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What San Diego Is Like - Why Go - Will You Like It?

Step #1: Planning a San Diego Vacation

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There's no point in planning San Diego vacations if you won't like the place, is there?

San Diego Skyline at Twilight

©2006 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

What San Diego Is Like

In a historical sense, San Diego is California's oldest city, but in another way, it's also the most modern, growing in the late twentieth century to become California's second-biggest city and one of the largest in the United States.

San Diego is spread-out metropolis that sprawls over much of San Diego County, with a population of over 1.2 million in 2006. With all that space, its population density is only one-third of San Francisco's and unless you're visiting friends or family, you're likely to see only a small portion of its 300 square miles.

Most of the popular tourist sights are concentrated around downtown and the waterfront, with Old Town and Sea World a few miles north and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park further away.

Take a look at the San Diego Picture Gallery, where you'll find scores of San Diego photographs and plenty of photo tours for ideas and inspiration.

Learn a little more. Check out the Facts About San Diego, from the world-famous zoo to the largest wooden structure in the United States.

Why Go to San Diego

San Diego has California's best weather year-round, with lots of nice beaches and places for outdoor recreation. Oddly for such a fast-growing city, San Diego seldom gets a new tourist attraction, so you probably already know the list of top sights, which is heavy on animal-focused attractions. Perhaps less well-known is that our readers say visiting La Jolla village and Coronado Island are among their favorite things to do in San Diego.

Will You Like San Diego?

If you like nice weather, beaches, outdoor recreation and animals, San Diego may be the place for you.

No matter where they're located, local visitor's bureaus will claim their city has it all, but even a city as popular a San Diego isn't for everyone. Visitors who object to animals in captivity will find their list of places to go cut almost in half. If you're looking for top art museums and performing arts, your options are somewhat limited in San Diego and if you're looking for theme parks with big roller coasters, head further north to Anaheim and Los Angeles.

Although San Francisco is famous for its fog, San Diego isn't that far behind. In May and June, as much as one-third of the month can be overcast, cloudy or foggy as the ocean's marine layer gets stuck over the land.

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