The area was long inhabited by the native Kumeyaay people (also known as the Diegueño by the later Spanish settlers), who lived off the land and created a proud culture. The first time a European visited the region was in 1542, when Portuguese explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, sailing under the Spanish Flag, claimed the bay for the Spanish Empire and named the site San Miguel.
In November of 1602, Sebastián Vizcaíno was sent to map the California coast. Arriving with his flagship "San Diego", Vizcaíno surveyed the harbor and what is now Mission Bay and Point Loma, renaming the area for the Spanish Catholic Saint, St. Didacus (more commonly known as San Diego).
San Diego was established in 1769 as the first Spanish mission in [wiki=356779a9a1696714480f57fa3fb66d4c]California[/wiki], at the present site of Old Town. However, due to the poor nature of soils in the Old Town area, the mission was eventually relocated about five miles up river in Mission Valley.
In the 19th century, San Diego passed from Spanish to Mexican to American hands. In 1850, a few years after the United States gained control of California, San Diego was officially designated a city. But with much of the westward expansion to California centered on the gold rush and San Francisco, American influences were slow to come to San Diego. Eventually they did, however, and in the later decades of the 19th century the railroad came to San Diego, resulting in further growth of the city and the establishment of Downtown and its surrounding neighborhoods.
The U.S. Navy discovered San Diego in the early 20th century, and constructed a coaling station on Point Loma in 1907. Ten years later, the Naval Air Station on Coronado island was established, and in later years the Navy would take on an increasingly important role in the city's economy. Today San Diego is home to the Navy's Pacific Fleet, and is a favorite leave location for sailors.
San Diego has 1.3 million people and serves as a hub for bio technologies and communication tech. San Diego's also benefits from tourism and conventions. The city is also becoming a favorite for those who are looking to take advantage of the climate for athleticism, and using a bicycle as a means of transportation,
see [wiki=014ea98cd24a6b653196bab242d54b6a]By Bike[/wiki] section.
The San Diego area can be an incredible place to visit almost any time of the year, with its mild Mediterranean climate. With coastal temperatures around 75 degrees (24°C) most of the time, the weather is ideal, with very low humidity. The climate of Southern California is rather complex, however, and temperatures change rapidly as one travels from the coast eastward. In the summer during the day, the temperature might increase as much as one degree Fahrenheit for each mile going east. In the winter, especially at night, eastern areas are usually relatively cooler. Some valleys and other areas have significantly different weather due to terrain and other factors. These are often referred to as "micro-climates".
If you're coming to San Diego expecting sunny weather, avoid coming in May or June, when San Diego is covered in clouds most days, a phenomenon referred to by the locals as "May Grey" or "June Gloom". September is usually the hottest month of the year in the daytime. Mid-September through October are labeled as the most at-risk months for wildfires, because of the long absence of any substantial rainfall. Along the beach during the warmer half of the year, it can get surprisingly cool after dark, even when it's not too cold a short distance inland. The months of March and April typically see the strongest winds. Along the coast, fog is most common September through April; it is not uncommon to experience 3-7 foggy days per month.
During the late summer and fall there is a reversal of the usual climate conditions, when hot, dry air blows from the desert to the coast. These winds are called the Santa Ana winds. Milder Santa Ana winds can result in excellent dry air conditions, but powerful ones can last days on end, significantly raising temperatures, creating tremendous fire danger, and making the outdoors unpleasant.
