America’s Finest City: San Diego, CA

Real Estate Agent with Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 CA BRE# 01261476

America’s Finest City

San Diego, CA



Have you ever heard the story of the tourist that went on vacation and never left? Have you ever fantasized about living in your favorite vacation spot? Well my friends, I’m living that dream the last 14 years! My bride and I vacationed here in San Diego & La Jolla, CA the summer of 2003 and were living here by Thanksgiving! We’ve lived in La Jolla, and San Diego’s University City & Sorrento Mesa; all make up University Towne Centre (UTC as the locals call it).

 la jolla

UTC, my Neighborhood & Office Location

I have stood with my toes in the surf on the beach of the CA coastline to soak them after hiking a mountain trail early that morning. After lunch I have explored a desert community on my way to play in the snow. No planes, no days long journey, I did all of this between 7am and 7pm one January day and I never left San Diego County. That is the beauty of living here, it’s all here!


 UTC La Jolla at Renaissance

I’m not going to provide you lists of typical tourist spots, you can learn all that about San Diego from the internet, TV and; you don’t need another blog about: theme parks, beaches, trails, restaurants, malls, parks, sports teams, camping, snow sports, water sports & boating, culture or the ability to be in Mexico within 30 minutes of Downtown San Diego. So let’s talk about living in San Diego in a way you can’t learn it from Google.


When you first move here, you pinch yourself for about 5 years before it sets in that “YES! I really do live here!” It’s amazing to see the ocean from the 5 freeway on the way to work; to drive past iconic locations like Balboa Park, Sea World & Lego Land on the way to a meeting. You are in awe as you sit in a networking meeting in the SD Chamber of Commerce board room, on the 10th floor overlooking the Downtown skyline, harbor, ocean and Coronado Island.


If you are in love here, there are so many romantic inns, B&B’s, hotels, restaurants, trails and beaches to enjoy. There are magical sunsets at the beach or from your ocean view table at The Marine Room restaurant, or the 240 degree view of Downtown & the ocean high atop Mr. A’s restaurant. You’ll discover having a Zoo membership means going without the kids, walking through the zoo for the fun of it off season, or huddled under an umbrella on a rainy day or under the lights at night to steal a kiss. How about ice skating on the beach at The Del Coronado Hotel in December? Yep, that and so much more can be found here by those looking for love or celebrating it!



Sunset on Coronado at The Del Coronado Hotel


If you move here with kids, you’ll inevitably do all the theme parks in the beginning, (like we did) but the crowds get old and admission gets expensive. So, you soon discover kayaking, snorkeling, boating, museums, hiking trails and the many parks. The beach never gets old and you find that you do love the outdoors; San Diego brings that out of you. We also have some amazing school districts here!


If you are a foodie or vegetarian you’ll find many farmers markets, amazing restaurants from pubs & taverns to wonderful CA cuisine, farm-to-table and fine dining. You can eat fish here that was swimming hours earlier too and if you’ve never tried them, get ready for fish tacos! I had never even heard of them when we moved here, now I’m an addict.

tower 23

Dining by the ocean at Tower 23 in Pacific Beach


Let’s talk over 100 micro-breweries, beer gardens and restaurants too. If you love hand crafted beers and the fun foods that compliment them, San Diego is up there with Portland Oregon for one of the top local brewery towns in the country! Ballast Point and Karl Strauss are two of my favorite beer gardens here.


You’ll discover the STAYcation! We’ve been here 14 years and still discover new attractions, places to visit and events to attend. We often book hotels in different parts of the county and just explore, attend functions and flop! We love it when hotel staff ask “where are you visiting us from?” and we reply “oh, about 15 minutes West of here.”

la jolla

La Jolla Cove at Sunset


If you’re retiring/retired, San Diego County has many 55 and up communities, over 100 golf courses and some very upscale condo & manufactured home communities where you can lock up & go. There is a very active senior community here and the weather is gorgeous 10 months per year and cooler but quite beautiful the other two months. Many of my clients are retirees living the dream!


If you are into water sports, boating, biking & hiking trails, you have surfing, or even snow fun: snow boarding/skiing, desert, beach, mountains all within the county. We have many Indian Casinos too with great concert venues attached. Hand gliding, scuba diving, flying private planes, skydiving, horseback riding, San Diego is also very dog friendly!


If you are into music, we have quite the scene: indoor & outdoor venues, concert stadiums to jazz in the park. Every style of music can be found in our concert venues, local bars, night clubs and festivals under the stars.


Culture you say. We’re a melting pot I’m proud to boast; you can here 5-10 different languages spoken here in a given day between the transplants, tourists and our friends from south of the border. We have theater, film, comedy clubs, opera, symphony, play houses, lecture series and many museums and historical landmarks. If you are a history buff, you’re in heaven here!


 The San Diego Public Library Downtown


So, no pictures of Shamu or tips on how to line cut at Sea World here, but I hope you can feel a little of what made my bride, son & I fall in love with it here, in San Diego, America’s Finest City and weather-wise, the Hawaii of the Mainland!



Come for a visit to San Diego, CA and I'll bet you'll find it hard to leave America's Finest City!


Posted by

REALTOR®, CRS, RCS-D, CDPE, ePro, Certified:Military Home Specialist,

Certified: Luxury Home Specialist Podcast Host, Author & Keynote Speaker


Brokered by Big Block Realty

Do You Know The Market Says Your Home is Worth?

CA-BRE# 01261476, since 1999  (My Team)

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Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor e-Pro, CRS, RCS-D, Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Check out Noah Seidenberg's: 

Love Where You Live- An ActiveRain Contest August 

Aug 30, 2016 12:47 AM #1
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi Thomas

You have certainly captured so well the essence of why so many people like living here and the reputation San Diego has. I've been thrilled with living here for over 10 years now!


Aug 30, 2016 12:55 AM #2
Bill Roberts
Brooks and Dunphy Real Estate - Oceanside, CA
"Baby Boomer" Retirement Planner

Well Thomas Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor it isn't the ones that come and stay that amaze me, it is the ones the come here and then go back to whatever hell they left to visit PARADISE.

Bill Roberts

Aug 30, 2016 01:43 AM #3
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Thomas -- San Diego -- perhaps, the ultimate stay-cation place.   Nicely told.  

Aug 31, 2016 05:26 AM #4
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

It is a beautiful city.  When we visit we always make time for a few things that are "touristy" and we always enjoy a few places that are fabulous that someone in my family knows about and aren't crowded or expensive. Among my favorite touristy places is Old Town.  I love the candy store there and a little hole in the wall place has great churios.  Then there is a restuarant called Natti's at Ocean Beach that is always a must for us. 

Sep 03, 2016 04:40 AM #5
Mary Yonkers
Alan Kells School of Real Estate/Howard Hanna Real Estate - Erie, PA
Erie/PA Real Estate Instructor

Oh my, Oh dear! Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor we might just have to make a trip to your adopted city San Diego soon!!!  Been there a few times but not recently but the urge is getting stronger after reading your post. North Island, Coronado and Old Town are our favs.

Sep 25, 2016 10:33 AM #6
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Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor e-Pro, CRS, RCS-D, Vets

& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast
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