How I Went to California (And Loved It)

Visiting California had been a dream of mine since I was a little girl. I grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and my father’s parent’s lived in Eureka, CA. My grandmother and I would talk on the phone once a month and I always lived vicariously through her. I remember always asking different things such as: is it warm there, is the ocean clear, can you see whales, and the list went on. I always thought of California as this glorious place and it didn’t matter which part I went to, I just really wanted to go.

In 2011, my dream became a reality. My husband was going on a business trip and I was fortunate enough to join him. His conference was in Torrey Pines in La Jolla, CA. I didn’t have a travel itinerary specifically written for this trip, as my husband was there for business. We were however able to take a day to ourselves at the end of the trip to explore. It did not disappoint and it was everything I thought it would be. I went on another business trip with my husband in 2013, and we stayed in downtown San Diego that time.

When our oldest son graduated from high school, we decided to celebrate by taking a family trip to San Diego. This time I went all out and made an itinerary so that we could get to see everything (well as much as we could in almost a week). This was the first time that we rented a home for a vacation instead of staying in a hotel. We wanted to truly be able to relax and be given the opportunity to cook our own meals to save some money. We now only stay in hotels on vacation when it is absolutely necessary.

We stayed in Hillcrest in a cute little one floor rental that was above a garage. It was gorgeous inside, and had everything that we needed to feel comfortable for our stay. My favorite parts were the spa-like bathroom and the compact refrigerator and dishwasher in the galley kitchen. The layout was perfectly planned to give the most adequate space.

We don’t mind doing touristy things on vacation, but we strive to do what the locals do to really see the beauty of our destination. Below you will find a few activities and food recommendations. If you have visited San Diego before, what were your favorite places to eat and visit?

Where We Stayed

What to Eat

Things To See/Do

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