San Diego, known as America’s finest city, is a year-round waterfront destination. With many days of sunshine, this southern California haven attracts visitors from across the globe yearning for ocean air, sandy feet and access to vitamin D 365 days a year. Situated in the southwest corner of the United States, San Diego is filled with people living active lifestyles, spending time outside and enjoying the salty sea air. Whether it’s the Pacific Ocean or the bay front, locals and visitors flock to the water. Although the coastline sees its fair share of action, downtown San Diego’s Seaport Village is a hub for locals and travelers alike. Throughout the year, thousands stroll along the San Diego Bay taking in the sights. Be it a beautiful exercise route, trendy retail shop, caricature drawing, or tourist souvenir you’re looking for – Seaport Village has it all!
Situated on the shoreline of San Diego Bay, Seaport Village is a destination in itself for any traveler to California. Nestled between the home of Comic Con, San Diego’s Convention Center, and the maritime mystique of the USS Midway, Seaport Village sees hundreds of visitors daily. At any point of the day, you can catch runners and walkers training on the boardwalk between the village and the bay. Dusk draws guests for nightly views of nature’s sunset spectacular with views of Coronado Island and even later into the evening as the lights of the USS Midway gleam above the deck in the traditional red, white and blue.
Filled with fun activities for all ages, food for all palates and stores for all shoppers, Seaport Village offers an indoor/outdoor playground all year round. There are over 50 unique shops and more than 10 casual and fine dining eateries to choose from. Tourist trinkets and apparel can be found at shops like Best of San Diego. Gifts for those at home can come from the Magic Shop, Kite Flite, The Mugger, For Bare Feet or pick up specialty artwork and jewelry creations from Indian Trails Gallery. If you’re in the market for a unique hot or cold cup to hold your liquid needs, check out Tervis. Themed with everything from sports to beach to animals and more, this store is wall-to-wall cups and lids for even the pickiest of guests. And for those who like a bit of bite with their meal, check out Hot Lick’s hot sauce shop. From a hint of spice to the blow your face off heat of ghost pepper creations, this shop houses hot sauce flavors from across the globe to meet the needs of those with saucier palates.
Seaport Village has its share of dining options from fine waterfront dining at Harbor House to fish tacos overlooking the bay at Marion’s. Grab your morning breakfast at Buster’s Beach House & Longboard Bar and watch as the boats in the marina wake up from their daily slumber. Check out Wetzel’s Pretzels for a sweet or salty snack of pretzels or cookies. If it’s a sweet-filled afternoon you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place. There are cookies to be found at Seaport Cookie Company, fudge of all flavors at Seaport Coffee & Fudge and don’t forget the option of a Vermont sponsored brain freeze at Ben and Jerry’s. The newest addition to the delicious lineup is Frost Me Gourmet Cupcakes. Season nine champions of The Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, at Frost Me you can find gourmet cupcake creations to meet every sweet tooth’s desire.
The Embarcadero and boardwalk in front of Seaport Village are constantly filled with street performers of all kinds. There’s a Marine veteran with colorful birds of all sizes waiting to show off his talented parrots. The boardwalk is the place to come if you want your fortune read, caricature drawn, are interested in magic or want to try your hand at stone stacking. On the corner, in front of Wetzel’s Pretzels, you’ll find a rock artist. He regularly designs art creations by stacking one natural stone atop another just beside the bay. Watch as he channels eastern arts in order to create his masterpieces and if you think you want to give it a shot, all you have to do is ask.
On Saturdays, you’ll find the excitement of the Fish Market just west of Seaport Village. Fishing boats are docked from the wee hours of the morning as vendors fill the pier with the daily catch. Get there early for the best pick of the lot. Noted by a chalkboard showcasing daily specials and types of fish available, vendors line their tables with fresh fish like tuna and salmon, shellfish of all kinds and even the specialty delicacy of sea urchin. By mid-afternoon the pier is emptied of all remnants of this seafood market until the next Saturday morning when it all begins again.
Adjacent to Seaport Village you’ll find The Headquarters. The restored old police headquarters has been turned into a tourist destination offering a new experience for all visitors. Here you’ll find restaurants like Puesto, Eddie V’s, The Cheesecake Factory and Seasons 52 turning out delicious dishes daily. Geppetto’s boutique toy shop attracts all ages with nostalgic toys and games, today’s newest items and even the trending anxiety crushing coloring books for adults. A cheese shop and chocolate shop mingle with the likes of Starbucks, Seaside Paper & Home and Aaron Chang Ocean Art Gallery in the outdoor plaza shopping structure. Summer nights include movies in the plaza and other evening activities while the holiday season finds a giant ornamented Christmas tree highlighting ways to help others during the season.
San Diego weather yields an outdoor playground annually. Come in February, June, September or December and you’ll find life happening on the waterfront. If you’re around in September, join the locals to get your “pirate on” at Landlubber’s Day or head on down at the end of November when our Surfin’ Santa makes a visit to kick off the holiday season. Take in a magic show, fly a kite, purchase your next favorite article of clothing, share a meal with friends or just kick back with a fish taco and an ice cream and keep a look out for seals as you enjoy the sunshine at Seaport Village.