7 Top attractions in San Diego

San Diego is one of the earliest towns in California and is located not far from the Mexico border. Founded in 1769, the enchanting town lures hundreds and millions of visitors every year because of its pleasant climate, plenty of sunshine and enchanting natural beauty. The city boasts of Spanish Colonial-style architecture as well as museums and gardens. There are miles and miles of beaches and a lot to do and see in San Diego. Whether one is on a family holiday or traveling solo or are looking for a romantic getaway, the town will not disappoint you. There is never any shortage of music festivals, road races and sporting events in San Diego. Look for San Diego beachfront rentals for a fantastic and affordable stay and enjoy easy access to many of the top sites and attractions in town.

architecture, attraction, bay

[Photo courtesy of pixabay/pexels.com]

Here are some of the prime tourist attractions in San Diego.

Take a tour of USS Midway Aircraft Carrier

San Diego is the perfect place if looking for military ties. The 972-foot-long aircraft carrier is a major tourist attraction and makes sure that you just don’t skip this one. The tour appeals to visitors of all ages and genders. The USS Midway was the longest-serving U.S. Navy carrier and remained the largest ship in the world from 1945 to 1955. The impressive ship could carry more than 4,000 people. Apart from the aircraft carrier, there are other aircraft on display.

Explore the Balboa Park

The 1,400-acre site of the Balboa Park encompasses museums, gardens, and historical buildings. With plenty of green space, it is easy to note the predominant architecture is Spanish-style within the natural surroundings. Some of the highlights of the place include the famous San Diego Zoo, the Museum of Natural History and the San Diego Museum of Art. Balboa Park was originally constructed for temporary use, and today it has become the city’s most-loved park. There are trees, lawns, and fountains and one can easily find several picture-perfect spots to capture in their camera. Individuals of all ages and interests enjoy being in the park. One could ride a bike, take a walk, ride a carousel or see a Shakespeare play.

Go to the San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo first showcased its animals in 1916. It was a Kodiak bear named Caesar. Today, the zoo has come a long way and topped the lists of the zoos. The animals here are kept in the most natural settings possible. The Giant Pandas are the most popular inhabitants of the zoo. Other than that, one can see warty pigs, koalas, albino boa constrictor and California Condors. The 100 acres of the zoo also houses more than 4,000 rare and endangered animals. There are more than 700,000 exotic plants in its prominent botanical collection.

Visit La Jolla, the prime beach town

La Jolla means “the jewel” in Spanish, and as one of the most upscale prime beach town in San Diego, the location of the beach indeed makes it shine like a gem among the beaches. Visitors can enjoy lovely ocean views and dine at excellent restaurants. They can kayak, surf, or tide pool-hop. Or, one could simply walk along the cliffs and overlook the waters. Backed by the steep slopes and surrounded on three sides by the sea, you will simply get captivated by La Jolla’s natural beauty. Enjoy that abundance of activities, museums and art galleries, and a slew of outdoor activities. Families can picnic, and the beautiful beaches are the biggest draw for locals and visitors.

Sky View of City during Sun Set

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Stroll around the Seaport Village

Seaport Village is indeed a delightful place to spend an afternoon. The village is situated right on the waterfront and is one of the city’s must-sees. The area boasts of unique shops and restaurants, and one can enjoy their food at picnic tables, benches, and waterfront patios that can be found throughout the area. Enjoy the outdoor performances that are held regularly in the afternoons. Take the stroll along the waterfront of the Seaport Village, which has fun-filled pleasures for the whole family. There are free shopping shuttles that pick up at the cruise ship terminal and drops off on Harbor Drive. The waterfront shopping and entertainment complex is spread across 14 acres and is enough to keep one busy for hours.

The Coronado island

Coronado is actually a peninsula and is a narrow strip of land between the Pacific Ocean and the San Diego Bay. Its beaches are named among the best in the country, and it is indeed an enjoyable experience to be in the lively little downtown. Coronado Walking Tour is indeed one of the best things one could do in San Diego. Coronado Cruise Bike Tour is both fun and adventurous as it takes you along many picturesque spots. Another fun activity is to go for stand-up paddle boarding is, which is the newest and most fun ways to enjoy Coronado Island. You can also tour the island on a Segway.

San Diego Museum of Art

San Diego Museum of Art collection covers a broad spectrum of works from around the world. In fact, there are artworks that date back to 7,000 years ago. The architecture of the museum with finely-chiseled terracotta and silversmith work is based on Platero style. Artworks from famous Spanish painters adorn the façade. One also gets to see art from the Americas as well as Asian art and European art.

