What is South Bay, San Diego? Where is at? What can you do there? Well, we’re here to help answer all those questions by telling you at least ten things you can do in South Bay, San Diego! San Diego’s South Bay locale is a big area, but ranging from south of Downtown to the San Ysidro International Port of Entry, so what we list here is far from everything this place has to offer!
1. South Bay Drive-In Theatre
The South Bay Drive-In Theatre is located in South San Diego, an area so far south it borders Mexico! How ironic then, to have our first spot on this list be a staple iconography of old-fashioned, pure Americana! Yet, drive-ins are a rarity in the United States these days. With somewhere around three hundred left in the entire country, only two reside in the greater San Diego county.
Folks, if you’re considering any these drive-ins, have it be South Bay San Diego’s. Having multiple screens at its disposal, this drive-in can offer a high-quality cinematic experience with its state-of-the-art projectors, varying food selection, and spacious parking lot.
2. North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre
The Credit Union Amphitheatre is the premier venue for every major musician, artist, and talent that arrives to perform in San Diego’s South Bay. Hosting large concerts for bands such as Green Day or performing singers like Ariana Grande, this Amphitheatre boasts spacious design-work.
Come to a concert at Chula Vista’s Credit Union Amphitheatre and see what all the hubbub is about!
3. Border Field State Park
A beachfront park as well as a nature reserve, the Borderfield State Park is a crossroads coastal habitat directly north of the United States –Mexico border. The park is located in Imperial Beach and is the closest an American individual can get to the border wall without crossing it.
Within Border Field is Friendship Park, a smaller park that allows visitors to get up close with the border fence! However, this access is only limited to weekends, as every other day of the week is restricted. But, if you’re able to come to Friendship Park, it is a great experience that deepens one’s perspective of national and ethnic identity.
4. Downtown Chula Vista
If the aesthetics and cultural stylings of Chula Vista city were condensed into a single area, it would be Downtown Chula Vista. A hub for events and social gatherings, Downtown Chula Vista has many bars and marketplaces for a nice night out. It’s no Downtown San Diego, though, but it still offers plenty to entertain the night.
Downtown Chula Vista is also known to host its annual Christmas Parade, so, hopefully, you’re in the area around that time of year to see it!
5. Otay Ranch Town Center
Structures and complexes in Southern California never underappreciate the warm climate they’re given and it’s places like Otay Ranch Town Center that know how to utilize it! This outdoor mall isn’t located in a building, but rather basks in the San Diego weather, giving off a wide-sprawling look that’s host to many stores and restaurants. Their store options vary enough to satisfy any customer!
Aquatica opens seasonally in San Diego, from May until September, but when it does, it’s a sure-fire way to kill off the summer heat in the most entertaining ways possible.
Theme parks are hard to come by in small communities like South Bay San Diego, making Aquatica a valuable tourist attraction and staple location. Whether it’s relaxing in its many pools or riding its many rollercoasters, Aquatica has something for everyone.
7. Imperial Beach Pier
As the only beach in South Bay San Diego, Imperial Beach’s coast offers a serene view of the Pacific Ocean. Stroll along the shores, build sandcastles, or take photo ops with your friends! Appreciate structures like Surfhenge or visit Camp Surf!
Its featured attraction is the beachfront wooden pier, extending from the shoreline and ending right above the sea. If you’re more inclined to just be near the beach and not actually go in it, this pier will still give you the oceanic atmosphere you’re looking for.
8. Baja Oyster and Sushi Bar
Being close to the Mexican border has its perks, and food variety is definitely among them! Located in South San Diego is Baja Oyster and Sushi Bar, a bustling and well-respected restaurant specializing in Mexican seafood and sushi! This restaurant brings home the taste of Baja California delicacy that’s hard to come by north of the border.
This eatery is known to have amazing mariscos and delicious micheladas. Its sushi offerings are flavorful and, as a bar, it offers a great variety of drinks. If you’re in the area and craving some beer and sushi, consider this hidden gem!
9. National City Depot
National City houses a historic station-museum called the National City Depot. A little known fact to even the locals in the South Bay San Diego area, this station was the first operation of railroad transcontinental travel in the San Diego county. While most other rail stations have been dismantled, the National City Depot still stands to serve as a historical record and museum to educate new generations.
10. Las Americas Premium Outlet
This outlet is famous amongst migrants and locals due to its position as a mall right in front of the international San Ysidro border. Like the Otay Ranch Town Center, Las Americas is an outdoor mall that relies on amazing San Diego weather to keep its attractive, unique look. Las Americas is a crossroads of sorts, with many Mexican tourists entering the United States just to shop here. As a result, it is a much-needed place of diversity and cooperation between the U.S. and Mexico.