There's nothing quite like a San Diego summer.
A few out-of-state friends have been asking me lately what summer trips I'll be taking this year, and I've been replying with a befuddled look. Trips? Besides a short Palm Spring weekend and a Temecula getaway, the thought of splitting far from San Diego during the summer months hadn't even crossed my mind.
Why go anywhere else when we live in paradise?
Here at DiscoverSD, we have you covered on all things summer in America's Finest City. From where to get local sunglasses to the most popular summer festivals and the quintessential summer activities to check off your list, we have a million reasons for you to stay local this season.
Although Memorial Day weekend isn't the official start of summer (it's June 20, for those calendar nerds out there), around here we think of it as the symbolic beginning. Pool parties are ramping up. Ice cream shops are on our route. Outdoor concerts seem totally normal and indoor performances feel a bit ... awkward.
One warning, however: Your favorite beach-y spots are about to feel slightly more crowded. Like the migration of birds, this weekend will mark the start of out-of-towners seeking a slice of what we call home. Take a breath, share the sidewalks and don't scoff when someone asks you to snap a pic of them by a palm tree.
If you want to avoid Balboa, the beach and the boardwalk, make this Memorial Day weekend about uncovering hidden secrets off the beaten path, instead. A few suggestions: Catch some local music and brews at the inaugural TAPPED festival taking place at Float pool lounge in Hard Rock Hotel San Diego. A beer garden sponsored by Stone Brewing Co. and Latitude 33 will supply the beer, paired perfectly with a performance from reggae-rock group Sun Dried Vibes. (More info at wepartynaked.com).
While the tourists take over our precious taco shops, grab your grub some place new, like a sushi-style burrito from the new Pokirrito on Convoy Street or a meaty treat from the freshly-opened Carnitas' Snack Shack at North Embarcadero. Maybe hide out in the new Liberty Public Market, which boasts over 30 vendors, a restaurant and a beer and wine bar all in one stop.
You could also sneak away into Art After Hours on Friday night at the San Diego Museum of Art. Visit Balboa Park and enjoy exclusive access to the galleries open until 8 p.m. After you've tip-toed around the museum in the evening, head to Panama 66 for dinner, beer and craft cocktails.
Just as New Year's Eve is rumored to set the tone for your year ahead, let this weekend determine the speed of your summer, whether that might be slow and leisurely or packed with plans.