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Reasons to Choose San Diego for Your California Vacation

There are several incredible cities to choose from in California if you’re looking for a break. Whether you live there or you’re visiting from out of state, deciding which place is best for you can be tough. LA and San Francisco are huge attractions, not just in the US by globally too, but there are other cities to choose from. San Diego is another excellent option, which is still large and has a lot to offer. It’s great for everyone from families to couples looking for a romantic getaway or even solo travelers. Take note of these fantastic reasons to choose San Diego for your next trip.

San Diego Skyline

Enjoy a Relaxing Spa Experience

The San Diego area is well known as being a destination for spas. A spa experience is a great way to relax if you need a break, and there are spas available at different price points and offering a range of things to do. You might want a spa where you’re going to be pampered, or perhaps one where you can engage in some fitness activities. Anyone looking for a luxury spa in San Diego can find several resorts like the Fairmont Grand Del Mar. Rancho La Puerta is supposedly the world’s first fitness spa – although it’s over 30 miles from San Diego, in Baja.

Take a Wine Vacation

Wine lovers can’t take a vacation in California without checking out some vineyards or wine merchants. San Diego County has over 50 wineries, so you won’t run out of places to visit and wines to try. You can just enjoy the local wines by having them with your restaurant meals, enjoying a glass or two at a bar or buying a few bottles to take home. But if it’s all about the experience for you, you could also take a wine tour or go on a tasting. Try a winery tour by train if you want to experience something different.

San Diego, Cityscape, Bay, City

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Explore Areas Outside the City

Not everyone wants to try and get around a sprawling downtown area when they’re on vacation. If you prefer to be a little more out of the way, it’s easy to get outside of the city proper in San Diego. Staying at the San Diego Marriott La Jolla, you’re close enough to all the action but also out of the way. La Jolla is a lovely seaside location, with plenty of places to eat, shop, and more. It’s only 12 miles from downtown San Diego, so it’s simple to get closer to the action if you want to.

Head to the Beach

One of the best things about San Diego, compared to other coastal cities in California, is that it’s easy to get to the beach – and it won’t be too crowded. If you head to Border Fields State Park, in the south of the county, you might even get the beach to yourself. You can enjoy lounging on the beach and sunbathing, but some people would much prefer to get out on the water. If you want to learn to surf, you can take a two-hour lesson at Mission Beach.

San Diego and the surrounding county have a lot to offer. It could be the perfect place for your next vacation.

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Planning a Trip to the USA? A Guide to Travelling From State to State

If you are planning a trip the United States of America, there are so many things that you could see and do. You might have a specific destination in mind, or you might want to see several states in one trip. It will be such an exciting and fun time. If you are planning to visit a few places, you need to think about how you will travel. There are a few options that would work well. Here are some options and things that you should consider.

If you are in America, you can’t go too far wrong with a good old road trip! If you want to rent a car to travel from state to state, there are a few requirements, though. If you aren’t a citizen or permanent resident, you will need to be over 21 to rent a car. You might even need to be 25 for some rental companies. So make sure that you check out what your chosen company’s rules are. There are so many routes that you could take and different stops that you could make. It might be difficult to decide which the best route for you is. Check out a site like http://www.visittheusa.com to give you a little guidance.

[Historic Route 66 in New Mexico, USA – Marcin Wichary/wikipedia.org]

Bus travel is one of the most inexpensive ways to travel in the US. There are plenty of bus stations across states, sometimes more than airports. So it will be easy to travel from place to place. You should think about the route that you want to take, though. It may be a cheap way to travel, but it isn’t one of the fastest. So if your travel will take a few days, you need to bear in mind the cost of food and perhaps lodging. You could even choose to hire a bus or small van for driving. It might end up cheaper than hiring a car. A site like http://www.chicagobuschartercompany.com would show you how much you could expect to pay.

If the destinations you would like to visit are at opposite ends of the country, you could consider flying. It might cost a little more, but it is very quick and efficient. You should take into account the time of year that you are visiting and which areas. If it is the winter months and you are in areas that are likely to get snow, flights could get canceled. Somewhere like Denver even gets flights canceled into April! That would be such a nightmare to your plans. So think about where and when you want to visit. You don’t want to be delayed in a city because your flight has been canceled.

Good luck as you plan your trip to the US. You won’t regret it; you will have the best time ever. Just think about the pros and cons of each way to travel, to make sure that you will be able to make the most of your time over here. Have a great time!

