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What’s Open Memorial Day in San Diego

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picture of san diego trolley in front of visitor information center

WHAT'S OPEN MEMORIAL DAY IN SAN DIEGO

Thinking of a visit to “America’s Finest City” during the Memorial Day Weekend? With median summer temps in the low 80s during the day, little if any rain, and pleasantly cool temps in the 60s at night, San Diego is an ideal destination. In addition to almost perfect weather, here is some of what’s open Memorial Day during your stay in San Diego.

 

Attractions Open Memorial Day Weekend

RIDE THROUGH HISTORY ON THE OLD TOWN TROLLEY

For an exceptional sightseeing experience, get your seat on our San Diego tour. This comprehensive tour is fully narrated and transports you to more than 100 points of interest. You’ll have a chance to get off and stay as long as you wish at any of the stops including the Maritime Museum, the Midway Aircraft Carrier Museum, Seaport Village, Little Italy, Gaslamp Quarter, the Whaley House, Hotel del Coronado and much more. The Old Town Trolley conductor shares interesting history and entertains with amusing anecdotes. Also, there are trolleys coming along all day long so you can enjoy lunch in Coronado or downtown San Diego, shop or just explore Old Town. You can even spread out your tour over a few days.

BALBOA PARK

With 19 gardens, 17 museums, 13 recreation venues, nine performing arts arenas, nine various attractions and play spaces, restaurants, dog parks, and trails, San Diego’s Balboa Park offers something for everyone. Balboa Park’s land has been set aside for almost 150 years and has racked up quite the array of family-friendly activities, including summer Food Truck Fridays, where people of all ages can enjoy live entertainment and a unique, rotating selection of gourmet food trucks. Surviving fires, wars, and strife, this mega green space at the city’s center now provides beautiful sights and fun things to do in an alternative outdoor oasis. Offering cultural growth, enrichment, relaxation, community building, educational programs, family-friendly entertainment, sporting programs, creative activities, exercise, mindfulness spaces, and more, Balboa Park welcomes everyone and is open 365 days a year. Check out this must-see attraction on Memorial Day weekend in San Diego.

GASLAMP QUARTER

As the West Coast’s premier entertainment district, guests can immerse themselves in rich Victorian architecture and history, dine at restaurants led by world-renowned chefs, and dance the night away at nationally-recognized nightlife venues this Memorial Day weekend. Tucked tightly into 16 and a half blocks, the Gaslamp Quarter is a walkable, urban playground located in Downtown San Diego adjacent to the Convention Center, Petco Park, and Horton Plaza. And getting here is as easy as a Southern California breeze. The Gaslamp area is accessible via the freeway and several trolley and bus lines. This is a must-do if you enjoy being out and about.

SAN DIEGO SEAL TOURS

See “America’s Finest City” from the land and the sea aboard San Diego SEAL TOURS.
This popular adventure offers visitors a one-of-a-kind opportunity to view San Diego’s best sights in a whole new way! This distinctive Hydra-Terra vehicle is road-ready and seaworthy all at once, with an open-air cabin that offers you panoramic views of San Diego. The Embarcadero, U.S.S. Midway, The Star of India, and the breathtaking panorama of the city from the safety of the relaxing waters of San Diego Bay are all on the agenda. And, of course, there’s always a chance you’ll encounter some cute, rotund seal lions sunbathing without a care in the world. This is a whole different level from your average bus tour.

WATERFRONT PARK

This huge, 12-acre green space that some call San Diego’s front porch is comprised of several distinct areas where different activities can be enjoyed. The centerpiece of the project is a 40-foot wide, 830-foot long, and 1-inch deep fountain. Resembling what some describe as the country’s biggest wading pool, this is a hotbed of activity for children of all ages to splash around as the 31 jets gush water up into the air. And, in true California, eco-friendly style, the water is recycled and treated daily. Among the other zones within the park, you’ll find areas custom-built for the younger ones with cool obstacle courses, modern jungle-gyms, a rock wall, steep slides, and skateboards mounted on springs. There are Garden Rooms that feature an array of flowering plants, carved out paths, and places to sit and watch the world go by.

CORONADO ISLAND

Just across the bay from downtown San Diego, Coronado Island beckons visitors with its pristine beaches, crystal waters, and friendly beach town persona. It’s here that the historic Hotel Del Coronado has been luring guests since 1888 and where those with an affinity for the beach, the ocean, fine food, and eclectic shops gather to relish in its delightful amenities. 

To gain a true appreciation of this magnificent place, take a bike tour. The Coronado Cruise Bike Tour offers fun and adventure for everyone ages 12 and older. This 10-mile ride takes you under the Coronado Bridge, past the historic Hotel del Coronado, and allows you to see many other picturesque spots. The entire tour is bike-friendly, as flat terrains make it a relaxing ride. Afterward, if you want to dial into beach bum mode, Coronado Island offers a plethora of choices for fun in the sun. There are five white sand havens on the island including Coronado Central Beach, Coronado Dog Beach, Glorietta Bay Beach, Silver Strand State Beach, and the Ferry Landing Marketplace. Open Memorial Day Weekend, each beach has its own unique personality and provides a perfect way to enjoy the magnificent San Diego climate.

