What are Some Tourist Attractions in San Diego, California?

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  • Written By: Diana Bocco
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  • Last Modified Date: 12 September 2019
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Tourist attractions in San Diego make the city a premier destination in California. One of the largest cities in the US, San Diego is extremely popular with tourists because of its miles of white beaches and its average yearly temperature of 57º- 72º Fahrenheit (14°-22° C). Both extremely hot days and snow are practically unheard of, but fog is frequent during the summer months. San Diego has obtained a good reputation for low crime rates and high median income. In fact, the city is now in the sixth place as the safest and the richest city in the country.

Tourist attractions in San Diego include many outdoor sports. San Diego is the premier spot for surfing in the US. Black's Beach is a world-class area for surfing, but other local beaches attract a similar number of visitors. Professional skateboarding is also popular in San Diego, with many skating rinks now officially open in the city. People wishing to try surfing should head to San Diego for a crash course on how to take to the water. Many companies cater exclusively to tourists and have learned to combine local sightseeing with the basics of the sport.


Another great source of tourist attractions in San Diego comes from the museums, with the San Diego Museum of Art and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD) being the most famous. Art galleries are dotted along the seaboard, and art exhibitions are often held in retail stores, cafes, and other alternative venues.

The San Diego Aircraft Carrier Museum is one of the most visited tourist attractions in San Diego. Sitting at the Navy Pier in downtown San Diego, the giant USS Midway aircraft carrier is open to visitors who wish to tour the officer quarters, engine room, and flight deck. Fighting planes and other military equipment are also on display, and visitors are allowed to walk into the hangar to experience life on a carrier first-hand.

Next to the USS Midway is another one of the most visited tourist attractions in San Diego: the Maritime Museum of San Diego, which consists of seven historical vessels now permanently docked. Besides a series of 19th century original boats, the collection includes several replicas and the Soviet attack submarine B-39, or Foxtrot.

For those wishing to explore the natural world, tourist attractions in San Diego include an ever-growing list of natural reserves and amusement parks. This includes the San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld, and Legoland. The San Diego Wild Animal Park occupies 1,800 acres (7 km²) of natural-like settings, where animals roam free. Legoland is perfect for younger kids, as there are many rides and games geared to the little ones.


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