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The Advantages of Hiring a Limousine

Getting from point A to point B used to be just another part of life. However, with more people on the highways and inattentive drivers on the road, travel has turned into a full-time job. Looking forward to a night out, or entertaining a client, should not include sweating through traffic, slamming on brakes, and losing one’s cool. For that special event that needs to be perfect, look to a limo provider for excellent service.

Types of Limos

Once upon a time, limousines were used by only an elite group of people. Times have changed and so has the clientele that need limos. Riding in a spacious Cadillac Escalade can be the start, and finish, to a delightful wedding celebration, sporting event, or concert. No designated drivers are needed and the luxurious interior allows the party to safely continue, while riding.

New York Limousine
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Black Friday shopping has become a tradition in kicking off the holiday season. However, by the time the stores are reached, a parking spot is found, and everyone arrives at the front door of the mall, a nap is in order. By leasing a minivan, there is no worry of parking and plenty of room for all those packages. 12 or 24-passenger coach limos are also available for sight seeing adventures and group fun.

Amenities

Limousines offer an assortment of amenities for pleasure during the ride. Wet bars, flat screen TVs, surround sound, lounge-type seating, and even restrooms can be found in many styles of limos. Pampered treatment is expected and never a disappointment when selecting an experienced limo service. Mood-enhanced lighting and 12-volt outlets are also available in many models. Providing solutions with confidence, is a trait of most professional luxury limo services.

Companies, like Carroll Transportation, possess a reputation in knowing and traveling, the New York City area. Always look for longevity and customer satisfaction when selecting a limo service for providing the best ride possible. Inquire about the background and training of drivers and what type of insurance is carried before making a decision. A quality limo service can provide an experience, that will turn into a happy memory, of the Big Apple.

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Surf Travel: Buying the Correct Surfboard

The Hawaiian people used balsa wood for making surfboards, but the manufacturing of these boards became big business when the sport of surfing became popular around the globe beginning in the 1940s and 1950s. Because the sport became such a phenomenon, manufacturers and surfing-enthusiasts as well as professional surfers got together and experimented with methods and materials until the currant typical material and design style was formulated using polyurethane foam encased with a hard finish like layered fiberglass or resin. These lightweight boards are still in demand today for serious and casual surfers, and many brand-name manufacturers make these boards for the industry.

People go and select their surf boards at surf shops, sporting goods stores and beach shack shops. They find them in designer boutique-type sport shops and some department stores. However, the market on the internet is growing, and surf board accessories are also sold on the web. For instance when it comes to accessories, customers may for the best surfboard wall racks choose SurfDogz.com. Competitions are held for professional surfers every year, and people love to try the sport when staying at a beach resort so the demand for surfboards is definitely alive. Manufacturers may experience some years when more boards are bought than others. Still, the sport is not dead and the demand for new surfboards will continue on into the future.

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New York: Unmissable Broadway Shows in 2014

If you are travelling to New York in 2014 and want to spend a night or two catching the shows on Broadway, this handy guide to let you know what’s on and when.

Wicked

January to March 2014

Wicked, based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, is the enchanting and empowering musical depicting the untold and surprising relationship between the Wicked Witch of the West, and Glenda the Good, before Dorothy arrives. Wicked has been incredibly successful and well received worldwide. It has won 35 awards including a Grammy and three Tony Awards.

Motown New York Broadway

[Image Credit: thegrio.com]

Motown

January to March 2014

Motown: The Musical is a celebration of the musical movement Motown. The story follows the journey of the founder of Motown, Berry Gordy, going from boxer to music mogul, and his relationship with Diana Ross. It features an unforgettable collection of musical numbers, assured to get you dancing in your seat. This musical is an introduction to Motown, as well as a must for Motown lovers.

Rock of Ages

January to March 2014

Get ready to rock. Rock of Ages is a rock musical set in Hollywood in the 1980’s, featuring all the classics from the era, including Journey, Bon Jovi, Poison, Twisted Sister, Whitesnake and many more. This is a timeless and light-hearted classic that will appeal to music lovers of all ages.

Matilda

January to June 2014

Whether you have read the classic children’s book by Roald Dahl, or watched the 1996 film, you will have fallen in love with the character of Matilda. Matilda is the story of a young girl who prevails against adversity by rebelling against the oppressive forces of her parents and evil headmistress. This is a treat for the whole family.

