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San Diego coastal gem

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Explore the Coast

San Diego Pier

Explore the small towns surrounding San Diego for a taste of the city's soul.

The stereotypes of San Diego are true. It has a darn nice zoo. The place is so laid back that the mascot for the baseball team is a free swingin’ friar. The weather? It is, in fact, achingly beautiful, day after day of blue skies and gentle ocean breezes. But there is more to this city than postcard images and fun, fun in the summertime. Beyond the acrobatic dolphins at SeaWorld, there is a city full of history and surprises, a special world of colorful beach communities and memorable hangouts.

Head north to explore more of the beach communities that help give San Diego its soul. Stop in La Jolla, one of the area’s tiniest coastal communities. From the cliffs of La Jolla Cove, watch the seals play on the rocks below. Have lunch on the ocean terrace of La Valencia Hotel.

Up the coast, watch hang gliders jumping off the cliffs at  Torrey Pines Glider Port. Resist the urge to make like Icarus. A little farther up the road, Torrey Pines State Reserveis a great place for a quiet, off-the-beaten-path hike. The windswept cliffs are one of only two places in the U.S. where the rugged Torrey pine tree grows naturally (the other is Santa Rosa Island, off the coast 170 miles to the north). Enjoy the breathtaking sunset at this memorable spot.

This article has been adapted from the original, which was published by MSP Communications.

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