[url=http://www.san.org/]San Diego International Airport[/url], better known as Lindbergh Field, is 2.5-3 miles (4-4.8km) NW of downtown San Diego and is less than 10 minutes drive (or taxi ride) along Harbor Dr to get to downtown. The descent into the airport from the east is remarkably close to downtown buildings, which can be a bit alarming for first-time visitors. It is served by:
*[url=http://www.alaskaair.com/]Alaska Airlines/Horizon[/url]: (Boise, Boston, Fresno, Honolulu, Kahului, Lihue, Monterey, Orlando, Portland (OR), Puerto Vallarta, Salt Lake City, San José del Cabo, Seattle/Tacoma)
* [url=http://www.aircanada.com]Air Canada[/url]: (Toronto)
* [url=http://www.allegiantair.com]Allegiant[/url]: (Bellingham, WA)
* [url=http://www.aa.com]American[/url]: (Charlotte, Chicago O'Hare, Dallas/Ft Worth, Miami, New York-JFK, Philadelphia, Phoenix; To/from Los Angeles on American Eagle)
* [url=http://www.britishairways.com/travel/home/public/en_us] British Airways[/url]: (London-Heathrow)
* [url=http://www.flyfrontier.com]Frontier[/url]: (Denver)
* [url=http://www.delta.com]Delta[/url]: (Atlanta, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St Paul, New York JFK, Seattle-Tacoma, Salt Lake City, Cincinnati; To/from Los Angeles and Salt Lake City on Delta Connection)
* [url=http://www.hawaiianairlines.com]Hawaiian[/url]: (Honolulu)
* [url=http://www.ar.jal.com/arl/en/]Japan Airlines[/url]: (Tokyo-Narita)
* [url=http://www.jetblue.com]JetBlue[/url]: (New York JFK, Boston)
* [url=http://www.southwest.com]Southwest[/url] (Albuquerque, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Chicago-Midway, Dallas-Love, Denver, Houston-Hobby, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Nashville, New Orleans, Oakland, Orlando, Phoenix, Portland (OR), Reno/Tahoe, Sacramento, St. Louis, San Antonio, San Francisco, San Jose (CA), Seattle/Tacoma, Tucson, Washington-Dulles)
* [url=http://www.seaportair.com]SeaPort[/url]: (Imperial/El Centro)
* [url=http://www.spirit.com]Spirit[/url] (Dallas-Ft Worth, Houston-Bush, Denver, Las Vegas, San Jose del Cabo)
* [url=http://www.united.com]United Airlines/United Express[/url]: (Denver, Chicago O'Hare, Houston Bush Intercontinental, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Newark and Washington Dulles)
* [url=http://www.virginamerica.com]Virgin America[/url]: (San Francisco)
* [url=http://www.volaris.com.mx]Volaris[/url] (Mexico City & Guadalajara. To/from Tijuana by shuttle bus at the downtown Santa Fe Depot.)
* [url=http://www.westjet.com]WestJet[/url]: (Calgary)
Currently direct international flights are offered by British Airways from London; Japan Airlines from Tokyo Narita; from Toronto by Air Canada; from Calgary on Westjet and from several cities in Mexico with Volaris, Spirit, and Alaska.
Commuter flights to Los Angeles w/ American Eagle, Delta Connection, and United Express; and to Imperial/El Centro with Seaport are at the commuter terminal; Southwest, Alaska & Horizon are at Terminal 1; and everything else including international flights are at Terminal 2.
To get into downtown San Diego from the airport locally:
* A taxi from the airport will cost around $14 + 15% tip to get to the downtown Santa Fe Depot from the airport.
* The [url=http://511sd.com/sd511/511Services/Route.aspx?r=992]Airport Flyer Bus Rt#992[/url], costs $2.25 for a single ride or $5 for day ticket/pass if requiring to transfer to the trolley or another bus, and takes 20-22 minutes to travel from the airport to downtown (depending on traffic). The last bus leaves the airport at 11:25PM Monday through Friday and 10:59PM on weekends. There are two stops in front of Terminals 1 and 2 and one stop at the commuter terminal. Click [url=http://www.san.org/Parking-Transportation/Shuttles]here[/url] for a list of other shared shuttle companies that handle door to door transportation.
* By car. Driving out of the airport can be a little confusing. Unless you're headed to Point Loma or Harbor Island, you want to go east towards downtown. The first left turn after the airport is Laurel Street to [wiki=09b8b7c2cc1eef6ab516289391a53751]Balboa Park[/wiki]. The second one is Grape Street, and this has access to the I-5 freeway. For the I-5 north freeway, stay in the left lane of Grape St., or the right lane for I-5 south. The 163 north and 94 east freeways are via I-5 south (remain in the right freeway lanes for the 163 and 94 as these exits will come very quickly). If going downtown, just stay on Harbor Drive from the airport.
Beware that even discounted coach airfares between San Diego and [wiki=d0aa2dffa0da83f1f34681308d04db5d]Los Angeles[/wiki] (about 120 miles/190 km) can cost nearly as much as a trip to the east coast. Flying will usually be greatly discounted or even free for connecting flights if it's part of the overall routing, but you must leave LAX within four hours for domestic flights or 24 hours for international. Direct fixed point ground transportation between LAX and San Diego is extremely limited and taxi/van service is more costly than flying (except for groups of about six or more).
