Foodie, craft beer nerd, shopaholic, music geek, photographer and contemporary art fan could all be used to describe me. I’m a big proponent of highlighting San Diego’s hidden gems and local businesses and breaking stereotypes about our city. We’re more than just sunshine and beaches (though those are nice, too!).
What would you do on your ideal San Diego Day?
Eating and shopping around my favorite neighborhoods: Golden Hill, South Park, North Park, Little Italy and Hillcrest. Then popping into one of our great art museums and capping off the night with some live music and a a local beer at The Casbah.
What is your favorite San Diego outdoor activity?
Does shopping count as an outdoor activity? Or checking out the public art around town, like at Chicano Park? I do love visiting the La Jolla tide pools in the summer and ice skating at the outdoor rinks that go up each winter.
Do you prefer burgers and beer or linguine and red wine?
Let's get one thing straight here: San Diego craft beer goes with everything, not just burgers. Though it is really good with a burger.
Latest music purchases for my iPod player are…
I’m lucky to be married to a music journalist, so advance copies of the newest albums are constantly available to me for free. But I can’t seem to stop playing the new album by CHVRCHES, and San Diego band Rocket from the Crypt have been on repeat a lot lately.
Follow Candice on Twitter @candicesd
Downtown may be the best known area of San Diego, but there are plenty of places to explore beyond downtown’s borders! In this edition of Destination San Diego, we’ll explore some of the neighborhoods in Southeastern San Diego. We’ll also take a look at the story of the spectacular span between San Diego and Coronado, then venture to a historic street in Chula Vista. And, we’ll show you a spot just northeast of downtown San Diego that’s been called “the best backyard in San Diego.” Plus, local surf and action photographer, Aaron Chang, dishes on San Diego’s art scene, inspiring views and the can’t-miss galleries.
In this episode of Destination San Diego, we’ll introduce you to City Heights – an urban neighborhood that is a true melting pot of different ethnic groups. Home to authentic ethnic restaurants and markets, hidden artworks and live music venues, City Heights is an undiscovered destination in San Diego. We’ll also check in at the beautifully restored Cosmopolitan Hotel in Old Town, and explore another historic building restoration that “electrified” the downtown skyline. World-renowned conductor of the San Diego Symphony, Jahja Ling, shares his most inspirational sites and favorite art and cultural experiences around town. And, we have your tickets to watch the many evolutions of Balboa Park’s Old Globe Theatre.
San Diego is known for a lot of things, from Top Gun to Shamu! On this edition of Destination San Diego, you’ll get a peek behind the scenes at some of the region’s most well known icons, like the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar and the annual Comic-Con International convention. SeaWorld’s Stranded Animal Coordinator, Jody Westberg, shares a behind-the-scenes tour of the Animal Care Center along with her favorite spots outside the park to catch a glimpse of San Diego’s wildlife. Plus, you’ll also discover a few lesser-known secrets, like the best places to get delicious, authentic Asian food in San Diego’s north side, the history of the University of San Diego, and San Diego’s apple country in the mountain town of Julian.
In this edition of Destination San Diego, we’ll learn more about the unmatched natural beauty, upscale vibe and world-class attractions that help La Jolla to live up to its nickname as “the jewel” of San Diego. We’ll also learn about the history of La Jolla Cove and explore the iconic “Pink Lady” of La Jolla – the La Valencia Hotel. Plus, pro-surfer Rob Machado shares his favorite places to grab a wave, catch a show and find an awesome burrito. And to wrap it all up, we’ll take you out to sea to experience an incredible afternoon of whale watching.
On this edition of Destination San Diego, we’ll show you one of San Diego’s best kept secrets – the vibrant Barrio Logan neighborhood. An epicenter of the city’s Mexican-American culture, this neighborhood is quickly becoming a hotspot for cutting-edge art and authentic local culture. The neighborhood is also home to Chicano Park, the largest collection of Chicano murals in the world. We’ll also tour the history of the iconic El Cortez and takes a look back at when Old Town was still considered new. Plus, celebrity chef Marcela Valladolid dishes on San Diego’s flavorful foodie scene and where to find the most delicious Mexican dishes.
Tune in to this edition of Destination San Diego to learn more about two of Balboa Park’s neighbors – North Park and South Park. These revitalized urban neighborhoods are fueled by art galleries, diverse restaurants and nightlife, and North Park proudly holds claim to being “the best beer neighborhood in the nation.” In North Park’s north end, we’ll travel down El Cajon Boulevard for a quick history lesson. Over in Balboa Park, we’ll take a look at the many faces of the Ford Building and show you a miniature wonderland inside the San Diego Model Railroad Museum. Plus, the San Diego Zoo’s animal trainer, Rick Schwartz, takes you behind-the-scenes at some of San Diego’s best spots for kids of all ages.
