San Diego just may be the most beautiful city in the United States. From its idyllic beaches to amazing food spots to rockin’ night life, the city has it all! Though 48 hours may not seem like a lot of time to explore San Diego, we promise that if you follow this guide you’ll have an amazing 2 days in the city!
First stop when you’re heading into San Diego has to be a delicious breakfast. The Broken Yolk Café is a San Diego breakfast hotspot, and is on many lists for best breakfast in America. Their omelets are absolutely to die for, but it’s their biscuits which really set them apart! Flakey and soft and delicious, you will definitely not want to miss out!
After breakfast you will want to soak up the beautiful Southern California sun, and since you’re in San Diego you should make a beeline for La Jolla Shores, the beautiful beach just south of the University of California at San Diego. You’ll see lots of surfers, sunbathers, and sports enthusiasts enjoying the gorgeous beach nestled in the heart of La Jolla, and the soft sands of the shores are a welcome place to rest and digest that bountiful breakfast. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
A light early afternoon nap is the perfect way to take a break after all that sun (you did book a hotel room at a great price here on Skyscanner right?). After a quick refreshing shower, grab a coffee at Bird Rock Coffee Roasters, one of San Diego’s very best local coffee houses. As you sip, make the drive down to the Mission Valley/Fashion Valley region, where some of the best shopping in the city goes down! From Michael Kors and Nordstrom to Apple and Express, the malls have something for everyone.
Once you have dealt with that shopping fix, it’s time for dinner in the city! Head down to the Grand Hyatt for one of the best meals in the city at Sally’s Seafood on the Water. From their famed lobster pot pie to their surprisingly excellent sushi, Sally’s has a variety of food on the menu, all of which reflect San Diego’s seaside sensibilities.
A short walk from the Grand Hyatt is the beautiful Gaslamp District, San Diego’s downtown nightlife hotspot. Featuring bars and restaurants around every corner, from piano bars to dives to ritzy martini bars, the Gaslamp is San Diego’s answer to Beale Street, the French Quarter, and Las Vegas all rolled into one! Parq and Bang Bang are two of the hottest spots in San Diego at the moment, and you’ll be sure to enjoy the mix of good drinks, good music, and good people to wrap up your first 24 hours in the city.
To kick off your last day in San Diego head to La Jolla Cove for some morning yoga! This beautiful little area on the northwest end of the city has little curio shops and boutiques coupled with a beautiful rocky cove and large grass areas to relax and become one with the universe. Entering the lotus position while feeling the cool sea breeze…can’t ask for a better way to start your day!
From yoga grab a quick bite at one of the many cafes in the area and get moving! You have a lot to do in a little time! There are three great attractions that are all a fantastic way to spend a morning and early afternoon: Sea World, the San Diego Zoo, and the San Diego Safari Park (ranked a top 10 location in the United States in numerous publications). Choose your adventure, and enjoy your time seeing some of the world’s most beautiful animals up close and personal.
Once you have had your fun with the beautiful beasts, head over to Coronado Island for some afternoon fun in the sun! With one of the most spectacular beaches in the world, Coronado Island is a beautiful escape just off the shores of San Diego (and accessible via a very large bridge). Play in the water, collect some seashells by the seashore, and lounge the day away while waiting for an incredible sunset!
Once night falls grab a quick dinner at Punjabi Tandoor, a non-descript Indian restaurant in the Mira Mesa region of the city, as well as in the Sorrento Valley region. Though it may not look like much from the outside, Punjabi Tandoor may be the very best Indian restaurant in the entire United States! With affordable prices, large portions, and a friendly staff, Punjabi Tandoor is a must-stop for dinner!
Following dinner and a quick shower and change at your hotel, head down to Pacific Beach to see the second best location for fun nightlife in the city (though our LGBT friends may claim Hillcrest for this honor). Grab some drinks, meet some locals, and dance yourself silly! All kinds of people from all walks of life will be out and about.
As you wrap up your last night in San Diego, make sure to stop at one of the best late night food spots in the city: Santana’s Mexican Food off of Garnet Ave. This Mexican eatery is open 24 hours a day, and has some of the best carne asada fries in the city! Seriously, don’t even think about ordering anything else, carne asada fries are a San Diego specialty and science shows that they taste at their best after a night of fun on the town (disclaimer: no studies have shown this).
You’ll be heading to bed with a full stomach and a big smile, happy knowing you conquered beautiful San Diego in just 48 hours. As you drift off to slumber, your mind will think about what amazing adventures you’ll be having next!