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Best location for seeing San Diego

N.J.
Level Contributor
492 posts
22 reviews
Best location for seeing San Diego

My husband and i will be flying into San Diego and staying 4 days before going on to Indian wells for 3 more days. I came across a hotel that appeals to us mainly because they have a great tennis there, it's called Rancho Valencia. It is about 18 miles to downtown San Diego, we've never been to San Diego so not sure how traffic would be going back and forth from hotel. Not sure if i should forget about going to Rancho as it may be too much of a pain going back and forth. I would appreciate any advice from experience travelers or locals who know the area.

Downtown, La Jolla, Coronado or Rancho Valencia?

15 replies to this topic
San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
68,216 posts
72 reviews
1. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Hi,

Rancho Valencia is gorgeous!

When are you coming?

What is it you plan to see/do here?

I ask because we can help plan the timing of your travel. Our traffic patterns are quite regular so easy to stay away from them.

IF you want ocean views then you'd stay in some of the other spots you've mentioned.

Downtown is certainly central but will give you an urban feeling with some bay views.

I would not have a problem staying at Rancho Valencia. I've only been there for lunch but I thought it was quite lovely!

Level Contributor
39,348 posts
1,019 reviews
2. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Our favorite areas are La Jolla and Coronado. 🏖

N.J.
Level Contributor
492 posts
22 reviews
3. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Basically we are planning this trip around the tennis matches mid March at Indian Wells. I had to figure out another area we could fly into not too far from there. I hear great things about San Diego, so thought we'd fly into there, stay a few days then on to Indian Wells.

Btw, what is the weather in San Diego mid -March? I heard Palm Springs can be very hot, mid 90's!!

Miami, Florida
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
6,399 posts
130 reviews
4. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Rancho Valencia is a great resort--very relaxing and first class all the way. Good restaurants/cozy fun bar (The Pony Room) on site as well.

What were you planning on seeing?

Del Mar is a relatively short drive from where you are staying if you wish to visit a quaint beach town...from there, you could drive south, past Torrey Pines, to La Jolla.

I would spend part of a day in downtown SD, no more, and also swing by Balboa Park. Without traffic it is about a 25 minute drive.

N.J.
Level Contributor
492 posts
22 reviews
5. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Well, i've never been to San Diego so am still trying to figure out what we should make a point of seeing. My question is do i need to stay closer to San Diego or would staying at Rancho Valencia be a good base to drive and see San Diego?

Corona del Mar...
Destination Expert
for San Diego, Orange County, California
Level Contributor
59,667 posts
440 reviews
6. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Rancho Valencia is lovely, but would not be my first pick for a first vacation to San Diego.

I'd much rather be in La Jolla (La Valencia Hotel) or Coronado (Hotel del Coronado).

Rancho Valencia is isolated. If you want to be out and about, it is a hassle. For a place to flop and stay, it is great.

Del Mar, California
Level Contributor
9,403 posts
6 reviews
7. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

If you are into scenic outdoors type atmospheres and activities Rancho Valenicia is nice becuase Del Mar, Torrey Pines, and La Jolla are not too far away and are beautiful scenic beach communities.

San Diego
Level Contributor
5,743 posts
352 reviews
8. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

This is really your call. You need to decide if you will want to drive back and forth - you know how far it is and looking at Google maps at various times can give you a general idea of the length of your commute.

Not sure what you want to do - but you could easily just spend 1 day in downtown area - visit the USS Midway and then Balboa Park in the afternoon for lunch and multiple museums. If you want to do the Zoo - that might take some more time - maybe another 1/2 day.

The rest of the time you can spend up near RV - as recommended visit Del Mar, Torrey Pines and La Jolla and you'll get a good taste of the area.

N.J.
Level Contributor
492 posts
22 reviews
9. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

Thank you everyone! I have to go over all of this with my husband tonight but I am wondering if maybe i should split it up and stay either at Hotel Del Coronado or The Fairmont for 2 nights and then go to Rancho Valencia for 2 nights. Does this make more sense??

Miami, Florida
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
6,399 posts
130 reviews
10. Re: Best location for seeing San Diego

for just 4 nights (and then 3 nights in Indian Wells afterwards), I would stay put in one place....too much schlepping, especially following a cross country flight..

Edited: 02 January 2018, 21:44
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