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Get Outside! Parks and Canyons of San Diego

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Mediterranean sunshine and coastal breezes will entice travelers outside to explore San Diego's parks and canyons. San Diegans love being outside and no matter where you go, you will find us running, bicycling, swimming, hiking, boating, and playing outside. San Diego is full of hidden parks and canyons, waiting for you to come explore. Get outside and join the locals in some of their favorite places!
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Balboa Park, San Diego, CA, USA
A 1,200-acre green space filled with museums, theaters, and gardens, Balboa Park is the center of art and culture in San Diego. It’s also one of the city’s most historic sites, built for the Panama–California exhibition in 1915....
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400 Kettner Blvd, San Diego, CA 92101, USA
San Diego is so pretty at night, with the lights reflecting in the water. If you're staying downtown, just head over to Sea Port Village to the North and/or South Embarcadero Parks. Both parks encircle the Embarcadero Marina. Personally, I think...
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San Diego, CA 92129, USA
Covering more than 2,300 acres, Black Mountain Open Space Park features some 20 miles of trails just 45 minutes from downtown. Take the 2.5-mile hike up to the peak for spectacular views of downtown San Diego, Point Loma, Torrey Pines, and even...
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2688 E Mission Bay Dr, San Diego, CA 92109, USA
At 4,235 acres, Mission Bay Park is the largest man-made aquatic park in the U.S. Here, water-sports enthusiasts can enjoy everything from kayaking, windsurfing, and wakeboarding to snorkeling, scuba diving, and fishing, while landlubbers can take...
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1498 13th St, Imperial Beach, CA 91932, USA
The Tijuana Estuary is a small intertidal coastal estuary on the international border between California and Mexico. This place is a fantastic place for bird watching. Over 350 species of birds have been recorded in this wetland habitat. This is...
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2200 Shelter Island Dr, San Diego, CA 92106, USA
San Diego is an ocean front city, so there are many places to walk by the ocean. Shoreline Park on Shelter Island is one of my favorites because you can see the downtown skyline view while enjoying a stroll beside the water. The park is a mile...
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San Diego, CA, USA
Just a short drive north from downtown San Diego, the 2,000-acre Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve offers an idea of what Southern California looked like before its coastlines were developed. Experience the area by taking a short walk from the...
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Central Beach, Coronado, CA 92118, USA
Backed by historic mansions and a Victorian hotel, Coronado Central Beach recalls a bygone era. Park for free on Ocean Boulevard and make your way past purple-tinged beach grass to the soft sand, which is full of mica that shimmers in the...
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La Jolla, San Diego, CA, USA
Many people don't realize this, but although La Jolla, California, is portrayed as a separate city, it is actually a community within the city of San Diego. A short 15-20 minute drive from downtown San Diego takes you to the dramatic coastline....
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3900 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101, USA
Spanish Landing park is a historical landmark, the site commemorates the 1769 meeting of the Gaspar DePortola and Father Junípero Serra expeditions. It is a beautiful park found along the San Diego Bay. What I like most about this park are the...
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4909 Pacific Hwy c, San Diego, CA 92110, USA
Any San Diego local will tell you that traffic here is a headache and that you can't really expect much from public transportation. However, that has changed in the last couple years with DecoBike Stations, so really this is a local's secret- but...