Cinderella

January to June 2014

This is the first time Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella will be shown on Broadway. This version of Cinderella will keep you guessing. It features the familiar fairy-tale tropes such as the glass slipper and pumpkin, but you will be in for a few surprises. Broadways Cinderella is a comical and romantic take on the classic tale.

Book of Mormon

January to July 2014

From the creators of South Park, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, comes the controversial musical comedy, The Book of Mormon. The story follows a pair of Mormon missionary boys who are sent to Uganda to spread the word of Mormon. This musical has won the Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Direction, Best Original Score, and many more.

Big Fish

January to August 2014

If you are a fan of the 2003 film directed by Tim Burton, this is the show for you. Based on the novel by Daniel Wallace, Big Fish is a new musical following the fantastical adventures of Edward Bloom, and his frustrated son Will who finds out the truth behind these tall tales. Crossing between fantasy and reality, this show is guaranteed to take you on an adventure.

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Spectacular Theatre Shows You Won’t Want to Miss

Every year people from all over the world and from different walks of life go to the theatre to experience the magic of a live performance. There are so many options and so many theatres that one can be found in most locales. Age is not a barrier for enjoying the theatre either as there are so many shows you will definitely find something for someone of any age. The following is a small selection of shows from around the globe that you won’t want to miss.

New York City, USA

The home of Broadway shows seems like a good place to begin the search for an amazing show. There is a good selection of shows playing at any given time, but there are two that stand out from the masses. The first is Kinky Boots. Don’t let the name throw you; this story has all the ups and downs that contribute to overall experience. Based on a true story, Kinky Boots follows the experiences of Charlie Price as he teams up with Lola to resurrect his family’s sinking shoe-company. Lola is not your ordinary sidekick but instead a “drag” performer. This particular show secured six 2013 Tony Awards including the one for ‘Best Musical”.

Red Theatre

The next show that you need to consider in New York is Pippin. After a 40 year hiatus, the show has once again hit the stage and won the 2013 Tony Award for “Best Revival of a Musical”. If you are unfamiliar with the story, it follows a young prince who is trying to determine what the meaning of life might be. That is all that can be said, you don’t want to ruin it. It is truly a wonderful production to see in person and what better place than at the Music Box Theatre.

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is home to a different type of theatre, black light theatre. Black light theatres offer the chance to experience worlds that are almost magical, and works to create a mood for the performances. The show Afrikania is presented at the Image Theatre and is a comical account of a couple’s crazy vacation. If you are looking for a show that is more serious than that, check out Aspects of Alice. This show is not a presentation of Alice in Wonderland but instead an expansion of her story. Aspects of Alice picks up the story at the time when Alice is older and adolescence is quickly becoming a thing of her past. Be forewarned that these two shows do have nudity. Also these performances do not use much spoken word to tell their stories.

London, UK

The West End of London is the place to go for fabulous UK theatre productions and puts on some of the world’s best performances. If you haven’t already you will certainly want to take in a performance of War Horse at the New London Theatre. This “play” is based on a novel penned in 1962 by Michael Morpurgo and documents the relationship between a boy and his horse–at least at the most basic level. The horse is brought to life on stage through the use of puppetry and seems to live and breathe. This show confirms its place in the ranks with its numerous awards and nominations. So, if you are in or are travelling to London, definitely secure yourself War Horse tickets while you still can.

If you are looking for a more family oriented show that is suitable for younger audiences, look no further than The Lion King at the Lyceum. The score includes the work of Tim Rice and Sir Elton John, and chanting that you will feel at your core. There is not much explanation needed for the storyline, as it is based on the Walt Disney movie of the same name. So, if you find that you need a break from the regular types of entertainment, taking in a performance of The Lion King, or one of the other performances mentioned, may offer a nice change of pace.

Jo Tumble is a travel consultant. She enjoys passing on her travel insights through blogging.

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Florida: More than just Theme Parks

When you think of Florida, you think of Orlando and its spectacular theme parks and attractions, which take forever to save for to make sure your kids can appreciate the magic.

You can find many fantastic deals on cheap holidays in Florida by taking a look at online offers via travel deal providers. Trust in reputable companies and cut out the middle man, meaning that you can book one of many package holidays, for less.

Florida isn’t just about theme parks, though. Famous for its lavish and extravagant attractions, that’s just one part of what the Sunshine State has to offer.

There are many other mini-resorts throughout this East Coast state. From the Everglades, to International Drive, there’s something for everyone to enjoy here.

Florida

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Take a wander down International Drive – an area that has boomed over the last several years. With an equivalent to Vegas’ tourist strip and still within easy reach of the Disney attractions, I-Drive is perfectly placed for exploring what else Orlando has to offer, including amazing restaurants and fantastic shopping opportunities.

