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Things to Do in San Diego

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#2. Tour the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier
Things to Do in San Diego

A USS Midway Tour Guide

©2006 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.
Given San Diego's military ties, it's the perfect place to turn a 972-foot-long aircraft carrier into a tourist attraction. Before you move on, thinking the last thing you want to do is visit an old ship, no matter how big it is, it's worth noting that Tripadvisor reviewers rank the Midway #1 of all attractions in San Diego - and its appeal seems to span all ages and genders.

The USS Midway was the longest-serving U.S. Navy carrier of the 20th century and largest ship in the world from 1945 to 1955, carrying more than 4,000 people. Besides the big ship itself - which is impressive enough by itself - you'll find more than 25 aircraft on display, a fraction of its theoretical capacity of more than 100.

The Midway is located along the waterfront, between the cruise ship terminal and Seaport Village, easily accessible by foot from downtown and the Gaslamp. If you're getting there from somewhere else, the San Diego Trolley stops three blocks from USS Midway at the Santa Fe Depot. The Hop On-Hop Off Trolley also stops here as well as other sights, and it's a good way to get around town without driving and parking hassles. The Hop On-Hop Off Trolley stops here as well as other sights, and it's a good way to get around town without driving and parking hassles. You can order your trolley tickets from Viator.com. They guarantee the best price.

Pros and Cons

To us, the best part of the Midway is its docents, many of them military retirees who served on the Midway or ships like it. When you hear about the what it took to get an airplane into the air, it's probably not a memorized speech, but an account from someone who was actually involved.

On the downside, it's a big ship that wasn't built for tourists - if you have trouble getting around, you may be exhausted by all the stairs and walking or have to skip some parts of the tour.

More About the USS Midway

If you're convinced you want to go, no advance planning is required. You can buy your tickets at the box office.

If you need more information, check the Complete Guide to Visiting the USS Midway. It will tell you about hours, how to get tickets, admission discounts, how to get there and the best time to go.

See where it is on a map.

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