On our San Diego Gaslamp Tour, you’ll hear the history behind the Gaslamp District and how it grew from a struggling settlement to the city’s red light district and finally, to the epicenter of downtown San Diego.
You’ll have the chance to marvel at the early architecture of the Gaslamp, and imagine what San Diego looked like in its infancy.
You’ll also shoot some whiskey at one of the oldest bars in San Diego– Old West lawman Wyatt Earp's old watering hole– that still has the original hand carved wooden bar where he once enjoyed libations.
Our tour wouldn’t be complete without uncovering the seedier stories of the Gaslamp, and the tales of eerie ghosts that reportedly plague some of the historic buildings, from ghosts dressed in period clothing in the Gaslamp’s oldest building to a room in the Horton Hotel that has enthralled ghosthunters from all over the world.
Balboa Park Tour
Our Balboa Park Tour will take you through the park’s unmissable highlights, from its most-photographed spots to some of the historic plants and buildings that have been here since the garden’s inception like original Mexican palms and the giant fig tree that is one of the biggest in California.
Balboa Park is overwhelmingly large and you can take advantage of having an expert guide to show you the most iconic spots in the park, like the Bea Evenson Fountain and the California Tower, as well as hidden gems along the way.
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San Diego History
San Diego is now commonly known as the “birthplace of California,” as it was the first location visited and settled by Europeans on the West Coast. The land that is now a premier travel destination was home to the Kumeyaay people for thousands of years. In 1542, Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo claimed the area’s bay for Spain, planting the roots of what would become the settlement of Alta California some 200 years later.
Birthplace of California
In 1769, Spain began building a chain of missions across California, the first of which was established by Father Junipero Serra on a hillside overlooking present-day San Diego. By the 1820s, Mexico had become independent of Spain, and a small Mexican community of adobe structures formed at the base of the hill eventually named El Pueblo de San Diego.
Following the Mexican-American War in 1848, California became part of the United States and was admitted to the union as a state in 1850. The settlement would become Old Town San Diego, maintaining its Spanish and Mexican influence to this day.
San Diego grew slowly during the mid-1800s, even with admirable efforts by influential resident William Heath Davis, who was enchanted by the city and determined to help build it. He continued to plan and build streets and structures until a series of floods and a fire shattered his dream and he ran out of money.
Although several thousand men stopped briefly in San Diego during the San Francisco gold rush, few stayed, and the small settlement seemed doomed to remain an isolated village forever.
As the oldest town in California, San Diego is a seaside gem situated near the Mexican border.
Revered for its Mediterranean climate and abundance of sunshine, San Diego is blessed with 70 miles of coastline dotted with world-class beaches, fully earning its nickname of “America’s finest city”.
Home to a proud military community, a youthful population (half of San Diego’s population is under 35), and a thriving cultural scene, San Diego is beloved for its fresh fish tacos, white-sand beaches, and friendly community.
San Diego will charm you with its historic neighborhoods, each with a personality all its own, from the industrial ambiance of the East Village to the lively pull of Seaport Village.
As the hub of nightlife in San Diego, the Gaslamp Quarter is the place to go after dark. In the light of day, bask in the atmosphere of its Victorian buildings filled with entertainment venues, art galleries, and buzzy restaurants.
Situated along the picturesque bay, Seaport Village is a lively waterfront area lined with interesting shops, eclectic street performances, and a traditional carousel for kids. Snack on seaside favorites like ice cream and soft pretzels while shopping for unique memorabilia from surf and resort wear options to a store dedicated to hot sauce and fiery foods.
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