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A Local’s Guide to San Diego

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If you’re planning a trip to San Diego and don’t want to fall into every tourist trap like the millions of other annual visitors, read this local’s guide to San Diego. These tips will help you experience the beautiful sights and must-see hot spots like a true San Diegan. And when it comes to blending in, replace “ya’ll” with “dudes” and lose the fanny pack and we think you’ll do just fine.

Skip the highly populated San Diego Beaches of Del Mar, La Jolla and Torrey Pines and instead head to beautiful Sunset Cliffs, Windansea or Swamis to escape the crowds while still being able to experience unparalleled ocean views. More tips on beachin’ it like a local:

  • Keep your clothes on, no nude beaches here
  • Leave the booze at home
  • If you’re going to surf or body board, you better know what you’re doing. San Diego surfers take their sport seriously

If you’re going to attempt to tour the big name attractions like SeaWorld and the San Diego Zoo, then try to skip the primetime weekend days and instead opt for a Tuesday or Wednesday day during the off-peak winter season.

  • Take advantage of the free shows offered by both parks for additional family fun
  • Pick up a map, it’s the easiest way to plan your day
  • Bring snacks and water to save money
  • Stay at a cheap downtown hotel near SeaWorld for the most convenience

Experience “off the beaten path” nightlife in North Park or Ocean Beach. San Diego’s Gaslamp District can be a lot of fun, but most locals will tell you that parking downtown on a weekend night is torturous. To avoid the hassle, head to one of the other aforementioned hot spots where you can drink and dance the night away for half the price. Try out these popular favorites among locals:

  • North Park- Seven Grand for great whiskey cocktails or Toronado for craft beers galore.
  • Ocean Beach- South Beach Bar & Grill for socializing and OB Noodle House for $2 beer.

Don’t leave San Diego without trying In-N-Out because it really is what it’s all about. Cheap burgers with special sauce right off the grill. A little inside tip- there’s a secret menu!

  • You can add up to four beef patties by asking for a 3×3 or 4×4.
  • You can order the buns “mustard grilled.”
  • Ask for an off-the-menu grilled cheese.
  • Want pickles or grilled onions? Just ask.
  • Their famous Animal Style Burger comes with extra Thousand Island sauce, mustard grilled patties and pickles. Animal Style Fries are topped with Thousand Island, cheese and grilled onions.

Hopefully these tips help you enjoy some of the lesser-known wonders in San Diego during your vacation. If you’re still in need of a place to stay, heed one more tip from a local and stay at Marina Inn hotel near downtown San Diego. This affordable hotel is near all of the city’s main attractions and offers great discounted room rates. To book a cheap San Diego hotel room today click here or call us at 1-800-571-2933.

Advance Booking

14 Days - 12% Off

7 Days - 10% Off

3 Days - 8% Off

Zoo & Seaworld Discount

15% OFF

With any purchase of
Zoo or Seaworld tickets

Weekday Discount

10% OFF

Stay any day
Sunday - Thursday

Other Discounts

10% OFF

AAA, Military, AARP
Other Package

Marina Inn San Diego Pet Friendly Hotel Marina Inn San Diego Hotel Accepts AAA Members

Call: 1-800-571-2933
For Rates and Reservations