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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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Wonderfront Music & Arts Festival

Nov 22 - Nov 24, 2019

A highly-anticipated 7+ stage, 95+ bands, 3-day music, culinary and arts festival will descend upon the stunning waterfront of downtown San Diego from Broadway Pier to the Embarcadero Parks. The festival offers diverse attractions including yacht parties, water sports, art installations, after-parties, a craft beer village and plenty of local flavors. Wonderfront festival’s re-entry policy encourages festival-goers to customize their weekend experience and truly integrates the city into the fabric of the festival. In its inaugural year, Wonderfront will synthesize the city and the sea in a way that no music festival has ever done before.

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Balboa Park December Nights

Dec 6 - Dec 7, 2019

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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Fleet Week San Diego 2019

Nov 4 - Nov 12, 2019

Fleet Week San Diego honors and celebrates the men and women of the military through events that entertain and alliances that thank and support these heroes.

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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

Nov 10 - Nov 17, 2019

Welcome to the San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival, where sailboats and sandy beaches serve as the backdrop to one of the country’s most talked about weeks in food. Featuring dozens of events, hundreds of domestic and international wineries, the celebration of craft beer and spirits, local culinary legends and nationally recognized celebrities, and a Grand Tasting Finale on the stunning Embarcadero.

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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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Wonderfront Music & Arts Festival

Nov 22 - Nov 24, 2019
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Balboa Park December Nights

Dec 6 - Dec 7, 2019
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Fleet Week San Diego 2019

Nov 4 - Nov 12, 2019
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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

Nov 10 - Nov 17, 2019
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Downtown on Instagram

 

Deals just for you

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La Valencia Hotel
Valid: Jan 9 - ongoing

Save 30% on suites with a three-night minimum stay based on availability and get more room for less.

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Love at the Cove

La Valencia Hotel
Valid: Jan 9 - ongoing

Indulge in dark chocolate truffles with pink champagne on arrival, plus a $100 dining credit at THE MED Ocean View Restaurant.

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Make it a 3-day weekend and save with Hilton

Hilton Hotels & Resorts
Valid: Jan 31 - ongoing

Are you ready for a long weekend in San Diego? Book your 3-day weekend and and save up to 50% on Sunday. Bike along the La Jolla coastline. Soak up the sun on the beach. Wander through the zoo,...

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