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#4. Check out Coronado Island
Things to Do in San Diego

Hotel Del Coronado Holiday Lights at Twilight

Courtesy of the Hotel Del Coronado
Coronado isn't really an island but a peninsula - a fact that doesn't get in the way of the name most people use for it. Whatever you call it, it's on a slender strip of land between the San Diego Bay and the Pacific Ocean, barely a few blocks wide. What it lacks in size it makes up for in fun, with a beach that's been named among the best in the country, a classic hotel and a compact, lively little downtown. Coronado's laid-back temperament makes a nice break from the busier parts of San Diego across the water.

We like to stroll along the beach, stop at the Hotel Del Coronado for an ice cream cone or a drink in their bar or hang out downtown - and if you're the curious type, we think the excellent Coronado Walking Tour is one of the best we've taken anywhere, equal parts dishy gossip and interesting history.

Coronado is across the San Diego Bay west of downtown San Diego. Ferries can take you to Coronado from there, but the landing is too far from the main part of town for all but the hardiest walkers. 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 kijubi.com. You can also drive across the Coronado Bridge, which gives the most schedule flexibility and allows you to run down to Imperial Beach if you feel like it.

Pros and Cons

We like Coronado because it's just so darned cute, but with driving being the most convenient way to get there, parking can be an ordeal.

More About Coronado

If you need more information, check the Complete Guide to Visiting Coronado. It will tell you what you shouldn't miss, tip you off to more great things to do, where to eat and where to stay.

Take a photo tour of Coronado to see what it's like.

See where it is on a map. It's the plain, blue-colored pin.

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  6. Top 12 Things to Do in San Diego: Coronado Island

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