North America

San Diego, California

Just a quick drive (or lovely train ride) south down the coast from L.A., San Diego offers beautiful beaches, laid back beauty and some of the best Mexican food north of the border.

San Diego offers pristine year-round weather, illustrious surf spots, beach towns, its world-famous zoo, and much more. With a flourishing restaurant and bar scene, golf courses, museums, energetic Gaslamp Quarter, it’s the perfect weekend getaway with friends or your partner. *Personally, when I drive in, I stop into Encinitas or La Jolla first before heading into the City, and then make sure to hit Coronado too. Plan accordingly!

See: Walk the downtown waterfront to see navy ships + early fish markets + little shops, visit Coronado Island, see Balboa Park (1,200-plus acres downtown!), Del Mar Fairgrounds, La Jolla Shores, Gaslamp quarter (for fun), Little Italy, Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, San diego Zoo, Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve

Stay: This can depend wether you want a beach resort or the downtown core. Either way, there are plenty of options. For beach:Hotel del CoronadoLa Valencia Hotel, Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golden Door, Fairmont Grand Del Mar, Estancia La Jolla Hotel and Spa, The Lodge at Torrey Pines OR Downtown: The U.S. Grant, A Luxury Collection Hotel, Kimpton Solamar, Pendry

Eat: CUCINA Urbana or CUCINA Enoteca, Oscar’s Mexican Seafood, Buona Forchetta, Juniper & Ivy,Bankers Hill Bar + Restaurant, Addison, George’s at the cove, Ironside Fish & Oyster House, Blue Boheme, Café Chloe, C Level Lounge, and fresh gelato at Bobboi

Author: Carrie Mitchell

Carrie A. Mitchell is the founder of L’Aventure Travel, the host of the Suitcase Sojourn Podcast, and author of the children’s travel book “To Be We”. Carrie is a global travel and hospitality expert who works with publications, brands and entertainment outlets on a number of travel related projects, from marketing consulting to editorial coverage to hosting & producing content for the web, TV and podcasts. She is always seeking to learn from people and places around the world, and share through her cultural exploration (40+ countries and counting)