Sure, some folks have left their hearts in San Francisco and why not, it is one beautiful City by the Bay. bit further north there is the awesome heart of wine country in Napa and Sonoma where splendid grapes become the true wine of love.
Go south along the coast and experience an unending array of some of this world’s most spectacular beauty arriving eventually in the lovely town of Santa Barbara with an abundance of attractions including its filled with fun and great food pier. Keep moving to the south and you will arrive in the fabled Malibu home to many movie stars and other folks who just enjoy the very best in natural beauty.
As your southward journey continues you will reach Santa Monica which from the ocean is the gateway to the big daddy, Los Angeles, City of Angels and home to Hollywood. But only about 128 more miles south through many charming towns and beach cities and you will finally arrive in what may well be the most magnificent jewel in California’s undeniably spectacular crown, San Diego.
San Diego is smaller than Los Angeles and therefore has a warmer, less crowded feel. Yet San Diego, while less in population, is every bit equal in natural beauty and filled with its own captivating history. Some of the best known highlights of San Diego include its world renowned zoo, the utterly charming Gaslamp Quarter and extremely inviting Little Italy with an abundant array of superb restaurants, each with its own delicious meals in authentic Italian style.
One of my personal snack stores for some tongue tantalizing tasty gelato is Gelaterie Bucci at 1602 State Street, San Diego, California. The number of truly five star restaurants in San Diego is almost overwhelming, but oddly one of my favorite is a true rarity because it is in a hotel where truly top end food is often more imagination than reality.
At the Sheraton Marina, 1380 Harbor Island Drive, San Diego you will find the five star Harbor’s Edge restaurant where I recently enjoyed an incredible crab cake and steak plate that was nothing less than perfection to my taste buds. And not only is their food delicious but you enjoy it while looking out into the marina with its vast collection of beautiful sail boats and motor yachts. Great food, great times.
One of my favorite activities in San Diego is a walk along the shore line from about Harbor Island Drive and Laurel Street to the USS Midway ship and museum. It is a never ending visual treat as you pass the Coast Guard facility and continue on while watching dozens of sail boats traversing the harbor. You will eventually pass a square rigger and a docking facility for Hornblower cruises offering yet another great option for your visit, an unforgettable diner cruise.
Keep going and you will eventually arrive at the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier that was a key player in World War II and also the ship which helped evacuate hundreds of Vietnamese refugees during the fall of Saigon in April of 1975. It is a huge slice of both American history in general and naval history in particular.
But before reaching the Midway you can also turn eastbound and visit the Gaslamp Quarters and/or Little Italy, the options are many and none disappoint. There are plenty of guides and even paid tour options available, but my personal favorite is just a nice casual walk because it does the best job of truly connecting you with the amazing beauty that abounds in San Diego while at the same time making a positive contribution to your health. Sure all of those other places have a great of sights to see, experience and enjoy, but San Diego is not to be missed.
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Photos by Ron Irwin
Top photo: The San Diego skyline at night
Ron Irwin was born in Chicago, Illinois a long time ago. He served in the Marine Corps in Vietnam, became a trial lawyer, TV and radio host, CEO of a public company and once held an Emmy. He never won an Emmy he just held one. Ron has written and published twelve books. His most important book to date is “Live, Die, Live Again” in which Ron tells of his early life and his unexpected and very temporary death in 2012. That experience dramatically refocused his life and within the pages of that book Ron reveals how he achieved a much healthier life, ridding himself of Diabetes, Cancer and Heart Failure. Now Ron enjoys writing about many things including health topics, travel [he has circled the globe several times], adventure, culinary experiences and the world of performing art. Ron’s motto is “Live better, live longer and live stronger because it feels great and annoys others.” Contact the author.