If arriving into [wiki=983dd9976ea8d12bc3977b115615a147#By_plane]Los Angeles (LAX)[/wiki] here are a couple of options to get to San Diego without flying and without a car:
* Take the [url=http://www.lawa.org/flyaway/default.aspx]LAX Fly-Away bus[/url] to the downtown Union Station and transfer to the [url=http://amtrakcalifornia.com/routes/pacific-surfliner]Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train[/url] which goes to the Santa Fe Depot in downtown San Diego with some stops in Orange and N San Diego Counties. Likewise one can also take the [url=http://www.metrolinktrains.com/routes/]Metrolink Orange County Line[/url] to Oceanside and transfer to the the [url=http://www.gonctd.com/coaster]NCTD Coaster Train[/url] the rest of the way. The fare in the latter option may be a few dollars cheaper than Amtrak but the Metrolink and Coaster trains make more stops and the timing for one to arrive and the other leaving in Oceanside is NOT coherent thus leaving the traveler somewhat stranded in Oceanside.
* From the downtown Union Station (in Los Angeles), after getting off the LAX Fly Away bus, take a taxi to the nearby [url=http://www.greyhound.com]Greyhound[/url] station (@ 1716 E 7th St) and take the bus the rest of the way. They make fewer or NO stops in comparison to Amtrak but are subject traffic conditions along I-5. In San Diego the bus arrives into downtown at 120 W Broadway, a few blocks east of the Santa Fe Depot (train station). If going straight to [wiki=f8abf41bf5d4f0064441e43046f7010f]Tijuana[/wiki] take the [url=http://www.intercalifornias.com]InterCalifornias[/url] bus from downtown Los Angeles (@ 655 Maple Ave) instead. The area between downtown L.A. and the industrial areas where the bus stations are located at in Los Angeles is sketchy, especially at night, so take a taxi. Greyhound and InterCalifronias do NOT make stops at either airports.
[url=http://www.sandiegocounty.gov/dpw/airports/palomar.html]McClellan-Palomar Airport[/url] in Carlsbad is just north of the city of San Diego and provides the other commercial passenger airport in the county. Commercial operations are limited to one commuter airline, United Express, which provide service to Los Angeles. The airport is in the city of Carlsbad, located about 35 miles north of downtown San Diego. Exiting the airport by car, turn right onto Palomar Airport Road and proceed onto Interstate 5 southbound to reach San Diego proper. There is an AVIS car rental facility on-site.
[wiki=f8abf41bf5d4f0064441e43046f7010f#By_plane]Tijuana Gen. Abelardo L. Rodríguez International Airport[/wiki] in Mexico is in the vicinity of San Diego, and may be an option as it offers numerous flights and recently added long-haul service from Shanghai and Tokyo. This allows many tourists from the Pacific Rim the option of bypassing the Los Angeles or San Francisco airports and putting them closer to San Diego or to transit from the Pacific Rim to Latin America to avoid the extra bureaucratic hassles associated with entering the US (which is required to even transit). However, closer is not necessarily easier. As this airport is not in the United States, travellers need to make sure that they have the proper documentation such as passports or visas for their respective nationality to traverse through Mexico into the United States. Also, one should be aware that border crossing by private vehicle from Tijuana to the United States involves very lengthy waiting lines. As such, changing planes in Los Angeles or San Francisco then continuing on to San Diego is the easier option for travel. Likewise travel from Mexico City (and/or other Mexican cities further south) to Tijuana may be a cheaper option as a domestic flight then as an international flight to San Francisco, Los Angeles, or San Diego.
There's also an airport bus station at the east side of (next to) the main terminal building, a right turn from the main exits, past the main building. From the airport bus station, [url=http://www.greyhound.com] Greyhound/Cruceros-USA[/url] and [url=http://www.volaris.com/en/home/useful-information/optional_services/optional_services/shuttle-service/] Volaris Airlines Shuttle[/url] goes directly to downtown San Diego. If going straight to Los Angeles take the [url=http://www.intercalifornias.com] Intercalifornias/Aeromexico[/url] bus instead. US bound buses cross into the US at San Ysidro/El Chaparral (or 'la linea' as the locals call it) where passengers are dropped off for inspection and continue to their next stop at E San Ysidro Blvd (behind McDonald's, just northeast of the American border inspection station). After clearing immigration & customs and re-boarding passengers, buses & shuttles continue northwards from there. The buses have a dedicated lane to bypass the long lines of vehicles waiting to cross to drop passengers off into the building for inspection and proceed after the vehicle itself has been inspected and cleared by US authorities to cross. If you only paid to get to San Ysidro, take the [url=http://www.sdmts.com/Trolley/Trolley.asp]Blue Line Trolley[/url] to downtown San Diego from the open plaza just outside the customs inspection station for $2.50.
