San Diego Overview
San Diego is a major city on the Pacific Coast in Southern California and is adjacent to the Mexican border. Home to over 1.3 million people, San Diego is the eighth largest city in the United States and is nicknamed “America’s Finest City”. The major industries are military/defense, tourism, international trade, and manufacturing. There is also a wide variety of apartments in San Diego available for residents who move here to find a great place to call home.
San Diego History
San Diego was founded in 1542 by the Portuguese explorer, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. The city and the California territory were considered to be part of Mexico until the United States took over the territory following the Mexican American War (1846-48). The San Diego Historic Park is the original city, but development began in 1850 to build a community closer to the bay to take advantage of the potential for shipping business. San Diego hosted two World’s Fairs and was home to several important airplane developers. Charles Lindbergh’s plane, the Spirit of Saint Louis, was designed and built by Ryan Airlines in San Diego. The city has seen several industries come and go, and has enjoyed a long term relationship with all branches of the US military since World War II.
San Diego Weather
The weather in San Diego is perfect with warm dry summers and mild winters. Described as either semi-arid or Mediterranean, San Diego’s climate produces more than 200 sunny days a year with temperatures around 70F. There is an average rainfall of 10 inches annually, most of which falls between December and March. May and June are known for being cloudy because of weather blown in from the Pacific, although the ‘marine layer’ cloud cover clears further in land.
Getting Around San Diego
San Diego is a car centric city due to its unique topography. The city is built on approximately 200 canyons and mesas. Most communities are built on the mesas and the canyons have been allowed to remain natural and wild. This creates natural separation between neighborhoods that are not actually that far away from each other. There is a San Diego Trolley light rail system, the SDMTS bus system, and the Coaster and Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train lines. The San Diego International Airport is the busiest single runway airport in the United States.
Commuting in San Diego
San Diego residents commute around the city using a network of freeways including Interstate 5, Interstate 8, Interstate 15, and Interstate 805, with connecting highways in between. In addition to motor traffic, San Diego provides an extensive network of bike routes. This combined with the year round pleasant weather, makes cycling a convenient and pleasant way to get around the city. Drive times can be long due to the hilly and canyon based terrain.
San Diego Media
U-T San Diego is the primary daily newspaper in the city, supplemented by the weekly San Diego CityBeat and the San Diego Reader. Times of San Diego is a free online newspaper covering local news. KFMB was the first local television station, and now there are several stations representing all of the major American networks including KFMB 8 (CBS) and KGTV 10 (ABC), and several Spanish language networks including XHAS 33 (Telemundo) and KDTF-LD 51 (Telefutura). San Diego radio offers a variety of musical and news choice to local San Diego apartments residents including Star 94.1, Q96, and Rock 105.3.
While the cost of living is higher than average in San Diego, the city offers near perfect weather year round, a wide variety of outdoors activities, beautiful beaches, museums and other cultural centers, and a professional sports events. Fans of local sports have their choice of supporting the San Diego Chargers (football), the San Diego Padres (baseball), the San Diego Gulls (ice hockey) and a newly formed rugby team.
San Diego Landmarks
Balboa Park began in 1868 when local civic leaders set aside land. Now spread over 1,200 acres and is home to the world-famous San Diego Zoo, 15 major museums, and the Old Globe Theater. There are a wide variety of gardens, play and recreation areas, trails, and dog parks to be enjoyed inside this sprawling urban park. Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala was founded in 1769 by Father Junipero Serra and was the first of California’s 21 great Missions. The Mission is still and active parish, welcoming visitors of all faiths. Old Town San Diego State Historic Park is not only home to a number of restaurants, theaters, shops, and bars, but also offers an opportunity to see and understand the unique history of California ranging from the Kumeyaay, the original inhabitants, through the European settlements, and early days as an United States territory and state. The Coronado Bridge is a 2.12 mile long bridge connecting San Diego with Coronado Island. The bridge has won architectural awards including the “Most Beautiful Bridge” Award of Merit from the American Institute of Steel Construction. Its distinctive curve offers outstanding views of the city.
Things to do in San Diego
San Diego offers something for everyone. Outdoors enthusiasts can take advantage of miles of hiking trails such as the trek to Potato Chip Rock, beaches, and parks where every imaginable outdoor activity is available. Those interested in oceanic biology can go tide pooling and explore the hidden wildlife including starfish, anemones, and crabs or visit the seals and sea lions at La Jolla Cove. For those interested in the military or history, visit the Midway. It is an aircraft carrier turned museum with over 60 exhibits and 29 restored aircraft. Beer enthusiasts can tour most of the 100 craft breweries in the county. In fact, San Diego is called the Craft Beer Capital of America. With four professional sport teams, fans can always catch a game, either at Petco Park, or in one of the many bars and restaurants that show the games. Golfers can take in 9 or 18 holes at Torrey Pines and try to not get distracted by the sweeping views.
San Diego Festivals
San Diego is home to countless festivals including the San Diego International Beer Festival, the San Diego County Fair, and a variety of arts festivals, street festivals celebrating the many cultures and nationalities that make San Diego their home, as well as film, music and theater festivals and one of the best Pride celebrations in the country.
San Diego Vacation spots
San Diegans do want to get out of the city from time to time and can take quick and easy weekend trips to places like Catalina Island or Big Bear Lake. Solvang, in Santa Barbara wine country offers a quaint Danish experience. Las Vegas is only five hours away by car, or an hour flight, for those who want to try their luck on the Strip. Parks such as Yosemite and Mammoth Lakes are also reasonable drives from San Diego.
Where to move in San Diego
San Diego neighborhoods are like little villages. Mission Hills rests along the city’s central bay is one of the most sought after neighborhoods due to its array of boutiques, coffee shops, restaurants, and bars. The Gaslamp Quarter is popular with young urban professionals, entrepreneurs, and artists. It was once the city’s red light district, but is now a popular location with a mix of contemporary and history architecture. Hillcrest is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the city not only by being home to a large LGBT community, but also due to its inconsistent landscape. La Mesa offers a pedestrian friendly neighborhood with a variety of antique shops, unique boutiques and a quieter, suburban feel. You will find your new home in the perfect neighborhood in one of the best San Diego apartments in no time!