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San Diego: What It’s Like to Live in a Tourist Destination

I hate telling people I live in San Diego, especially in the winter. While they’re moaning about snowstorms in New York, I have nothing to complain about. Still, maybe I take a little sick pleasure in my reaction to that question, “how’s the weather?”

“Eh, it’s a little overcast and chilly. About 65 degrees.” (in January.)

Yes, that makes me a bit of a bitch.  Get over it.

People flock to San Diego in the summer. I don’t want to leave. I can’t think of any place that isn’t hot, muggy, or overcrowded, so I stay my butt home.


When we first moved here, my son and I delighted in doing all the “touristy stuff:”

We slowed our roll after a year or so, but there are still things we love doing here. And things we stay away from.

What Tourists Don’t Know About San Diego


Yes, we host Comic-Con annually. We’ve got a football and baseball team (that I could care less about). We’re the little sister to LA. But there’s more.

We’ve got a huge food scene. In fact, we’re part of the California movement toward sustainable and local food that kicks ass. It seems like every week, a new amazing restaurant opens up. It’s my life mission to eat at all of them, but I’m doing a poor job.

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We’re all about the fish taco. There are those you can get for $2 on every street corner, all the way up to the elevated deconstructed molecular fish taco. (I jest. I think.) Every San Diegan has a different opinion about where the best fish taco can be found.

We’re also the Craft Beer Capital of the World, a fact that I only recently began to appreciate when I started liking beer. Now I can’t go to any other city and be satisfied with the local brew.

Beyond the tourist sights, we’ve got great museums like Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, awesome art at galleries like the Museum of Contemporary Art, and our own mission, Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala. While Old Town is a tourist magnet for its authentic adobe buildings and costumed staff, we go to buy candy at the old fashioned candy store and hand-dipped candles. Oh and eat Mexican food at any of the restaurants.

There’s also a lot more than beaches. Just 1 hour away to the east, you’re in the mountains. Go another hour, and you’re in the desert, which is a great place to camp.


It’s no wonder people have been coming to San Diego even before Marilyn Monroe and crew stayed at Hotel del Coronado to film “Some Like it Hot.”

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