Plans are underway to construct a second terminal at the Tijuana Airport, just over the American side of the border fence, with pedestrian bridges to connect the new terminal in the US with the existing main terminal in Mexico to improve cross-border access from the US.
Private pilots will prefer the nearby general aviation airports, Montgomery Field in Clairemont Mesa, Gillespie Field in [wiki=25ba39bb5835af53e2403d757e055f37]El Cajon[/wiki], or Brown Field east of [wiki=c1fd653e0bdce418da853333a589a671]San Ysidro[/wiki]. There are several more in the North County. If flying to the San Diego area from the east, be aware of the 5,722 foot (1,744m) Volcan Mountain near [wiki=60659cfda992013e610f285c46692d28]Julian[/wiki]. Private aircraft have flown straight into the mountain at night, often with deadly results. Some air taxi and [wiki=c0a81af358f62942fd5a34dcdccd4214#Air charter]air charter[/wiki] firms offer specials to the San Diego area from local airports, including from many smaller Los Angeles airports and from the [wiki=7ce648909618f7c2cda67811af537294]San Luis Obispo[/wiki] area.
Amtrak operates from the historic Santa Fe Depot, located in downtown at 1050 Kettner Blvd. The station is the southern terminus of Amtrak's frequent Pacific Surfliner [url=http://www.amtrak.com/pacific-surfliner-train]]route, which runs north to Los Angeles and San Luis Obispo. The depot is within walking distance of downtown hotels and situated near San Diego Bay. The city operates a bus line (Route 992, the "Airport Flyer") between the train depot and San Diego International Airport.
There is also a secondary rail station located at the Old Town San Diego Historic Park. It is used mainly for travel within San Diego County, although Amtrak also serves it on weekends and holidays.
The other rail service is COASTER, ☎ +1 800 262-7837, [url=http://www.gonctd.com/coaster[/url],]a commuter train that runs north from downtown along the coast through northern San Diego County all the way to [[Oceanside[/url]] where it meets the Metrolink (Orange County Line) rail service from Los Angeles and the Sprinter [url=http://www.gonctd.com/sprinter]]rail service from Escondido. Service is mostly limited to the weekday rush hours, with limited service on Saturdays, and none on Sundays. Fares are based on how far you ride; a one-way fare will be in the range of $4-$5.50. Tickets must be purchased from the ticket vending machines located at each station.
The Blue Line Trolley [http://www.sdmts.com/trolley/trolley.asp[/url] goes between downtown and the US/Mexican border in San Ysidro via National City & Chula Vista. SENTRI pass (for locals who cross everyday) helps you bypass the lines. All others have to wait in line to get through immigration. The stop for the Blue & yellow Line Trolley is across the street (Kettner Blvd) at the American Plaza. The Green Line Trolley going northeast to Santee and southeast to PetCo Field stops along the other trains at the Santa Fe Depot.
San Diego is easily accessible by car using any one of the three major interstate roadways, the 5, 8, and 15 Freeways.
*I-5 begins in San Ysidro, at the US-Mexico border crossing, and continues northward through Los Angeles and Central California to Oregon and Washington, terminating in Blaine, Washington at the US-Canadian border crossing. Continues north as BC Hwy 99 into Vancouver.
*I-8 begins near the coast in Ocean Beach and continues eastward through eastern San Diego and Imperial Counties into Arizona, where it connects with Interstate 10 about half way between [wiki=5047bc596a4bab2dc7f7c120bb22dec5]Phoenix[/wiki] and [wiki=512e0102c59ea46488deba1e7bd52ba5]Tucson[/wiki]. From the Phoenix area, AZ Hwy 85 to I-8 at Gila Bend is often faster, except from the eastern suburbs (Chandler, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa & Queen Creek). There is a mountain pass of about 4,200 ft. between the desert and coastal area. Closures or restrictions due to snow happen on rare occasion.
