There are fun things to do in San Diego for all ages. The San Diego Zoo is a considered one of the top five zoos in the world, spanning a hundred-acre tropical garden that houses around 4,000 animals, including rare giant pandas from China. Animal lovers can also visit San Diego Zoo Safari Park to watch animals roam free, while the SEA LIFE Aquarium at LEGOLAND educates children on underwater wildlife alongside the 60 rides and attractions of the LEGOLAND theme park. San Diego is also home to the world’s most visited ship museum, the USS Midway Museum, which features twenty-nine restored aircraft and flight simulators, while the U.S’ largest urban cultural park can be found at Balboa Park, where a storied history sits amid beautiful gardens, museums and cultural events. For a little more history, see Cabrillo National Monument, which commemorates the discovery of California in 1542, while Old Town San Diego dates back to the early 1800s with the first Spanish settlement on the west coast.
There are ample opportunities for shopping in San Diego at the numerous shopping spots, including the fabulous Fashion Valley Shopping Center in Mission Valley. Here, there are fantastic high-end stores to browse and find some of California’s hottest clothing stores plus technology, health and beauty, make-up, fragrances and much more. There is also a great selection of restaurants to enjoy along with an eighteen-screen movie theatre and beautifully landscaped outdoor areas.
There is a hub of diversity to be discovered across San Diego, with influences from Spain, Mexico and beyond mingling with California’s sense of cool. The Gaslamp Quarter sits in the heart of the downtown area, where buildings from the 1800s combine with a contemporary urban setting, housing much of the city’s nightlife, bars, restaurants and festivals. You can also discover Italian heritage at Little Italy, where over six-thousand Italian families once lived, and seek out talk-about breweries and dining spots, or head to Hillcrest and North Park to find vintage clothing shops. For pretty gardens, parks and a quaint village feel, head across the bay to Coronado Island or go to La Jolla for a Mediterranean-style vibe.
Beaches and Outdoor Fun
San Diego boasts a beautiful seventy-mile stretch of coastline, ranging form the legendary sandy shores of Coronado Beach to the dramatic three-hundred-foot sandstone cliffs of Torrey Pines State Park. Along this wonderful selection of beaches, there is plenty to do, including surfing, swimming, kayaking, snorkelling, diving, paddle boarding and sailing. La Jolla Ecological Reserve is one of the most beautiful spots, covering six-thousand acres of the ocean floor with marine wonders. On land, there are hills, canyons, lakes, mountains and Anza-Borrega Desert to offer plenty of opportunity for adventures such as mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing and more. San Diego also boasts ninety-three golf courses including the world-famous Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, which features stunning ocean views from the immaculate fairways.
Food & Drink
San Diego has become known as the ‘Craft Beer Capital’ of the United States, boasting an ever-expanding number of breweries and tasting rooms, now tallying up over one-hundred-and-fifty around the San Diego area. Perfect for both brew-aficionados and those who like a casual sip in the sun, the array of places to sample the innovative and exciting beers seems to be never-ending, though there are a good number of tried-and-tested favourites for you to start at. At these spots, you can also fill up on some of California’s famed farm-to-fork cuisine, or head out to taste some of the flavoursome street food, from surfside tacos to Bajan specialities and tantalising pizzas. San Diego is also home to six-thousand small farms and markets, too, where visitors can sample some of the delicious fresh produce plus enjoy local entertainment.
British Airways direct from London Heathrow to San Diego.
From London Heathrow to San Diego: 11 hours, 10 minutes.
Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.
Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.
For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk
Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya), Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit Insect and tick bite avoidance.
In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.
Visit the FCDO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: Foreign Travel Advice. Additional sources of information include: Public Health England, The National Travel Health And Network Centre, Foreign And Commonwealth Office and your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.