

San Diego Maritime Museum
San Diego is steeped in nautical history and the Maritime Museum chronicles that history. Located across from the US Navy's North Island Naval Air Station (offering panoramic views of navy air craft carriers) the museum is home to a collection of 19th century sailing ships and the B-39, a former Soviet Union attack submarine.

USS Midway Museum
Located just a short walk from the San Diego Maritime Museum is the USS Midway (CV-41), a former aircraft carrier of the US Navy. The Midway is home to a collection of former naval aircraft housed on her expansive flight deck. Guided tours and displays offer the public a unique look into the life aboard and of a powerful old warhorse.

Old Town San Diego
Stepping into Old Town is taking a trip into the past. Preserved buildings and icons of the Spanish heritage of San Diego and the Old West will amaze visitors. From 19th century cannons to the haunted Whaley house there is much to explore and see in Old Town. Shopping and restaurants dot this historic district and living history performances help to make the past come alive.

Point Loma Lighthouse, Cabrillo National Monument
From the sky high vantage point of Point Loma visitors can get the picture of a lifetime. The Naval Air Station, downtown San Diego, the Coronado Bridge and the distant mountains make for a panoramic picture you will never forget. The lighthouse is a short walk and allows stunning sunset views of the Pacific Ocean and off-shore islands. Cabrillo National Monument commemorates the landing of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo's expedition for Spain of California in 1542.

Fort Rosecrans
Also located on Point Loma, Fort Rosecrans is a former WWII military outpost which contains bunkers, weapons emplacements and the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery (Arlington of the West). A visit to Fort Rosecrans is a somber reminder of the price of freedom.

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