*I-15 begins, from along I-5 at Exit #13A as CA-Hwy 15 just south of downtown. I-15 officially begins at the I-8/15 junction and continues northward into the California deserts, through Nevada, Utah, Idaho, and Montana and eventually terminating at the US-Canadian border in northern Montana. Continues north to Lethbridge, Alberta as AB Hwy 4.
Additionally, there are numerous other freeways that crisscross the county, making access to most places in San Diego relatively easy. However, be advised that traffic is frequently congested during the weekday morning and evening commuting hours.
Unfortunately, there is no central bus terminal nor are they located next to each other in the same area. Each company have their own stop(s) or station all over the city. In San Ysidro there is a SDMTS transit center & taxi stand (including light rail stop) just north (or after walking out) of the US immigration & customs station. The long distance bus station is behind McDonalds to right (east) when exiting the border station. Major operators include:
* Travels primarily on Interstate 5 (San Diego-Los Angeles & San Diego-Tijuana on two separate routes), 8/10 (Calexico-Yuma-Tucson-El Paso. Some variations of the route diverge from Yuma to Phoenix instead) & 163/15 (San Diego-Riverside-San Bernardino). Passengers transfer to other buses in [wiki=d0aa2dffa0da83f1f34681308d04db5d#By_bus]Los Angeles[/wiki], San Bernardino, [wiki=512e0102c59ea46488deba1e7bd52ba5]Tucson[/wiki], [wiki=1b75f7197aac9bde82a11e7020169923#By_bus]El Paso[/wiki] or [wiki=5047bc596a4bab2dc7f7c120bb22dec5#By_bus]Phoenix[/wiki] to get to other cities in the U.S. and in [wiki=f8abf41bf5d4f0064441e43046f7010f#By_bus]Tijuana[/wiki], Calexico/[wiki=840dd30cab049c2c765f927504a0c2d8#By_bus]Mexicali[/wiki], and El Paso/Ciudad Juarez to get to other cities in Mexico.
offers service from [wiki=2ff4bdbec0419eb92d7fada8b262b480]Sacramento[/wiki] and the [wiki=9696e5377238098a3d700726d090e927]San Francisco Bay Area[/wiki] to southern California.
* goes up to Los Angeles, San Fernando, Bakersfield, Fresno, and San Jose/Stockton. (route splits/joins in Madero)
* offers four daily trips to and from Anaheim or Los Angeles. They no longer offer a direct route to Las Vegas
* Picks up at the parking lot west of I-5 and then go down to their own terminal in downtown Tijuana and Rosarito Beach. Drops off at the US border inspection station going north.
*Volaris Airlines Shuttle Services [url=http://www.volaris.mx/en/prepare-your-trip/travel-information/shuttle-service/]]operates direct buses to Tijuana's General Abelardo L. Rodríguez International Airport to connect with onward [url=http://www.volaris.com.mx] Volaris[/url[/url] flights south. Buses leave from the (Amtrak) Santa Fe Depot .
The Cruise Ship Terminal [http://www.portofsandiego.org/sandiego_maritime/cruise/] in downtown San Diego currently only services excursions departing from San Diego to Baja Mexico and Los Angeles. These include dinner cruises, three-day gambling cruises and 'party excursions' to the Mexican coastal ports of Baja.
The San Diego metropolitan area is sprawling. Car travel is the most efficient way of getting around the metro area. Throughout the downtown and beach communities, on-street parking is metered. Parking meters accept coins, pre-paid Parking Meter Cards, and some newer meters accept credit cards. For more information parking meters and enforcement, or to purchase a pre-paid meter card please visit the City of San Diego Parking Administration [url=http://www.sandiego.com/articles/2011-07-18/important-san-diego-contact-information/]]website. Gas/petrol prices tend to be higher than much of the U.S. The outlying communities of [[El Cajon[/url]], [wiki=66ba126410c15903a53907d043138d1e]Santee[/wiki], [wiki=1c2ab2f1c2b92b572f3bc0831daa008a]Lemon Grove[/wiki], [wiki=e81fabe19064bd5916a6d95c7720bf74]Poway[/wiki], and [wiki=5d732b773764684770d48b9249c90905]Chula Vista[/wiki] are the least expensive in the area for filling your tank.
All the major rental car companies operate at the San Diego Airport, though most require you to take a shuttle which goes behind the terminal and runway (about 2.5 miles). To get to the I-5 freeway, turn right at Sassafras Street, then cross the railroad tracks. Do not mistake the railroad crossing for Kettner Blvd./I-5 south as a few visitors have done (mostly after dark) over the years. These tracks are heavily used by Amtrak and other rail services, and there's a good chance of being hit by a train if you make a wrong turn.
