San Diego, California, United States of America
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California's southernmost and second-largest city, San Diego, is best known for its beautiful Pacific Ocean beaches and close proximity to Mexico. Despite its sprawling size, the city is nonetheless more laid-back than Los Angeles. California's first Spanish mission was established in the present-day Old Town in 1769. San Diego Zoo, among the most impressive on the entire continent, is surrounded by several museums and green spaces at Balboa Park.

The scenic Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve stands next to the Mediterranean-inspired The Grand Del Mar - San Diego luxury resort. Most other high-end and high-rise accommodations face the ocean in beachfront neighbourhoods like La Jolla, Mission Beach, and Coronado. West Mission Bay Drive and Grand Avenue contain most mid-range options. Mission Valley's Hotel Circle contains many chain motels and other affordable alternatives like the three-star Mission Valley Resort. Prices tend to be higher between May and September.

Sights nearby

One of the world's busiest border crossings stands between San Diego and its Mexican neighbour, Tijuana. Visitors can easily walk between the two cities, but automobiles are recommended for most other day trips. The nearby community of Carlsbad contains the family-friendly Legoland California theme park.

Legoland California
The first Legoland park to open outside of Europe is located north of San Diego in Carlsbad. The park's youngest visitors may enjoy the Duplo section's Playtown playground, while older children can try their hand at driving, flying, and other adult professions in Fun Town. Over 40 million Lego bricks were used to build the Miniland USA miniature park. The Coastersaurus ride is Dino Island's most thrilling attraction. This was also the first Legoland park to boast its own water park.

The picturesque peninsula of Coronado is just a scenic ferry ride south of San Diego's Broadway Pier. One of the community's most famous hotels and historic attractions is the brightly coloured Hotel del Coronado. This national historic landmark has hosted the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Babe Ruth. Visitors can explore this scenic area during the Coronado Museum of History and Art's walking tours or by cycling along the Silver Strand Bikeway leading to Imperial Beach.

Tijuana has recently overcome its seedy reputation to become one of the safest Mexican border cities to visit. Mexico's westernmost city is easy to reach from San Diego by car, foot, or public transport. Aside from its own countless 'gringo friendly' shops, restaurants, and nightlife, Tijuana is also an ideal departure point for excursions to the beaches of Rosarito and Ensenada.

Eating and drinking and shopping nearby

Seafood and Mexican may be San Diego's most commonly served cuisines, but diners can easily find food from nearly every country on Earth in the city's restaurants. Mariachi music and margaritas accompany many Mexican meals, especially in the Old Town. Pacific Beach and the Gaslamp Quarter contain the liveliest nightlife in this laid-back city, which has also developed a strong craft-brewing scene. The constantly warm weather means a large percentage of San Diego shopping centres are situated outdoors, including the Mexican-themed Bazaar del Mundo. A farmers' market takes place at the Ferry Marketplace each Tuesday afternoon, while the University Towne Center's ice skating rink provides a good place to cool off in the warm beachfront community of La Jolla.

Public transport

This city's most famous form of public transport is the San Diego Trolley, which is actually a light rail system which travels throughout most of the main tourist attractions. The Green Line connects the Old Town with Mission Valley and Santee, while the Orange Line travels between La Mesa, El Cajon, and the downtown area. The Blue Line stops at most tourist attractions and travels all the way to the Mexican border. Bus service is also available, but infrequent and sparse in several regions. San Diego's sunny and warm climate provides ideal cycling conditions.

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