Please help me plan my day in San Diego to help impress a girl. :)
September 14, 2011 9:45 AM   Subscribe

Spending a day with a girl in San Diego. Whats cool to do and where is it located? Help me plan my day please to help impress this girl. :)

I've been dating this girl for over a month now and we're leaving to San Diego Friday around 4pm (5 hour drive from Phoenix), so we have Friday night there, all of Saturday and then leaving Sunday around 1pm.

What are some things we could do Friday night, Saturday, and possibly Sunday morning.

We already have some beach time planned. Possibly rent some surf boards. Does anyone know where that is by the way?

She keeps asking what we are going to do besides hanging out on the beach, and in my head I'm at a lost as I have only been to San Diego once about a year ago. :/
posted by stlboi to Travel & Transportation around San Diego, CA (14 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
stlboi: "She keeps asking what we are going to do besides hanging out on the beach"

Your first move is to reply to this with "What would you like to do, honeymaplesugarsweets?"*

If you've already asked her what she wants to do, and she has no answers for you, then go with the answers here.

* - don't actually say that last part
posted by Grither at 9:57 AM on September 14, 2011

Here are a couple of recent questions about what to do in San Diego: here and here, outdoorsy stuff, vacation sorts of places. (The "sandiego" tag is more informative than the two words separated.)
posted by illenion at 10:02 AM on September 14, 2011

The farmer's market in Little Italy on Saturday morning is a nice little wander - go early and stock up for an afternoon picnic.
posted by judith at 10:10 AM on September 14, 2011

There are a lot of beaches here, and only some of them are going to have any kind of rentals. I have seen surf school at Mission Beach but I think you might want to do some googling because that's probably not the greatest surfing. I saw scuba and I think ocean swimming classes at the Scripps Underwater Park in La Jolla last weekend. The park is also used by seals, which is neat (and the Children's Pool on the other end of the park also has seals. There's a lot of politics around the seals right now, but the seals themselves are members of the Eat and Sleep On The Beach party).

Note: it looks like it's going to be a little chilly on the beaches this weekend (I have only lived here since March, so far the beaches have always been a little chilly except for like one day when it was really hot everywhere else and comfortable in shorts at the beach).

I haven't made it to the USS Midway yet, but saw some friends a couple of weekends ago who had just been and really enjoyed it.

See the other threads for other things to do. If she likes wine, you might want to hit Julian or Temecula, but they're a little bit of a drive and you guys may have maxed out your car time already.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:47 AM on September 14, 2011

You are going to see some folks occasionally pushing metal steamer-carts around. Inside these carts are Tamales.


"They are 1.50 apiece. I have chicken, beef, cheese, or pork carnitas."


He accepts your six dollars and hands you four tamales.


She smiles gratefully, and enjoys some of the best goddamn street tamales she's ever had.

(You must do this for me - I still pine for the tamales I had when visiting a lady in San Diego. Miss them a damn sight more than I miss the lady.)
posted by FatherDagon at 11:00 AM on September 14, 2011 [3 favorites]

Go to the Zoo! The San Diego Zoo is world-renowned, and for good reason.
posted by jquinby at 11:04 AM on September 14, 2011

What do you two like to do? Where are you staying? San Diego is really big. Without knowing that, it's pretty hard to recommend anything.

That said, I'm going to pretend both of you are like me and tell you what I'd do (actually, this is pretty close to what I'm doing this weekend anyway):

Friday night - check out some local brews. You can either go to a brewery (Stone, Green Flash, AleSmith, Karl Strauss), a craft beer bar (Hamilton's, Blind Lady Alehouse, Small Bar), or one of the awesome breweries up in North County that make great pizza and beer (Pizza Port, Breakwater).

Saturday - spend the day at the beach. La Jolla Shores, Ocean Beach, Moonlight State Beach all have places to rent surfboards. Moonlight State Beach is easily the prettiest and least crowded, but La Jolla Shores has the Birch Aquarium and kayak rentals. There are a lot of fun little kitschy shops to wander around in Ocean Beach and you can eat the crazy seafood tacos at South Beach Bar and Grill...and then get waffle-ice cream sandwiches for dessert next door! Something you need to keep in mind is that it's not easy to find parking at Ocean Beach and La Jolla Shores, so either go early or expect to have to be patient.