San Diego Chargers - Qualcomm Stadium (in [wiki=9627a35bbe8be2df90de481ca4541f6d]Mission Valley[/wiki] is near the intersection of I-15 and I-8). [url=http://www.chargers.com/].]San Diego's professional football team has recently proven to be a fierce competitor. They play in the massive Qualcomm Stadium, located in Mission Valley. Tickets $54-$92.
*San Diego Padres - PETCO Park (in [[San Diego/Downtown|Downtown[/url]], near the Gaslamp district), [url=http://www.padres.com/].]See the Major League Baseball Padres play at PETCO Park in downtown. Price ranges for seats vary widely, from $5 for a spot on the grassy lawn beyond the outfield wall to nearly $50 for a seat behind home plate. $5-$60.
*San Diego State University Aztecs - Viejas Arena (formerly Cox Arena, in [[San Diego/Mid-City|Mid-City[/url]]; exit I-8 at College Avenue and turn right on Canyon Crest Drive), [url=http://goaztecs.cstv.com/].]The college basketball team plays their home games at the Viejas Arena in the SDSU campus. The Aztecs college baseball team plays at Tony Gwynn Stadium (also on the SDSU campus) and the college football team plays at Qualcomm Stadium.
*University of San Diego Toreros - Jenny Craig Pavilion (in [[San Diego/Mission Valley|Mission Valley[/url]]; exit I-8 at Morena Blvd and turn right on Linda Vista Road), [http://usdtoreros.cstv.com/index-main.html]. The Toreros have college basketball, baseball, and football teams which play at facilities located on the USD campus.
San Diego is served by a professional police force [http://www.sandiego.gov/police/] as well as a county sheriff department. Additional protection is offered on the major highways by the California Highway Patrol (CHP). To report a non-emergency within city limits, call (619) 531-2000 otherwise call 9-1-1 to report an emergency or a crime in progress.
The city of San Diego fire department offers fire protection, emergency medical care, hazardous waste cleanup, and search and rescue functions. If you dial 911 for an emergency the first responders will be the San Diego Fire Department. Urban brush fires are always a risk during the summer and fall, but rarely affect tourists.
Rip currents are notorious in San Diego for their strength and sudden appearance. Do not go out in the water without lifeguard supervision or at night. At La Jolla Shores, rip currents can be so strong that people standing (not swimming) in waist-deep water have been pulled out over their heads -- sometimes with deadly results (especially for non-swimmers). Except for sunbathing, avoid low tide like the plague at this beach. (This means the largest of the two daily tide cycles. Check newspaper weather page for Scripps Pier, or view the Weather Channel.) All of the major beaches have lifeguards on duty in the summertime, with only the more popular beaches having lifeguards year round.
Many of the ocean cliffs are made of a compressed sandstone and are prone to collapse, even in dry weather. If walking along the cliffs at the beach, try to be as far away from them as is practical. Obey all signs. Heavy rain may cause rising bacteria and chemical levels in the ocean waters. Care should be taken to read the newspapers or call the county health office to see if the water is safe for swimming. The Department of Enviromental Health recommends that people stay out of the water at the beaches for 72 hours after rain and to check water quality conditions on their website at www.sdbeachinfo.com.
Access to the beaches is safely made by using any of the public stairways provided; they are well maintained (except at Black's Beach) and free. The stairs at Black's Beach are in disrepair, so use at one's own risk. Wear sturdy shoes, and don't try unless you are in very good physical condition and able to climb the 300 ft. (100m) back from the beach. Beware of the false trails going down the cliffs, as every year a few people get stuck (or worse!). The trailhead begins at the southern corner of the unpaved glider port parking lot. Take a little time to familiarize yourself with the area and observe where others are going. Though a long walk, you can also get in from the north via Torrey Pines State Beach. (Parking $8 in the lot or free along the highway.) High tide will cut off this route, so plan ahead.
The bridge that connects Torrey Pines (north of Black's Beach) with [wiki=99a7c7ea3dcdede3f50e63a39420df94]Del Mar[/wiki] (former Hwy US 101) is old and in need of repair. Avoid walking directly underneath, as pieces of concrete occasionally fall off. It's still considered safe enough to drive over for now. If concerned, access this area from the south via I-5 and Genesee Avenue (exit #29) which soon becomes N. Torrey Pines Rd. Always supervise children very closely at places such as Sunset Cliffs and the Torrey Pines Glider Port above Black's Beach. It may be necessary to hold their hand at all times. If you have unruly kids, don't go there.
