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Welcome to

Hillcrest

The center of San Diego's LGBTQ+ community

Everyone is welcome

Located only a few miles north of San Diego's bustling downtown, the vibrant uptown neighborhood of Hillcrest stands as San Diego's LGBTQ+ central hub, offering a array of bars, restaurants, coffee houses, boutiques and unique shops. 

Lauded for its welcoming vibe and pedestrian-friendly streets and sidewalk patios, the area's east end is marked by a towering rainbow Pride flag just off Hillcrest's main thoroughfare of University Avenue, at the corner of Normal Street. The landmark serves as the starting point for San Diego LGBTQ+ Pride's annual mile-long parade held each July. A block away, down Harvey Milk Street, is where the San Diego LGBTQ+ Community Center resides.

Spanning a dozen blocks west from the Pride flag along University Avenue is a colorful mix of ethnically diverse restaurants, nightclubs and acclaimed wine bars. You’ll also discover home decor shops, distinctive boutiques, the Uptown District shopping plaza and the country's only openly gay brewery, Hillcrest Brewing Company. This lively stretch also hosts one of the largest farmers markets in San Diego from 9AM – 2PM on Sunday.  A great place to shop for local produce, arts and crafts, the market also offers a wide range of gourmet stalls with hot and cold cuisine. 

University Avenue leads into the neighborhood's "village" area designated by the historic, neon "Hillcrest" sign. On intersecting Fifth Avenue, you’ll find a concentration of new and established restaurants, as well as a few dessert-centric eateries. Thrown into the mix are vintage clothing shops, book outlets and the multiplex Landmark Cinemas for taking in independent and foreign films.

Just south of Hillcrest sits Balboa Park, the largest urban cultural park in North America and a hub for recreation, arts and culture, and community gatherings. The park is home to 16 museums and performing arts venues, ornate Spanish-Renaissance architecture, 1,200 acres of beautiful gardens and the world-famous San Diego Zoo

View the LGBTQ+ Travel Guide for more on planning a trip to San Diego. 

 

Find a place to stay

Book online or call 1-800-350-6205 to speak with a local expert

Getting to Hillcrest

Just a stones throw from Balboa Park and downtown San Diego, Hillcrest is accessible from three primary directions. From downtown, head up Fifth Avenue, along Balboa Park's western edge and through Bankers Hill. Once you've reached Robinson Avenue, you'll be in the heart of Hillcrest. As the neighborhood is popular with the San Diego LGBTQ+ community, look for businesses flying a rainbow flag and you'll know you've arrived! From the east, exit University Avenue from Interstate 805 and head west. A few short blocks places you squarely in the center of the main shopping and dining area. For those traveling from the airport or Interstate 5, exit on Washington Street, and head east "up the hill" and exit on University Avenue. You'll pass through Mission Hills (worth the stop too!) before entering Hillcrest. 

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San Diego LGBTQ+ Pride Parade & Festival

With world-famous Balboa Park as its festival site and a mile-long parade route stretching through one of the most gay-friendly neighborhoods in the nation, San Diego LGBTQ+ Pride attracts nearly 200,000 locals and visitors to its annual three-day celebration in July.

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Nightlife and Day Drinks

A happening spot for San Diego's LGBTQ+ community with bar, nightclubs, restaurants and Pride.

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San Diego Farmers Markets

Find open-air shopping all around the county!

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2018 Showcase Concerto Competition

Oct 26, 2018

October 26, 2018 – 7pm

University Christian Church

3900 Cleveland Ave, San Diego, CA 92103

San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory’s intermediate level students compete for the prestigious opportunity to perform the concerto of their choice with full orchestra at our Showcase Level Concerts. This annual competition presents the chance for SDYS students to strive for excellence and amaze audiences with their exceptional level of musicianship.

Adults: $10

Students & Children: Free

For more information, please visit sdys.org

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19th San Diego Asian Film Festival

Nov 8 - Nov 17, 2018

The San Diego Asian Film Festival (SDAFF) is San Diego’s premier film showcase of Asian American and international cinema. Founded in 2000, the festival has grown to become the largest exhibition of Asian cinema in the western United States, and has showcased everything from future classics like Bong Joon-ho’s Memories of Murder (US Premiere) to luminary independent work like Patrick Wang’s award-winning In the Family (North American Premiere). Each year, the festival brings West Coast, North American, and World premieres of films from around the world to San Diego and gives audiences unique opportunities to discover international cinema.

This year, the 19th edition of SDAFF will showcase over 150 films from 20 countries from November 8-17, 2018.

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Half Day Coastal Tour

Aug 14, 2018 - ongoing

Feel like you live here on our 3-3.5 hour beach day cruise with a local guide to keep you company. Don't forget to BYOB if you want to have a drink while your on the bus!

What you get:

- Cooler with Ice onboard to keep your drinks nice and cold!

- Bottled water and small snacks

- Music and TV for entertainment inbetween stops

- Local guide

Stops:

- 1 Beach

- Lunch (various options from tacos to hawaiian and more)

- 1 Beach bar

 

 

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Nightmare on Normal Street

Oct 27, 2018

Guaranteed to be a Fang-tastic evening filled with ghouls, goblins and spine chilling scares. You won't want to miss this year Nightmare on Normal St.

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What's Hot

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San Diego LGBTQ+ Pride Parade & Festival

Discover

Nightlife and Day Drinks

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San Diego Farmers Markets

Discover

What's On

View More Events

2018 Showcase Concerto Competition

Oct 26, 2018
Discover

19th San Diego Asian Film Festival

Nov 8 - Nov 17, 2018
Discover

Half Day Coastal Tour

Aug 14, 2018 - ongoing
Discover

Nightmare on Normal Street

Oct 27, 2018
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Hillcrest on Instagram

 

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