With NACW 2016 coming up in San Diego, California, we’d like to highlight our San Diego favorites. From restaurants to breweries to cultural sights and local activities, San Diego is a fantastic host city for our conference! We’re particularly excited that the conference is being held over Cinco de Mayo, as San Diego is well known for their fantastic Mexican food and local craft beers!
|I went to the Museum of Photographic Arts when I was there once and it was pretty good. I recommend it. It’s in Balboa Park, so it’s near other attractions too.
Also it’s always fun to check out the lobby of the Horton Grand Hotel. It’s in the Gaslamp area and not far from the hotel.
|If you’ve ever had a burrito and thought, “This would even better with French fries instead of rice,” you’re in the right town. There are numerous spots that serve California burritos in and around San Diego. Two of the more popular options, Nico’s and Roberta’s, have multiple locations.
For folks who want to go with a slightly healthier Mexican option, there are fish taco joints aplenty. Blue Water Seafood Market and Oscar’s Mexican Seafood are both fairly close to the Manchester Grand Hyatt, and Rubio’s is the OG chain in case you’re in a hurry.
Last but not least, try lots of craft beer. San Diego is one of the best beer towns in the U.S., with more than 100 breweries and brewpubs in the area. Stone Brewing and Green Flash are probably the most famous operations, but other great breweries include Alesmith, Modern Times, Ballast Point (a personal favorite), The Lost Abbey, Lightning, Société, and Coronado. Most, if not all, of these breweries have tours as well.
|Mexican food in Old Town.
|Take the ferry to Coronado Island, walk across the island (fairly long walk), stroll around the Hotel Del Coronado.
|My favorite spot in San Diego – Balboa Park is the Spanish Village Art Center. Enjoy wandering in and out of the old Spanish-style buildings while checking out all the cool art. Plus it’s close to the zoo, which is an obvious San Diego favorite.
|San Diego has a bike share program! And there several bike stations super close to the conference hotel – literally steps away. A two-hour rental is only $12. Bring your helmet though as helmets are not provided.
|Point Loma Seafood’s for a great dining option.
Sunset Cliffs for some nature experiences or surfing.
Solid Rock San Diego (Old Town)
|Right across the street from the hotel is a great bar and restaurant Lion’s Share, offering craft cocktails and exotic meats (their antelope sliders are pretty popular) and a great happy hour. Walk a little further, and you can enjoy the outdoor space, drinks, food trucks and games at The Quartyard.
And no trip to southern California is complete without fish tacos. One of the absolute best is local favorite The Fish Shop in Pacific Beach, where you can order almost any kind of fish with your choice of seasonings.
|Instead of sharing a favorite San Diego spot, I wanted to remind people that NACW overlaps with Cinco de Mayo. While the conference doesn’t take place in Mexico, it is in very close proximity to it and San Diego is a great place to enjoy Mexican culture, cuisine and music and honor this important day in Mexican history. Old Town hosts a massive Cinco de Mayo celebration that goes from May 5-8 and includes music and performances on four stages, margarita gardens, tequila tasting and mariachis.
|One of my favorite spots in San Diego from my undergraduate days is the Mission Café. I went to the original Mission Café and Coffeehouse in Mission Beach – amazing breakfasts! They now have 3 locations, including one on J Street in the East Village downtown.
|If you happen to be a baseball fan, the Padres are at home May 2 – 8, 2016. Petco Park is an open-air, modern day throw-back ballpark perfectly suited for sunny days in San Diego.
|Jolt’n Joe’s, a fabulous dive for the entire family to play pool or ping pong, watch your favorite game, enjoy a nice selection of brews, with wonderful bar food to boot! We have enjoyed it on several occasions, right in the Gas Lamp District! If you are looking for upper crust ambiance, this place is not for you!
|PetCo Park is really the main reason I’m ever in SD! In fact, I’ll probably stay to see a game the weekend after the conference.