September 30th, 2017
The time has come for me to go…
After spending four beautiful years in San Diego I have decided that it’s time to move.
I could come up with a complete travel guide that covers every nook and cranny of this lovely city but I don’t have the time or the energy for that. Instead I will leave you with my top six favorite places. The OCD side of me is aware that five sounds better but I had enough trouble as it was narrowing it down from fifty to six, so six it is!
I find San Diego to be quite unique in that there is something for every type of person. No matter who you are (hippie, hipster, party animal, surfer, yogi, etc.), there is a place for you in San Diego.
I must warn you that I fall into the hippie category 95% of the time so my list is geared towards places that are flush with hippies, peace, and love.
Here we go!
Number One: Ocean Beach
As I mentioned before, each neighborhood caters to its own demographic. Ocean Beach caters to the hippies (you were warned). This entire neighborhood radiates peace and love and accepts all walks of life. You don’t need to be super high, wear tie dye, and throw up peace signs everywhere you go to be accepted in this neighborhood.
While you are guaranteed to see an abundance of the aforementioned criteria, you will also see a variety of other walks of life. There is one thing all people who fall in love with Ocean Beach have in common and that is a mindset. This mindset is one of love and acceptance of everyone. You’d be hard pressed to find any gossiping or dirty looks. You can be whoever you’d like to be and as long as you are kind and loving you will find a place for yourself in Ocean Beach.
My favorite day to go to Ocean Beach is on Wednesday.
The Ocean Beach Farmer’s Market takes place every Wednesday from 4:00-8:00.
Also on Wednesdays (and maybe other days I just mostly go on Wednesdays) there is a little gathering on the grass by the beach. In this gathering you will find people doing a variety of activities: slack lining, practicing handstands, practicing acro-yoga, spinning fire, blowing giant bubbles, hula hooping, etc. There is also a drum circle that continues on throughout the night and a little area where people dance. My favorite part about this gathering is how people interact with each other. Everywhere you look there are people helping strangers learn something new. If you see someone who is awesome at handstands and you’d like to learn, they will happily drop what they are doing to teach you. I love this way of life!
On any other day of the week there are still a ton of amazing things to do:
(1) Go for a walk down the Ocean Beach Fishing Pier, admire the vast ocean surrounding you, and see the city from a different perspective.
(2) Grab lunch and a drink at Wonderland and marvel at the incredible views.
(3) Admire the street art
(4) Go for a walk and check out all the cool shops on Newport Ave. I buy a lot of my clothes, jewelry, and crystals at the little shops and pop up markets in Ocean Beach.
Number Two: Trilogy Sanctuary
Trilogy is really tied for number one with Ocean Beach but for the sake of sequential numbering I am listing it as “two”.
This place is a one stop shop for all your hippie/yogi desires.
Trilogy Sanctuary Cafe is a dedicated vegan and gluten free cafe. As a celiac I am like a kid in a gluten free candy shop knowing I can eat everything and don’t need to have a long winded conversation about ingredients beforehand. I’m not vegan but I am a fan of the plant based lifestyle. I absolutely love that this place is also soy free! I despise processed soy. All of their dishes are exploding with flavor and are made entirely from fresh ingredients! Even meat lovers (that initially rolled their eyes at the thought of a vegan cafe) are surprised at how much they love the food here.
You can choose to sit inside their super cute cafe or outside on their rooftop.
Trilogy has aerial yoga classes on their rooftop and it’s super fun! They offer all levels so even if you don’t fancy yourself a master yogi you can still give it a try. I went with zero experience whatsoever and I found it to be quite easy. At the end you wrap yourself up in a cocoon and just lay there, hanging. I mean, I’d pay to just do that.
They also have a yoga studio where you can practice vinyasa, heated (infrared), lyra, restorative, and yin yoga. (I admittedly pulled this from their website – go check it out!)
They regularly host yoga workshops as well. I attended an inversion workshop with my favorite insta-famous yogi, @laurasykora and it was the best time!
They have a super cute little Bohemian & Yoga Boutique where you can buy a variety of things including clothes, candles, incense, and wall decor.
The Events & Community
The events that I frequent are:
(1) Open Mic Night, which is hosted every 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month. I absolutely love these nights. I personally don’t get up there and showcase my many talents (sarcasm) but I do sit back, relax, and enjoy everyone else’s talents. People sing, play an instrument, perform a stand-up comedy bit, read poetry, etc. One girl performed an excerpt from her clown routine and it was absolutely hilarious, the entire place was cracking up. They host these nights on their rooftop where there are a number of tables to sit at and couches to cozy up on. On the cooler nights they hand out blankets to curl up in.
Above all, the most incredible part of these nights is the community. No matter what everyone, and I mean everyone, is so incredibly supportive of the performer. Another thing that is noticeably different about the community at Trilogy is that people opt for human interaction over their phones (gasp!). When you look around you don’t tend to see people scrolling through Instagram. What you do see are strangers interacting and friendships blossoming.
(2) Sunset Sounds Evening, which is hosted every Friday during the summer. Each Friday they have either a single musician or a band perform for a couple hours. They set up a little wine and cocktail stand and everyone hangs out on the rooftop, enjoying the music, making friends, and relaxing.
They have a variety of other events that I’ve never been to. One that I am really kicking myself on is the Full Moon Party. From what I’ve heard it’s epic. Their website lists all their events so rather than ramble on, I will encourage you to go check it out!
(From here on out my descriptions will be short and sweet. Thank you for letting my gush about my top two places!)
Number Three: Sunset Cliffs
My favorite part about Sunset Cliffs is that as long as you’re willing to get creative, you will likely to be able to find a cliff all to yourself. A piece of advice, when you drive up to it, don’t fall into the tourist trap parking lot right in the beginning. Keep driving around the bend and park in the lot at the end. There are less people and more cliffs to hike down to.
The views are absolutely stunning.
Number Four: Law Street Beach Yoga
Every Saturday and Sunday morning at 10:00 AM and Tuesday and Thursday morning at 9:00 AM there is a donation based beach yoga class hosted on the grassy cliff overlooking Law Street Beach. I’m not great at estimating numbers of people but a lot of people go! So many people go that he sets up speakers on the far ends so that you are still able to hear him. The flow is 90 minutes long and is all levels from a yoga standpoint (nothing overly complicated). I will say that it is quite challenging from a fitness standpoint. If you aren’t feeling it that day there’s no shame in the savasana game. You can always take a little nap in the sunshine while people flow around you. If you are feeling it then it’s a great way to get your workout in!
Number Five: Liberty Public Market
This place is a fan favorite with my visitors. It’s a public market located in Liberty Station complete with a variety of food stands serving every type of cuisine you can think of, a full bar, and little shops to buy jewelry, clothes, olive oil, candles, etc. They also have an outdoor patio that is dog friendly and has live music every Sunday. You can bring your food and drink anywhere in the market!
Number Six: Kate Sessions Park
The vantage point from this park allows you to see the Pacific Ocean, Mission Bay, Downtown San Diego, and, on a clear day, Mexico. It’s not technically an off leash dog park. However, there always seems to be a a bunch of off-leash dogs. You didn’t hear that from me!
Having a dog is always a perk (that’s just a general fact of life) but you definitely do not need to have a dog to come hang out at this park.
This concludes my run down of my top six favorite places in San Diego! If you’re looking for more recommendations reach out to me! I’m always happy to help. Enjoy your time in my beautiful little city!
Love & light,