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Bordered by La Jolla to the north, Mission Beach and Mission Bay to the south, and the I-5 freeway to the east, Pacific Beach is a vibrant neighborhood with many diverse shops, eateries, and coffee shops, along with a thriving nightlife. Numerous hotels run from very affordable to very high-end, including the venerable Catamaran Hotel along the bay side. Running the length of “PB” is a pedestrian boardwalk along Ocean Front Walk/Ocean Boulevard that provides year-round activities for joggers, roller-skaters, bikers, shoppers, and photographers. Many restaurants near and on the boardwalk offer ocean-view dining.
Pacific Beach is bordered to the west by wide expanses of sandy beaches, popular with both surfers and swimmers. Crystal Pier is a public pier off the boardwalk popular for sight-seeing and fishing, and its hotel at the west end of Garnet Avenue offers cottages built right on the pier for a unique experience staying on the water.
Within Pacific Beach is Kate Sessions Park, a nearly 80-acre open space atop a hillside that affords panoramic views — some of the best in San Diego — of vast stretches of surrounding areas including the mountains to the east, Seaworld, downtown San Diego, the Coronado Bay Bridge, and beyond. The park includes multi-use baseball/soccer fields, play equipment, and picnic/BBQ facilities.
While Pacific Beach has had a reputation for being an area populated by younger people and college students, the increasing home values and rents have turned it into an area that also includes a significant population of older people, families, and professionals. The area includes a mix of single-family, multi-unit, beachfront, and hilltop view homes.
Pacific Beach public schools are part of the San Diego Unified School District, among them Mission Bay Senior High School and Pacific Beach Middle School.
The Pacific Beach area is conveniently located near the heart of San Diego and all its many sights, activities, industries, and facilities. It affords easy access to area hospitals, including UCSD Medical Center, Scripps Mercy, Kaiser Permanente, Alvarado, and Sharp Hospitals, among several other top-notch healthcare facilities. It’s also close to numerous military complexes throughout San Diego, the biotech industry (“Biotech Beach” in La Jolla/Del Mar), and technology companies in Sorrento Valley and North County. Minutes away are shopping malls such as Fashion Valley Mall, Horton Plaza, and University Towne Centre Mall, among others, as well as unique communities such as Little Italy, Hillcrest, Pacific Beach, Point Loma, Sunset Cliffs, Mission Hills, La Jolla, Ocean Beach, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Cardiff by the Sea, Coronado, North Park, South Park, and the Gaslamp District. Take the trolley to a Chargers football game at Qualcom Stadium in Mission Valley or a Padres baseball game at Petco Park in the East Village. If you’re a golfer, there are more golf courses in San Diego County than just about anywhere in the country. Likewise, enjoy a Harbor Cruise for a whale-watching expedition, charter a boat for some sports-fishing, or take advantage of the area’s many yatch clubs, boat slips, and waterfront parks. Additionally, check out adult and baby seals at the rookery at La Jolla Cove, or enjoy bay views and ocean views while strolling through Torrey Pines State Reserve. Water-ski, surf, wind-surf, kite-surf, parasail, or kayak in Mission Bay Park. Play beach volleyball near the Boardwalk, or enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling near Blacks Beach. Hike the mountains of Mission Trails Park, take a historical stroll through San Diego Old Town State Historic Park, or see live theater at one of the area’s many performance venues (including the first-class La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Repertory Theater, the Old Globe, and the historic Balboa Theatre). Or if it suits you, take a wine tour through some of the region’s many wineries, enjoy spectacular views from atop Mount Soledad, shop at Seaport Village’s numerous retail stores, or take a tour of the Naval aircraft carrier USS Midway. And don’t forget San Diego’s premier gem, Balboa Park, which is home to art galleries, museums, botanical gardens, the Spreckles Organ Pavilion, and of course, the world-famous San Diego Zoo. Everything is within easy reach from Pacific Beach!
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