3000 Mission Blvd
San Diego, CA 92109
Region: Mission Bay and Beaches
Mission Beach is San Diego’s lively take on the classic boardwalk beach town with numerous rental shops and Belmont Park, a classic boardwalk amusement park, featuring the Giant Dipper Roller Coaster, originally built in 1925 but since restored, the Wave House, miniature golf, bumper cars, rock climbing and an arcade.
A popular beach with the 20-something crowd, there are also plenty of bars, in Mission Beach and adjacent Pacific Beach, and a hot nightlife scene for young adults and the young at heart.
There are also a host of activities for the whole family to enjoy including biking, beach volleyball, boogie boarding, surfing, whale watching, sport fishing and scuba diving.
A short walk across Mission Beach’s main thoroughfare leads you to the calm waters of Mission Bay, home to SeaWorld San Diego and the largest aquatic park of its kind, surrounded by grassy parks, playgrounds, picnic tables and miles of paved sidewalks. Rent a sailboat, take a leisurely bayside bike ride, or watch the kids play in this one-of-a-kind oasis.
Where to Go
- Most of the action in Mission Beach centers around Belmont Park at the intersection of Mission Boulevard and West Mission Bay Drive, where you can ride the roller coaster and other amusement rides, rent a bike, play some games or grab a bite.
- South Mission Beach offers a slower pace from the bustling activity in the Belmont Park area. The beach gets even wider as you go south, with lots of room to relax on the sand or try some beach volleyball.
- There are great spots for fishing at the end of the road at South Mission Beach Park, where you can cast off the jetty and watch the boats pass in and out through the Harbor Channel. You'd never know it to look, but a half-mile off the coast are a series of shipwrecks, placed here to create an artificial reef and a diver's haven for underwater exploration.
- Don't count on finding parking on any of Mission Beach's narrow and densely inhabited residential streets and, if you do, check the signs before you count yourself lucky. Slightly better odds can be had at the public lots around Belmont Park, Santa Clara Point and South Mission Beach Park. Otherwise, this is a good place to visit by bus or bike.
Bathrooms and Showers
- There are plenty of lifeguard and bathroom outposts that line the beaches of Mission Beach.
- Visiting Belmont Park - roller coaster, bumper cars, arcade
- Riding the artificial wave at the Wave House
- Surfing, boogie boarding, kite boarding
- Swimming, but in designated areas in the summer. Watch for signs.
- Fishing off of the Mission Bay jetty
- Walking, jogging and bicycling on the boardwalk
- From the 5 FWY take Garnet Avenue west to Mission Blvd. south. Alternatively, take Sea World Drive to West Mission Bay Drive to the roller coaster. The city bus runs right through Mission Beach, call San Diego transit at 619-233-3004 for routes and schedules.
What to Love
- People watching on Mission Beach boardwalk.
- Watching beach volleyball at South Mission Beach.
- Riding the 73-foot-tall Giant Dipper wooden rollercoaster.
- Belmont Park offers unlimited ride wristbands (adult and child prices) for a full day of fun on the Giant Dipper, bumper cars, carousel and other rides.
What to Know
- Mission Beach boardwalk features a diverse crowd, generally 20-somethings, where you'll see an array of tattoos, piercings and swimsuit attire.
- There are plenty of dining options along the boardwalk and within walking distance of the beach community.