In this episode of Destination San Diego, we’ll explore the diverse terrain and miles of open spaces in San Diego’s Northeast region – an exceptional place to hike or bike, play a round of golf or spend an afternoon at a local winery. We’ll dig into the unexpected history of Ramona and explore the storied past of the Old Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside. Plus, PGA-certified teaching professional and mom, Tina Mickelson, talks about her family’s favorite places to play and what makes golf different in San Diego. Finally, we’ll reveal a hidden, magical garden in Escondido.
In this episode of Destination San Diego, you’ll take a tour of NTC at Liberty Station, San Diego’s newest arts and culture district. We’ll take a look back at the history of the Point Loma Lighthouse at the Cabrillo National Monument and Pacific Beach’s Crystal Pier. And, you’ll see a wonderful side of Ocean Beach’s history that might surprise you. Plus, Stone Brewing Company Co-Founder and CEO Greg Koch will give you the inside scoop on San Diego’s ever-expanding craft beer scene and the best way to taste all that San Diego has to offer.
With more than 70 miles of coastline in San Diego, finding a restaurant with a spectacular waterfront view is hardly a challenge. This is especially true around San Diego Bay, where breathtaking views can be found at local eateries serving everything from casual fish sandwiches to farm-to-table French fare. But for the ultimate in waterfront dining, arriving by car simply won’t do. That’s why 14 restaurants around San Diego Bay offer “Dock and Dine.” No need for a car, just dock your boat directly behind one of these restaurants for a uniquely San Diego dining experience:
Island Prime/C Level Lounge
Primo bay views and food at Island Prime restaurant and C Level Lounge
Known equally for steaks and seafood, Island Prime and the adjoining C Level Lounge along the water’s edge of Harbor Island offer panoramic views of the downtown skyline. Island Prime provides an elegant and upscale dining experience, while C Level Lounge has a casual, laid-back atmosphere.
Dock and dine at Anthony’s Fish Grotto and enjoy views of the bay and the catch of the day
Dock at Anthony’s Fish Grotto along downtown’s Embarcadero and choose between two restaurant experiences. Anthony’s Fish Grotto serves quality seafood in a home-style environment, while Anthony’s Fishette offers fast, casual meals for visitors on the go. Dockside services also include assistance in cleaning and prepping visitors’ “catch-of-the day.”
Dock at Coronado Ferry Landing and enjoy a plethora of dining options
Can’t get everyone onboard to pick a place to eat? Sail on over to Coronado Ferry Landing for everything from burgers to barbecue to gyros. Savor dishes inspired by the sea along with a spectacular view of Downtown San Diego at Peohe’s.
Enjoy views of Point Loma and the harbor on the Vessel terrace
After you dock, make sure to request a patio seat and enjoy views of the marina while you dine on the catch of the day. Even inside you will be treated to amazing harbor views from either a table or the 360º center bar.
Dock and Dine at Bali Hai for tiki inspired dishes and drinks
When opened in 1953, the landmark Bali Hai Restaurant on Shelter Island was a paragon of mid-century American tiki culture where the exotic atmosphere drew a swinging crowd. The tiki flare remains, as do the amazing harbor views and a mai tai that will really knock the wind out of your sails.
With more than a dozen pet friendly hotels throughout the city, and even more restaurants that open their doors to doggy dining companions, it’s no surprise that San Diego is a popular destination for pet lovers. And for those looking for a pet-centric experience that goes above and beyond, you’ll find that here too!
If quality dog or cat bonding time is on your travel itinerary, check out these unusual experiences for pet lovers in San Diego:
Order From the Doggy Menu
Yes, La Jolla Brewing Company has a menu just for dogs! (photos via @lajollabrewing)
Many San Diego restaurants set out water bowls and treats for dogs dining with their owners, but the La Jolla Brewing Company steps up the canine dining game with an entire Dog Menu. While you enjoy one of their signature craft brews, your pooch can feast on frozen “chicken pops” or an oatmeal bowl topped off with peanut butter.
Active pet lovers can take to the bay with their dogs thanks to SUP Pups, a stand up paddle board tour for dogs and their owners hosted by The SUP Connection. The tour includes some doggy playtime followed by a paddle through the calm channels of the San Diego Bay.
Is your dog already a pro when it comes to water sports? Enter him or her in the annual Unleashed by Petco Surf Dog Competition! At the most adorable surf event of the year, fearless dogs jump on their boards, paddle out and hang 20. Even if your dog isn’t up for the challenge, it’s plenty of fun to watch.
Cats and Coffee
Cats and coffee are the purrrfect combo (photos via @thecatcafesandiego)
Of course, it’s not just dogs that have all the fun in San Diego. If cat cuddles are what you seek, head to San Diego’s Cat Café. The spot in the heart of downtown offers visitors a chance to enjoy delicious cup of coffee while hanging out with several resident kitties. Best of all, the resident cats are available for adoption, so if your fall in love over your cup of coffee, you can take your new best friend home with you!