San Diego Bay

6 Historic San Diego Attractions That Will Take Your Breath Away

San Diego is more than just the world-famous zoo or jumping whale show. Think beyond Shamu and explore all of the rich cultural attractions this grand old city offers.

And you don’t have to waste your money on fancy digs: cheap hotels in San Diego are the way to go, because you’ll never be in the room when there’s so much to explore!

Here are some of our favorite San Diego attractions that you should seriously consider if you want a unique and rewarding visit.

Mariachi Bands

Guadalajara mariachis

Who wouldn’t love a relaxing sunset filled with romantic old mariachi music and a cold Corona with lime? Old Town San Diego is accessible by hop-on hop-off Old Town Trolley and by car.

It’s filled with memorable moments that are just waiting to happen, such as the costumed, old-fashioned mariachi bands.

Old Town: Experience Enriched Cultural Life in San Diego

Old Town San Diego by Aurelient

A rich, compact cultural experience, Old Town San Diego should not be missed!

From Old Town Park that’s filled with pioneer wagons and memorabilia to the Mission San Diego de Alcala, Old Town is filled with reminders of what this territory was like before it became California.

Enjoy the historic buildings, frequent bulletins of historic information, and rich, plentiful museums in this place that’s known as the birthplace of California.

Junipero Serra Museum & Presidio Park

Serra Museum

After you enjoy the Black Hawk Livery & Blacksmith head on over to Junipero Serra Museum for a stroll through Presidio Park and tons of cultural information.

This exhibit covers everything from 1700 to 1920 for just five dollars admission fee. It focuses on Kumeyaay Indians and Mexican exhibits.

Mission Trails Regional Park

Mission Trails Regional Park

6,000 acres will keep your wildest child entertained all day! This park is filled with activities and interesting sites of Kumeyaay Indian history.

See what it’s like to roam the hills that were once hunting grounds, and try to dig up old arrowheads.

The on-site store will supply you with refreshments and souvenirs for friends and family after a long day exploring the perfectly groomed hills.

SEAL Tours

San Diego Bay

For those with younger kids (or just younger hearts) nothing beats a SEAL Tour of San Diego! Exciting and informative, these tours move from land to water just like a duck.

From gliding along the San Diego Bay (an excellent vantage point for aspiring photographers) to cruising down cobbled streets, this tour is one to book in advance and savor.

Ghosts & Gravestones Tour

Ghosts and Gravestones Tour

Knock-out a dozen historic (and terrifying) attractions all at once with the Ghosts & Gravestones Tour.

Creepy and professionally planned, this tour might be too mature for children under 13. However, if you gravitate towards horror films and Halloween, this is a must-see tour of the most tragic and haunting events that ever took place in San Diego.

Leave the expected behind and discover parts of San Diego that people usually don’t find until their sixth visit.

While you could spend all day ‘with the fishes’ or petting donkeys at the zoo, don’t you deserve something more exciting? These options will inundate you with culture, excitement, and great photography opportunities.

[images via Wikimedia.org, Aurelient, TrolleyBlogs.com]