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Visit for Comic-Con...Stay for the City!

America's Finest City has Everything to Offer the Comic-Con Tourist!

With the availability of passes becoming a shot in the dark many tourist are finding extra time on their hands during the momentous week. I often come across posts on chat boards and private groups where attendees are asking what there is to do in San Diego if you find yourself without a pass. Never fear! There are so many amazing opportunities in the city you will not be disappointed.

San Diego Attractions

Lets start with some San Diego gems:

Photo by Elizabeth Bickford

San Diego Zoo or San Diego Safari Park - these sister locations have achieved world famous status for numerous reasons. The parks are massive, the enclosures are amazing, and the locations cannot be beat! I recommend checking out the new Outback exhibit at the Safari Park - the Kangaroos share the enclosure with you but watch out...Kangaroos have the right of way!

Sea World San Diego - this particular location is not only a great way to spend your afternoon but by visiting their park you support endless marine life rescues in San Diego County. It's rare to not see or hear about a Sea World assisted animal rescue while you are in this town and for that I recommend your support - because I'm not sure who else we would call if there was a whale, sea lion, or seal that needed help! Now is also a great time to stop in and check out their new Electric Eel roller coaster, the tallest on the San Diego!

Photo by Elizabeth Bickford

Balboa Park - Don't have a pass for Comic-Con but still need your fix on super hero culture, Balboa Park and their many museums are sure to help! The Fleet Science Center often houses Comic-Con themed nights and never disappoints with classic memorabilia on how science, science-fiction, and super heroes go hand in hand.

Birch Aquarium - The aquarium is stepping up to the battle field for your CCI tourist money with a new and interesting exhibit called Oddities: Hidden Heroes of the Scripps Collection. Here you will find an exhibit of deep sea creatures preserved for all time - many looking like something straight out of a comic book or graphic novel! Take some time to explore the tide pools here or take a whale watching tour! Watch out YouTube video exploring the property: The Bic Shots

La Jolla Shores - this is one of the most clean and versatile beaches in San Diego. I love sitting on the sand and taking in the sun here but I have also been here to Kayak, Body Surf, and Swim with Leopard Sharks. Leopard Sharks are very harmless as they are bottom feeding sharks and do not bite, however, it sounds pretty cool! I recommend checking out Everyday California for unique experiences!

Wonderspaces - This art installation is an immersive experience of light, sound, and touch. This limited engagement is available this summer and luckily it is in town during Comic-con. Be sure to order your tickets in advance as times are selling out quickly! Head straight to the VR sign up and get your chance to see something amazing!

For more activities in San Diego check out my post on Trekaroo.

San Diego Dining

The food scene is extremely competitive is San Diego - fine dining in a casual setting is all the rage. No need to remove your Cos-Play to dine around town we welcome and embrace all things comic-con!

Searsuckers- Every year I treat myself to a meal here at Comic-Con. I love the witty named drinks and amazing small bites! This restaurant focuses on the flavors and not on the pomp - sneak in for an early dinner to avoid the rush! I highly recommend the braised beef and always share a side of brussels!

Photo by Elizabeth Bickford

Cloak and Petal - The newest sushi fusion bar is all the rage! The impressive cherry blossom tree is the central focus for the bar. The pop art on the wall creates a cultural fusion of traditional Japan meets urban life. The drinks are delicious and the food is too good to pass. I recommend hopping in an Uber or grabbing a bike to trek over to Little Italy to check them out.

Photo by Elizabeth Bickford

Born and Raised - This is the restaurant that I compare all other steakhouses to! Since my first visit I have not stopped thinking about the delicious end cut of prime rib and their buttery smooth potatoes! I highly recommend a reservation or try to stop by and go to the top deck bar - the views are amazing!

Fireside by the Patio - The menu here is delicious and I have never had an item that I did not enjoy! I recommend spending a weekend morning here - the brunch buffet is a great start to a day! The cheesy grits are one of my favorite items. I recommend pairing brunch with a mimosa flight or a deluxe Bloody Marry!

For more ideas on dining check out my Kid-Friendly post on Gaslamp Dining!

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