The city of San Diego is not only one of the most popular places in the United States to live, but also to visit. The city has a number of great benefits that continue to attract new residents and travelers alike. The city’s beneficial traits include its proximity to Mexico, the wonderful beaches, the beautiful scenery, incredible restaurants, fabulous shopping opportunities, great many opportunities for outdoor recreation, and more. Another side of San Diego that many people don’t think of when they anticipate traveling there is the large amount of historical sites and attractions located there.
San Diego was discovered by European explorers in the mid 1500s and was settled in the following century. The area has a strong Spanish influence that remains to this day from its early days as a part of territory belonging to Spain. Over the years many important events occurred in and around San Diego including the establishment of several important Spanish missions, the arrival of the Mormon Battalion, and the Battle of San Pasqual. The city has a strong and long history with the American military, with a number of different facilities currently still home to the United States Navy, United States Marines, and United States Coast Guard.
Here is a look at some of the many historical sites and attractions found in and around San Diego.
USS Midway Museum
The USS Midway is an actual former aircraft carrier that served nearly half a century in the United States Navy. The ship is now a floating museum located on the waterfront of San Diego and welcomes visitors from around the world with the rare opportunity to step aboard an actual aircraft carrier. The decks, passageways, engine rooms, and cabins are all accessible by the public. There are even real Air Force jets on the flight deck which adds to the aura and showcases what the setting on the ship must have looked like during its glory days.
Old Town San Diego State Historic Park
Located right in the middle of downtown San Diego, the Old Town San Die
go State Historic Park is a great place to learn a little bit about the history of the city. Much of the site recreates life in the area during the mid 1800s including aspects of both Mexican and early American history. There are also a number of other attractions located very nearby to the Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, some historical in nature and some not.
Cabrillo National Monument
One of the most historically important monuments in San Diego is the Cabrillo National Monument. This wonderfully designed monument honors the discoverer of San Diego Bay, Portuguese born explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. There is a great drive that leads up to the monument and the setting on the hill high above the city provides for wonderful views of San Diego Bay.
San Diego Model Railroad Museum
Not many people seek out information the history of the model railroad industry, but in the city of San Diego that is exactly what they can find. Children, especially young boys, will love a stop at what is one of the more interesting niche museums in the region. One of the key attractions is a scale model reproduction of the tracks that wind through and around the city of San Diego.
Belmont Park is an amusement park located in the Mission Bay area of the city of San Diego. The park is located right on the beach and attracts locals and tourists alike. Most people don’t think of an amusement park as a historical attraction, but Belmont Park is one of the few surviving beach amusement areas on the West Coast. The park also features a number of historical rides including the Giant Dipper, a wooden roller coaster that was originally built in 1925.
The Gaslamp Quarter is a sixteen block long national historic district that is routinely rated as one of the top tourist attractions in the city of San Diego. There are a huge variety of restaurants and shopping opportunities in the area, many of them offering foods and goods that cannot be found elsewhere in the city. A large number of the buildings have been immaculately restored to how they looked many years ago. One of the main treats offered by the Gaslamp Quarter is just the opportunity to leisurely stroll among the historical buildings that can be found there.
Maritime Museum of San Diego
The Maritime Museum of San Diego is home to some of the most amazing maritime artifacts and exhibits located anywhere in the entire world. Even patrons without a keen interest in the history of ships and water transportation will find this museum to be extremely entertaining and interesting. One of the highlights of the Maritime Museum of San Diego is the sailing ship The Star of India. This is the oldest sailing vessel in the world that still sails.
Mission San Diego de Alcala
The Mission San Diego de Alcala was founded by Father Junipero Serra and was the first of all of the famous California missions to be founded. The mission is quite small but is extremely well kept and maintained to appear much as it did back when it was one of the focal points of life in San Diego.
Old Point Loma Lighthouse
For one of the most spectacular views that can be found in the San Diego area, a visit to the Old Point Loma Lighthouse is in order. The location high above the rest of the surrounding city area allows for the traveler to feel like they are in a different world. Seeing the impressive old lighthouse is also a great way to get a feel for one of the early landmarks in the area.
One of the more interesting areas of the city is Seaport Village which is a huge waterfront entertainment area that has been painstakingly molded to recreate what the San Diego harbor must have looked like more than a hundred years ago. There are more than fifty shops and a great many eating establishments in the facility.
Old Town Trolley Tour
One of the best ways to see San Diego, and the many attractions and sites located there is by taking part in one of the famous Old Town Trolley Tours. These tours on the classic trolley buses allow for visitors to become familiar with the layout of the city and at the same time get a glimpse of some of the important areas within the community. The Old Town Trolley Tours never fail to entertain and interest almost everyone who visits the city.
San Diego Aerospace Museum
For anyone traveling to San Diego with even the slightest interest in air travel, a trip to the San Diego Aerospace Museum is a necessity. The museum is home to some incredible exhibits, including some important examples of actual aircraft, many which were built right in the San Diego area. A walk through the museum will at once enhance someone’s appreciation for both the aerospace industry, as well as the role that it has played in the development of the world today.
San Diego with Expedia
Visit San Diego with Expedia, they have a great selection of flights and vacation packages around the world. With a San Diego Expedia coupon, get an added discount to wherever you plan to go on vacation. Always search for these Expedia coupon discounts, prior to traveling.
There are a number of great reasons to visit the city of San Diego. Thousands of people visit the city and the surrounding area every year and decide to relocate there and call it home. The city offers beautiful access to the ocean and wonderful beaches to view it from. The downtown area of San Diego is a fabulous place for both travelers and residents alike. One of the great parts about the city is the importance it places on history, this is evident through the large amount of preserved historic sites and historically themed attractions in the city. Visiting the city can be a fun and exciting time, and visiting the city’s historical sites and attractions can help it be just that.