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The seaside community of Point Loma is a hilly peninsula that’s historically noted for being the landing spot of the first European explorers to come ashore in present-day California, or “where California began.” The area is bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west and south, San Diego Bay and Old Town to the east, and the San Diego River to the north.
Cabrillo National Monument, a prominent federal park at the southern tip of the peninsula, commemorates Portuguese navigator Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, who discovered that San Diego Bay was “a very good enclosed port.” Along with numerous cliffside hiking trails, shoreline tidal pools, and a comprehensive visitor center, the monument is also home to one of San Diego’s best known landmarks, the Old Point Loma lighthouse perched atop the park’s southern point and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Point Loma houses several major military installations that employ roughly 50,000 military personnel and civilians. Among them are Naval Base Point Loma, the Navy’s SPAWAR program, the Marine Corps’ Recruit Training Depot, Submarine Squadron 11, and the Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Command. Point Loma is also home to Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery, which overlooks San Diego Bay. An important area serving the U.S. Pacific Fleet, Point Loma is home to many retired and active-duty military personnel.
Formerly the Naval Training Center San Diego, which served as a basic training facility for new Navy recruits for more than 70 years, Liberty Station has been redeveloped into a 361-acre mixed-use facility that includes residential, office, retail, educational, civic, arts, and cultural complexes. It also offers a 9-hole golf course, a 46-acre waterfront park, and a 100-acre historic district listed with the National Register of Historic Places. Liberty Station has proven to be an exciting and popular addition that enhances the urban and civic nature of Point Loma and draws many to its events, restaurants, shops, and open spaces.
Among Point Loma’s several educational facilities are the public Point Loma High School, two middle schools, and seven elementary schools. The desirable “High Tech High” is a public charter school campus in Liberty Station that encompasses three high schools, two middle schools, and one elementary school. Also in the area are a K–12 religious school, a religious elementary/middle school, and a private elementary/middle school. As for post-secondary education, there is Point Loma Nazarene University, a Christian liberal arts college with an ocean-view campus, and a branch campus of the San Diego Community College District.
Point Loma 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, Sunset Cliffs, Mission Hills, La Jolla, Ocean Beach, Mission 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 Point Loma!
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