Sunday - recover from the beach--get a fantastic brunch at Cafe 21 on Adams Ave and follow it up by wandering Balboa Park before you head home. You can toss a frisbee around, check out the dog park, visit the various museums or go to the zoo.
posted by millions of peaches at 11:11 AM on September 14, 2011 [2 favorites]

The good news is some of the North County beaches have reopened after the contamination from the blackout last week. The bad news is Torrey Pines is still closed. I'd bet it will reopen by the weekend. You can get up to the minute info here.

As illenion mentions, the older posts recommendations are still mostly valid.

The Zoo can be a nice place to go in the afternoon. Wild Animal Park or whatever they call it now near Escondido can also be a nice day.

At night, there's lots of clubs in the Gaslamp part of downtown. Warning: If you have a low tolerance for Scottsdale douchebags, they migrate here during the AZ summers to join our local douchebags. It isn't all bad, there are some fun places, too. Check out the SD Reader for what bands are playing.

The marine layer is back and looks like it will be around until the weekend. So it will be cloudy/foggy in until about 10-11am or so. And by Phoenix standards it will be freezing: Only getting to about 68ยบ, a little cooler at night.
posted by birdherder at 11:32 AM on September 14, 2011

You can toss a frisbee around, check out the dog park, visit the various museums or go to the zoo.

Note that Nate's Point dog park area (on the west side of the park near 6th Ave and Laurel St) is partially shut down for turf restoration. Unfortunately, this means that the poo bombs left behind by careless dog owners are concentrated into a fairly small space and are much more difficult to avoid than normal. I don't know if that's true for the Grape St dog area on the other side of the park. If you want to go to that one, I would then recommend the Big Kitchen for breakfast, also on Grape Street, just a couple blocks east between Fern and 30th.

Also note that the ocean water has been fairly chilly lately. We don't normally get much above 70 degrees, even in the middle of summer, but the temps have been more like 60 lately.
posted by LionIndex at 11:33 AM on September 14, 2011

At night, there's lots of clubs in the Gaslamp part of downtown. Warning: If you have a low tolerance for Scottsdale douchebags, they migrate here during the AZ summers to join our local douchebags. could skip the Gaslamp altogether*. Parking is expensive and time consuming, bros and women tottering precariously on stilettos crowd the streets, and nearly everything is disturbingly smooth and shiny. There's not much local color--you could be anywhere. That said, if clubs and lounges are your scene--try Altitude Sky Lounge. The view really is all it's cracked up to be, and the crowd is pretty nice.

*Hillcrest/University Heights/North Park/South Park are not far from downtown and have plenty (and IMO more pleasant) options for local nightlife.
posted by millions of peaches at 12:03 PM on September 14, 2011

Check out paragliders and hang-gliders at the Glider Port at Black's Beach (bonus: if you hike down, it's a nude beach)
Balboa Park is awesome.
Hang out with sea lions at Torrey Pines Cove.
Ride the rollercoaster at Mission Beach.
Make sure to get some Mexican food and a fish taco.
posted by hypersloth at 1:08 PM on September 14, 2011

Update: All the beaches in the county are now open.
posted by birdherder at 6:23 PM on September 14, 2011

I used to live in the North Park/University Heights neighborhood of San Diego and it's a fun place to walk around. Lots of independent stores, thrift shops, a magazine store owned by a taciturn man who sells dusty stacks of Life, Playboy, Hustler, etc. (That's in Hillcrest.)

But the North Park/Hillcrest scene is all down University Ave. and it's very young, hipster, gay-friendly. Good bars, tiny restaurants, galleries, independent movie theatres. And if you like movies, you should take your girl to the outdoor theatre (not a drive-in): Cinema Under the Stars. They show a mix of old and new stuff. Nearby is Brooklyn Pizza which has the best pizza ever. Mission Cafe on University is GREAT for breakfast.

These neighborhoods are a little north of downtown San Diego, up the 163 N fwy. Anyway, if you want to get away from the beach for a little bit, remember:
Hillcrest/North Park: University Ave.
University Heights/Normal Heights: Adams Ave.
VERY VERY hipster bar where you can go hipster-watching: Livewire on El Cajon Blvd. Up a little bit from there is a really good chocolate/dessert cafe called Eclipse.
posted by book 'em dano at 11:46 PM on September 14, 2011

Also, if you like contemporary art and are under 25, you can get into the Museum of Contemporary Art for free! There is one in La Jolla and one in downtown SD on Kettner Blvd. The gift shops are really cool too.
posted by book 'em dano at 12:15 AM on September 15, 2011

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