Head to the Gulf Coast on the western side of Florida, for a holiday on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. A wonderfully hot climate all year round, and some fantastic beaches for you to sun yourself on, the Gulf Coast is far away from the theme park madness you may be used to. With excellent water sports activities, museums, gourmet food and the chance to relax armed with a fishing rod, the Gulf Coast is perfect for all of the family.

If you’re planning a trip to Florida, try and fit in the Everglades. A stunning National Park boasting picturesque landscapes and views to die for; you can take an airboat excursion, nature watch or a trip to the Florida Keys, a coral archipelago in the south.

Whatever you decide to do, it’s not all about the theme parks in Orlando. Florida offers holidays that are so much more varied than a fortnight of Disney magic.

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Top 10 Must See Places In South Carolina

Are you looking for an adventure in the south that offers you a truly unique experience?  If so, get out your map of South Carolina and start your planning.  The Palmetto State offers hundreds of great activities for family vacations, the couple looking for a quick getaway, or even the solo traveler looking for some quiet time in an authentic place.  South Carolina is full of beautiful places and smiling faces, and you will experience southern hospitality at its finest in this great state.  From sandy beaches to mountainous foothills, you can experience it all during your trip to South Carolina.

1. Caesar’s Head State Park

If you are looking for majestic views, this is the place to start.  You can hike, camp, fish, bird watch, picnic, and enjoy countless other activities in this beautiful area.  All South Carolina state parks offer views that can’t be replicated anywhere else.

Myrtle Beach South Carolina

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2. Myrtle Beach

This is the spot that most tourists have heard of.  Don’t come to Myrtle Beach looking to only sit on the sand and swim.  Enjoy quality dining and shopping experiences, and participate in all kinds of activities and attractions in the area.  Myrtle Beach is a must-see on your way through the great state of South Carolina.

3. South Carolina State Farmer’s Market

No matter where you are, visiting a farmer’s market offers you a great time.  You can buy farm-grown produce from local farms at this great event.  With the yummy fresh food available, visiting this area is well worth the investment.

4. Greenville Zoo

Visit elephants, giraffe, giant tortoises, and many other kinds of animals at the 14-acre zoo.  If you are vacationing with your kids, and hoping they learn something during your trip, you can partake of the education programs that are available for all school age children in the zoo.

5. Plantations Of South Carolina

Anyone living in America has heard about the Civil War, and the battle between the North and the South during the times of slavery.  South Carolina is home to over 2,000 plantations that once functioned solely on slave labor.  They are now cultural and historical landmarks, and provide an interesting experience in learning about the country’s history.

The State Capital Building South Carolina

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6. The State Capital Building

Looking for the place that all the big decisions are made?  This is it.  The capital building of the state survived through the entire Civil War, including Sherman’

March, and is an interesting look into the history of the country.  Construction on the building began in 1851 but was not finished until 1907, and the work that went into this building is worth seeing.

7. Georgetown

Georgetown is located along the Pee-Dee River, and is a quaint small town with the feel of home.  Beautiful neighborhoods are home to many historic homes, and Georgetown is the third oldest city in South Carolina.

8. Carowinds Theme Park

Are you looking for a theme park to entertain the kids for a day after visiting lots of historical sites?  If so, visit this theme park to benefit from one of the area’s most attractive theme parks.  Look for coupon codes online to save money on admission.

9. South Carolina Aquarium

Myrtle Beach isn’t the only place to view the ocean life.  The South Carolina Aquarium is located in Charleston, and is a classic family vacation spot.  Learn more about the sea life in this area with a quick trip to the aquarium.  While you’re in the city, visit the historic area of Charleston, and you can say you’ve visited one of the oldest cities in the entire United States.

10. Conagree National Park

Conagree is the only National Park in the state, and is one of the newest national parks in the country.  At Conagree, you can learn more about the animals that live in the area around the Conagree Swamp.  Take part in a ranger guided tour to keep the kids entertained and ensure that you are getting the most out of your visit.  You may even choose to enroll your kids in the Junior Ranger Program while you’re there.

South Carolina offers an authentic version of what the south is really like.  From plantation homes that were operated by slaves to the yummy southern food and hospitality, you will feel as if you’ve stepped back in time to a place where days are lazy and warm, and friends are right around every corner.

Article contributed by Charlie Withers, independent traveler and wine and food blogger. folloow him on Twitter @twoguyswine

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