Located south of downtown San Diego and just north of the Mexico border lies the area known as San Diego's South Bay, the gateway to Baja California. This area is home to a number of exciting attractions and also offers great surfing, sport fishing, beach volleyball and horseback riding along the coast and well as some of the best Mexican food this side of the border.
Connecting the South Bay to Coronado, you'll find a portion of the Bayshore Bikeway, one of the most beautiful bike paths in California. This 10-mile portion features a flat, palm tree lined path with stunning views of the San Diego Bay and Silver Strand State Beach, a great spot for families to camp, swim, surf, kayak and fish. It also borders the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge, a 3,940-acre wetland sanctuary for endangered and migrating birds, often seen from the bike path.
On the south end is Imperial Beach and the Tijuana Estuary, the largest salt water marsh in Southern California and another great spot to see migratory birds and local wildlife. North of the Estuary, located on the Sweetwater Marsh National Wildlife Refuge, is the Living Coast Discovery Center, a family friendly aquarium and nature center with walking trails. The Living Coast is home to more than 350 animal and plant species native to the San Diego Bay habitat. Other attractions in the area include Aquatica SeaWorld's Waterpark, the Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Center (formerly the US Olympic Training Center), with free tours of the center available on Saturdays at 11:00 AM, the Sleep Train Amphitheater where big name bands perform under the stars as well as golf and a scenic harbor and waterfront park.
An easy drive from Downtown San Diego, and just off the 805 freeway at the last U.S. exit before the border, is the area's largest outlet center, Las Americas Premium Outlets, which features more than 125 stores including many top name brands. With daily savings up to 65% off, it's worth the visit and shopping here is accented by beautiful courtyards, fountains, statues, and elegant architecture.
South Bay is home to the CBX Cross Border Xpress, the bi-national connection between San Diego and Tijuana. The enclosed pedestrian bridge connects directly to Tijuana International Airport, allowing for easier, hassle-free international travel in and out of San Diego.
The neighborhood of Barrio Logan brings a unique culture and spirit to San Diego. The area is home to Chicano Park, the geographic and emotional heart of Barrio Logan. Now a National Landmark, Chicano Park is home to the largest concentration of Chicano Murals in the world with more than 80 paintings on seven acres.
The National City neighborhood of the South Bay has a strong military presence; its three-mile port area along the San Diego Bay is part of Naval Base San Diego, the largest U.S. Naval base on the west coast.
South Bay sits in a unique location bordering Mexico and just minutes from downtown San Diego. By car, you'll be here in no time as both major interstate freeways (I-5 and I-805) end at the US Border. For those who are energy-conscious, take the Blue Trolley line into the main artery of South Bay. Catch the trolley from Old Town Station and enjoy the scenery as you end at the San Ysidro Transit Center near the border with Mexico. From Coronado, drive the picturesque Silver Strand south through Imperial Beach to arrive at South Bay.
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