Thefts do occur at the beach and can ruin a perfectly wonderful day. Do not leave any purses or other personal items of value alone on the beach or in an open car. Vehicle burglaries are more prevalent in most beach communities and take place in broad daylight. If possible, do not leave anything of value in your car even when locked. Most kayak and beach rental shops offer safe boxes free of charge, and will store your valuables while renting.
In addition, take caution when around certain beach areas, as you may wander (inadvertently) onto a military instillation, where security is tight and beaches are either reserved for military patrons and their families or training centers.
Also note that as of November 2009, a temporary ban of alcohol on all public beaches and coastal parks in the city of San Diego was made permanent by San Diego voters. Violators can be given up to a $250 fine, with repeat offenders fined up to $1,000 and six months in jail.
The alcohol ban applies also to any sidewalk or street in the city of San Diego.
San Diego Union-Tribune, [url=http://www.signonsandiego.com/]]- The Union-Tribune is San Diego's main daily newspaper.
* San Diego Daily Transcript, [url=http://www.sddt.com/[/url]]- A daily business publication printed every business day.
* San Diego Reader, [url=http://www.sandiegoreader.com/home/[/url]]- A free weekly publication and the largest alternative paper in the city.
* San Diego CityBeat, [url=http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/[/url]]- A alternative free weekly paper.
* Voice of San Diego, [url=http://www.voiceofsandiego.org/[/url]]- A nonprofit, independent online newspaper.
* UCSD Guardian, [url=http://www.ucsdguardian.org/[/url]]- A free student-operated newspaper at the University of California San Diego, published twice a week.
* North County Times, [url=http://www.nctimes.com/[/url]]- A daily paper focusing on issues facing the communities of Northern San Diego County.
* Diario San Diego, [url=http://www.diariosandiego.com/[/url]]- A weekly Spanish newspaper.
* SanDiego.com, [url=http://www.sandiego.com/[/url]]- A free, independent online newspaper.
* San Diego Magazine, [http://www.sandiegomagazine.com/[/url] - A monthly publication.
There are numerous public and private hospitals in San Diego. These range from state funded institutions such as UCSD-Hillcrest and Thorton to private, world-renowned hospitals of Scripps La Jolla and the Children's Hospital. Non-profit Sharp Health Care also owns several hospitals, and has many "Urgent Care" centers for non-serious injuries such as a broken arm (daytime and early evening only). First-rate, world-class medical care can be found at any of these hospitals, as well as interpreters for more than a dozen languages.
San Diego is home to some of the most cutting edge health research in the country. The University of California, San Diego Medical Center is known for it's world class research. Some residents head to Mexico for cheaper health care, but this can be risky, and it would be more wise to use San Diego hospitals and clinics. Many of the institutions have doctors of all nationalities so language may not be a problem for some whose English skills may not be so good.
Smoking is banned in all restaurants, bars, public offices, and other places by order of [wiki=356779a9a1696714480f57fa3fb66d4c]California[/wiki] law. Although in tobacco shops and in coffee shops where tobacco is sold, you may smoke within these premises. There is a [wiki=b7ec8f614549d43d51c9eafc2399d2d9]county[/wiki] wide ban on smoking in all state parks and there are city wide bans in San Diego, [wiki=99a7c7ea3dcdede3f50e63a39420df94]Del Mar[/wiki], and [wiki=b2cc5973d75d5b151edf6bcd3ddf7eed]Solana Beach[/wiki] that forbids smoking on public parks and beaches. [wiki=25ba39bb5835af53e2403d757e055f37]El Cajon[/wiki] bans ALL outdoor smoking in public places. A new law enacted in January of 2007 prohibits smoking within 25 feet of any MTS transit station or bus stop. Beginning July 1, 2007 those caught smoking near transit facilities will face a fine of $75.
Marijuana has long been part of San Diegans vibrant cultural and economic history. Regardless of heavy fines, the population is peacefully smoking/trading marijuana in public: (beaches, parks, sidewalks). Smoking laws are enforced only to grant law enforcement with probable cause, for otherwise unreasonable search and seizure.