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Downtown & Gaslamp Quarter

The hottest nightlife scene on the West Coast

Discover San Diego's Urban Side

The heartbeat of every city lives in its downtown, and San Diego is no exception. Located only minutes from the airport, San Diego's thriving urban center offers an abundance of options for accommodations, activities, dining and cultural attractions, all easily accessible by foot, bike, car or public transportation. In the historic Gaslamp Quarter, where modern architecture and Victorian-Age buildings stand side-by-side, you'll discover eclectic galleries, chic boutiques, trendy nightclubs, rooftop bars, gastropubs, craft beer haunts and fine dining restaurants lining the streets.

During the day, families can enjoy compelling cultural attractions in San Diego's downtown, like The New Children's Museum, take in a baseball game at Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres, or catch the trolley to Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo. With plenty of places to eat, shop and explore, families can enjoy a true California urban safari.

After dark, the city transforms into a sophisticated playground for adults. With an endless variety of posh night clubs, sizzling music venues and sky-high rooftop bars, there's plenty of ways to enjoy a memorable night on the town.

The waterfront Embarcadero (or "landing place" in Spanish) lines the western edge of downtown. Its boardwalk hugs the San Diego Bay, home to the cruise terminal, the Navy Pier and Seaport Village. Climb aboard to explore the ships at the USS Midway Museum, the Star of India, or the Maritime Museum of San Diego. If a moving sea vessel is more your style, hop on a harbor cruise and explore the bay, while taking in the skyline views. For fun on land, head to the Headquarters at Seaport Village to grab a gourmet bite or browse for one-of-a-kind take-home treasures.

If you're looking for some authentic local flavor, immerse yourself in San Diego's Little Italy district, just north of downtown, where you can grab a slice of pizza or an espresso and biscotti from a local café, or dine at one of the celebrity chef restaurants located on bustling Kettner Boulevard known as "Top Chef Alley." Just south of downtown sits the vibrant East Village, a revitalized warehouse district with a hip social scene, and trendy cafes, craft beer bars and high energy vibe. East of downtown you'll find Barrio Logan, the epicenter of San Diego's Hispanic community, where art and food converge in a symphony of sights, sounds and tastes. The colorful murals and outstanding fare are worth the trip.

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Getting to Downtown & Gaslamp Quarter

Downtown is the heart of San Diego and there's not shortage of ways to get into the action. All major freeways go through the city including Interstate 5 and 805, and State Highway 163. Unlike many cities, traffic during rush hour flows away from the city in the morning, and into the city at night - so for tourists, the trip is quick! San Diego's public transportation system is efficient and cost-effective. The Red Trolley crosses the city in several key areas with major connections at downtown's Santa Fe Station. Amtrak and the Coaster rail service connects North County and its quintessential beach towns to downtown action. And once you are in the city, ride share programs including Car-To-Go, DecoBike, and FRED (Free Ride Everywhere Downtown) provide great alternatives to move around town.

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Barrio Logan

For years, the Barrio Logan neighborhood has been one of San Diego's best kept secrets. An epicenter of the city's Mexican-American culture, this neighborhood is quickly becoming a hotspot for cutting-edge art and authentic local culture.

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San Diego's Embarcadero

A great place for a stroll along the water

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San Diego's Historic Gaslamp Quarter

Not only is this area the epicenter of San Diego’s nightlife scene, it is also rich with cultural offerings

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Balboa Park December Nights

Dec 7 - Dec 8, 2018

Balboa Park December Nights brings families and friends together to spread holiday joy and kick-off the "most wonderful time of the year" with lights and more!

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San Diego International Auto Show

Dec 27 - Dec 30, 2018

Where the cars are the stars! The San Diego International Auto Show features the widest variety of new vehicles under one roof.

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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

Nov 12 - Nov 18, 2018

Now in its 15th year, the San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival® is the largest wine and culinary classic on the West Coast and is a signature event for the city of San Diego. The week long festival features wine tasting seminars, cooking classes by James Beard Award-winning chefs, intimate luncheons with hand-selected wine pairings, and unforgettable celebrity chef dinners. The Festival culminates on Saturday at the star-studded Grand Tasting Event held on the magnificent San Diego Bay.

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San Diego Bay Parade of Lights

Dec 9 - Dec 16, 2018

The San Diego Bay Parade of Lights is a time-honored holiday tradition with more than 80 boats lavishly decorated sailing by the shores for all to see.

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Barrio Logan

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San Diego's Embarcadero

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San Diego's Historic Gaslamp Quarter

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What's On

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Balboa Park December Nights

Dec 7 - Dec 8, 2018
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San Diego International Auto Show

Dec 27 - Dec 30, 2018
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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

Nov 12 - Nov 18, 2018
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San Diego Bay Parade of Lights

Dec 9 - Dec 16, 2018
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Downtown on Instagram

 

Deals just for you

Accommodation

Snooze N Cruise *Boarding Pass Required

Porto Vista Hotel
Valid: Apr 18 - ongoing

Your voyage doesn't have to start and end at the dock. Extend your travel with us at the Porto Vista! Cruise on by and discover America's finest city from our view. Take a 10% Discount on rooms, $15...

Venues

Special Cruise Passenger Offer

BIGA
Valid: Aug 10, 2018 - ongoing

Come join us at BIGA San Diego, located in downtown's Historic Gaslamp District, for a scoop of our delicious, artisanal gelato.  We also offer exquisite espresso drinks and pastries starting at...

Restaurants

$5 off Full Moon or Blue Moon Dinner Cruises

Hornblower Cruises & Events
Valid: Jul 17, 2018 - ongoing

Evenings on the water take on a whole new luster under the light of a full or blue moon. Save $5 off any Full Moon or Blue Moon Dinner Cruise.

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