San Diego

The beaches in San Diego are revered for good reason. Visitors travel miles and miles to take a swim in the Pacific Ocean. But when winter comes, only the determined surfers wearing wet suits dare to brave the waves. That doesn’t mean the beaches become dead zones, though; there are still plenty of activities to experience throughout the city. Here are a few beach towns that are great to visit year-round.

Mission Beach photo by @_chadmcdonald_

Mission Beach

As our city’s take on the lively boardwalk, Mission Beach is a fan-favorite destination with a landmark roller coaster. Belmont Park is an amusement park filled with rides, games, restaurants and shops. You can play in the arcade, ride the famous Great Dipper rollercoaster and grab a cocktail or martini all at the same place, so it’s a perfect date spot. There’s also laser tag, Dole whip frozen treats, and a carousel — making it a great family destination. Visit Belmont Park’s website for more information and keep in mind that SeaWorld San Diego is just down the street.

Kate Sessions Park photo by @itzeeelj

Pacific Beach

Pacific Beach is mostly known for its wild nightlife for those in their early 20s. But it offers a lot more. The main strip on Garnet has over 10 blocks of restaurants and bars, so you have plenty of options to whet your whistle or feed your hunger. Check out Iron Pig Alehouse for delicious smoked BBQ in a more upscale environment or The Patio on Lamont for a quaint, pet-friendly brunch. You could also head a few minutes north to Kate Sessions Park for a picnic with a killer view. And who knows — maybe you’ll feel like dancing and joining an eventful bar crawl down to the ocean.

Sunset Cliffs photo by

Ocean Beach

Ocean Beach is in a world of its own. This laid-back neighborhood is filled with friendly people and diverse culinary spots. And it’s home to one of San Diego’s most famous burger joints: Hodad’s, which was featured on the Food Network. But it also has some other noteworthy highlights you won’t find anywhere else. Wonderland is located right on the beach and has some of the best views in the city. It was San Diego’s first amusement park back in 1913. Pro tip: bar guests and staff enjoy a complimentary cheers everyday at sunset. Just south is Sunset Cliffs, where you can take inspiring photographs of the rugged coastline. (But watch where you step! Some of those surfaces are unstable and it’s best to be safe.)

The beaches above are just three out of more than 100 named beaches in San Diego — each with its own set of unique characteristics, people, and places. Next time you think visiting San Diego is only for the summer, remember that we actually enjoy a climate that’s pretty consistently 72 degrees and sunny. And keep these beaches and their neighborhoods in mind!