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San Diego, also widely known as “America’s Finest City”, may be a coastal destination, but it’s so much more than a beach spot. From unique eateries to a variety of landscapes, no two days are the same in the second-largest city in California. Here are a few hidden gems to explore and inside tips to keep in mind when you’re moving to San Diego.
Also known as “California’s birthplace,” San Diego’s rich history stretches back to the 1500s. When California became part of the U.S. in 1850, it had just been through the Mexican American War, ultimately removing San Diego from the Mexican Empire. Today, Spanish culture is displayed prominently throughout the city, with many landmarks and attractions featuring Spanish namesakes.
San Diego’s dining options are endless, with a wide array of new restaurants and non-traditional eateries, such as food trucks and open markets.
Are you a mountain lover? San Diego has you covered with its breathtaking Mt. Julian. If you’re more of a beach enthusiast, there are over 70 miles of beaches with a variety of terrains to keep you active and exploring. For the valley fan, don’t forget the Carmel or Santee Valleys, both perfect for hiking in your free time. There’s even some desert, too! And we would be remiss in not including LEGOLAND California and the world-famous San Diego Zoo for fun family day outings. Bicyclists, photographers, campers, hikers, and surfers can all find their Zen in this geologically diverse locale that boasts warm weather nearly year-round.
The San Diego Chargers may have left town for Los Angeles, but there are still plenty of sports teams to cheer for. The Padres play major league baseball games in Petco Park, a 41,000 seat-stadium that also hosts world-class concerts. College teams like the San Diego State Aztecs and the San Diego Toreros play here as well. Not a baseball fan? Snag seats for ice hockey, soccer, lacrosse, rugby, and arena football.
Whether you want an authentic sopa or something sizzling over an open-pit BBQ grill, San Diego is a foodie’s paradise. The city’s dining options are endless, with a wide array of new restaurants and non-traditional eateries, such as food trucks and open markets. You can grab tacos and tortas before heading out to try some of the city’s best falafel, then swing by a famous gelato stand for a sweet dessert. The dining culture is strong and diverse here; those with hearty appetites won’t be disappointed. Check out a few of the hottest new and most anticipated new restaurants in San Diego.
Speaking of diversity, this city shares 15 miles of border with Mexico and is authorized by the US. to be a Foreign Trade Zone. The zone has one of the busiest commercial ports and two formal border crossings, one of which—the San Ysidro Port of Entry—is the busiest international crossings in the world! In addition to giving people a way in and out of the country, tons of commercial cargo travel back and forth as well.
San Diego has a rich history in the fishing industry, and while it no longer hosts giant tuna-catching fleets, it’s still the home to two of the largest and most notable seafood packers in the country: Bumble Bee Foods and Chicken of the Sea. Their headquarters remind residents that San Diego is known for providing delicious and healthy seafood to the rest of the world.
If you’re excited about moving to San Diego, you’re not alone. The area saw a net increase of over 76,000 people from 2010 to 2017. And while some people are leaving the larger California cities to less-populated locations, this sunny beach favorite still has room to grow.