10 Best Outdoor Activities to Enjoy Year-Round in San Diego

The weather in San Diego is a major reason why the city is one of the nation's most popular vacation destinations. Ask a San Diegan where his or her umbrella is and odds are that they don't have a clue... if they even have an umbrella to begin with.

With so many outdoor activities to choose from, it's important to mention how this list was narrowed. You won't find shopping listed since the majority of shopping malls and districts are outdoors to begin with. Just know that if the weather is great--or even it if isn't--retail therapy al fresco is always a possibility.

With 70 miles of beaches each offering different amenities and experiences, it could have been easy to make this an entire list dedicated to sand and surf. In fact, some residents might argue that's the right thing to do. However, La Jolla Shores Beach is a perfect place to learn how to surf, launch a kayak or let the kids run around while Coronado Municipal Beach is another popular choice for calm water and expansive sand. The remainder of the activities listed provide fantastic photo, picnic and educational opportunities for all ages.

The weather averages 70 degrees year-round though it's important to mention that "May grey" and "June gloom", really does mean that the sun hides behind a marine layer often during these months, though shorts are still prevalent.



The orange and green trolleys have been touring San Diego for over 20 years. Trolleys depart every 30 minutes from 11 stops (covering over 100 points of interest), so guests can hop on and off at their leisure. The eco-friendly trolleys also run...  Read More



The Children's Pool is a beach in La Jolla that is famous for seal sightings on sand and in the water. Its name is derived from the original intent. In 1931, local philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps had a seawall built to protect the area and...  Read More

Cabrillo National Monument
Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona


Don't leave San Diego without visiting the Cabrillo National Monument, perched high on the cliffs at the end of the Pt. Loma peninsula. You'll be awed by the spectacular view onto San Diego Bay, downtown San Diego, and the mountains looming...  Read More

Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve and Beach


Along the bluffs overlooking the sea there are eight miles of trails through the unique landscape and due to conservation efforts the state park is one of the wildest, most undeveloped spots in the state. The twisted Torrey pine tree is found in...  Read More



Ranked the #1 paragliding school in America since 2000, Torrey Pines Gliderport is a city-owned private-use glider airport. You can't really beat the view from the sky, but it's pretty spectacular from the ground, too. You can take lessons, fly...  Read More



There is so much to do here, it's hard to begin. Two hotels, the La Jolla Shores Hotel and the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club, offer guests amazing access and beach amenities. It's one of the best beaches to learn surfing, scuba and...  Read More



Widely considered one of the top ten beaches in the US, the seaward side of Coronado Island is exceptionally clean, with wide stretches of sand. The northern end, "North Beach," is dog-friendly and popular for surfing in the summer. The main...  Read More

Old Town San Diego State Historic Park
Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona


Find out what life was like in Mexico and early America back in the 1800s. This spot is where the city of San Diego was born, and it contains historic treasures unearthed by archeologists over the years. The historic park includes several...  Read More

Balboa Park


With over 85 cultural and recreational facilities, Balboa Park is a must-see. It's probably best to start at the Visitor's Center to pick up a map and events calendar, and to purchase a Balboa Park Passport, which provides entrance to most of...  Read More

San Diego Zoo
Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona


A trip to San Diego isn't complete without a visit to the world-famous San Diego Zoo. Located in Balboa Park on 100 acres, the Zoo is home to more than 4,000 animals and 800 species, many of them rare or endangered. Wander through the lush...  Read More


Meet Katie Dillon

Katie Dillon originally moved to the seaside community of La Jolla to attend UC San Diego. When the opportunity presented itself, she and her husband set off for a 7 year stint overseas as...  More About Katie