THE EMBARCADERO

Sightseeing opportunities await you at the Embarcadero waterfront. Throughout the year, there are numerous events, concerts, art shows, and festivals taking place in and around the area. Whether you’re in town for a few days or longer, make sure this popular spot along the San Diego Bay is on your itinerary this Memorial Day weekend. From the Embarcadero, climb aboard the massive U.S.S. Midway, a decommissioned aircraft carrier that now serves as a naval museum. On display are 60 exhibits, 29 restored aircrafts, and several interactive experiences – including flight simulators – where visitors of all ages can take to the skies!

LA JOLLA & SAN DIEGO BEACHES DAY TRIPPER TOUR

No available tour dates in 2020. Please check back in 2021.

Surrounded by beach towns, majestic cliffs, and 70 miles of pristine coastline, the beaches of San Diego are a world unto themselves and the best way to explore them is on the La Jolla & San Diego Beaches Day Tripper Tour. Get comfy as the trolley climbs to the top of Mt. Soledad for an excellent overlook of La Jolla proper. Wind back down Pacific Coast Highway and pay a visit to the Children’s Pool where seals frolic in the sand and the dramatic seven Sisters Caves this Memorial Day weekend. La Jolla’s beauty begins on its sandy shores. Discover this charming beach town and its neighboring areas. Just a short stroll through the Village and you’ll be treated to some of the finest shopping, galleries, and dining anywhere in Southern California.

OLD TOWN MARKET

If you get the urge to take yourself shopping this Memorial Day weekend, the city has many shops to choose from at the open-air Old Town Market. From folkloric art to one-of-a-kind souvenirs from the Pacific Ocean, there’s nothing like the Old Town Market. Here, you’ll be able to browse over 40 unique shops that specialize in handcrafted items from Mexico as well as contemporary fashions. Buy a cool Mexican wrestling mask at Blanket Supply or check out the accessories and clothing for women at the Amore Collection! Casa de Aguirre is an important landmark within the Old Town Market as it displays the life and traditions of the settlers of Old Town, San Diego’s first city. The home of Don Jose Aguirre and his family, the original adobe home was built in 1853. Don Jose later gave the building and all his land to the Catholic Church. Father Antonio Ubach used the home as a site for an industrial school for Indians. Although the original structure was destroyed in 1914, it was reconstructed and now serves as a free museum at the entrance of Old Town State Historic Park. Numerous artifacts are displayed throughout the museum, telling the story of the influences the original inhabitants of Old Town had on San Diego and southern California during the mid-1800s.

STAR OF INDIA

The Star of India was built in 1863 and is the world’s oldest active sailing ship. The ship sailed from Great Britain to India and then to New Zealand before becoming a salmon hauler from Alaska to California. The magnificent ship was lovingly restored after its retirement and became an official historic landmark that still sails at least once a year. Today, the Star of India is a part of the Maritime Museum of San Diego. Visitors from all over the world can tour the ship and learn about its fascinating history.

SCRIPPS INSTITUTION OF OCEANOGRAPHY

The Scripps Institution of Oceanography was founded in 1903 and is one of the oldest and largest centers for global science research. Open Memorial Day, visitors can tour the facility and view the Birch Aquarium and numerous exhibits that teach about the wonders of the ocean and marine species. Educational programs, events, and live animal interactions are offered throughout the year.

THE SAN DIEGO ZOO SAFARI PARK

This Memorial Day weekend have a sleepover adventure in one of 46 comfy, safari-style tents that border an expansive grazing area for giraffes, rhinos, gazelles, antelopes, and other exotic animals at the remarkable San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Book a Flightline Safari—strapped securely into a zip-line, you’ll soar as high as 130 feet above all the animals below. You can even record the entire experience with a helmet cam to relive your experience at home. Also on offer are exhilarating Balloon Safaris and a Jungle Ropes Safari for kids 7 and older to test their balance and jungle skills on rope bridges, tightropes, and more.

DEL MAR RACETRACK

Got a few bucks burning a hole in your pocket and want to lay it on a long-shot to win? Spend part of your Memorial Day weekend taking in the beautiful weather and watch the ponies run at the second largest horse-racing track in the western United States. When the Del Mar Racetrack first opened in the 1940s, it was a destination frequented by the movie stars and entertainers of the day. Some of the most popular events that take place at the racetrack, in addition to the races themselves, are: Opening Day with its beloved hat contest, Friday Night Concerts, Family Fun Day on the weekends, and their Giveaway Days. For parents of young children, they even offer a daycare center.

Restaurants and Places to Eat Open Memorial Day Weekend

CARNITAS’ SNACK SHACK

The “Snack Shack,” as it’s affectionately called, serves up thoughtfully-sourced, pork- centric American cuisine and local craft beers in a fun, no-fuss environment. The Embarcadero location, open this Memorial Day weekend, offers a full bar program and panoramic views of the San Diego harbor.

MARION’S FISH & SEAFOOD RESTAURANT

A waterfront village just isn’t complete without a quaint seafood place. At Marion’s this Memorial Day, you’ll find many great seafood and fish dishes and a selection of beer and wine – All ready to be enjoyed on their bay terraces overlooking Coronado.

HOTEL DEL CORONADO

Open Memorial Day this sheerwater restaurant offers California coastal cuisine. 1500 OCEAN restaurant features the freshest Southland Coastal Cuisine. The Crown Room offers an award-winning Sunday Brunch, holiday celebrations and special events.

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