San Diego, CA

San Diego Sunsets


I am what my boyfriend like to call a "coastal elite", which is basically his way of saying I am spoiled to have grown up close to the ocean. It is kind of true though because I truly cannot imagine myself ever living somewhere more than 30 minutes from the beach. It is the place I go to escape, to reset, and to smile. I love the salty air, the sound of the waves crashing, and watching the vast horizon. And there is no better time to enjoy it on the West Coast than sunset hour.

It is the show that waits for no one! On any given night in San Diego, you will find the beaches packed with locals and tourist, there to watch the sky light up and the sun sink down. Looking out over the water, surfers sit facing the horizon, watching the show too. Parks are filled with evening picnics, whether it be friends catching up or a casual date night. All of these things just add to the ambiance that is a Southern California sunset.

Having lived in San Diego for almost eight years now (wow that is weird to say!) I have seen my fair share of sunsets and I have scoped out the best spots. Do a quick google search for 'places to watch sunset in San Diego' and you will get all the tourists favorites including Sunset Cliffs in Ocean Beach, the boardwalk at Mission Beach, Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach, Hotel Del Coronado, and Mt. Soledad. While these are all great options, they are also usually very busy and crowded options, often with limited parking. Granted once you do park and find a spot you are in for a great show regardless of where you are.

I am here though to share my insider knowledge on sunsets and my favorite places I have found over the years here. So here you go, don't tell!

Windansea Beach! Now this beach 3 years ago used to be virtually unknown to anyone besides local surfers and the neighbors, however I have noticed in the past year or so this place has gotten much busier! Still, it is one of my favorite spots tucked in a quiet neighborhood, this tiny beach has perfect views west. With both sand and rocks to sit on depending on the tide, as well as a picturesque tiki shack, it is a great place to bring a picnic. It also has a sidewalk that goes about a quarter mile for a nice short walk with your dog. This beach is also one of my favorites to come to during the day because it is quieter and smaller. Parking is fairly easy in the neighborhood and I believe it is dog friendly, or at least the people here don't seem to mind if dogs are off leash.

Scripps Coastal Reserve Biodiversity Trail. This is the perfect spot if you are looking to get in a nice nature walk as the sun sinks down. It is a 0.5 mile loop up on the cliffs above Scripps beach. A friend took me here once and I never would have guessed the views that come from the trail! There are also views across a canyon to some stunning homes who enjoy the same sunset view from their multimillion-dollar mansions that you are getting from this free trail. Parking again is just in the neighborhood which I recommend getting there early or your short walk could easily double or triple in distance. Still though, not bad.

Law Street Beach and Park. This is a Pacific Beach staple, anyone who lives here know. But for a very good reason. You have the beach, you have the surf, and you have a grassy park. If I surfed this would be where I would go to catch a wave at sunset. Personally though, I stick to the park. It is always full of PB locals enjoying their Board & Brew sandwiches and soaking up the last few minutes of sunshine. Parking here is the one downside, it sucks, so definitely plan ahead and get here early.

Calumet Park. This park is in my favorite San Diego neighborhood, Birdrock. It is pretty small and on nights when the surf is good it can get a little busy, but the views are perfect. Plus, there is grass for sitting or you can carefully walk down the sandy hill behind the surfers and sit on the rocks when the tide is low. Another reason I love this spot it the neighborhood walking aspect of it. I always take a trip north on the street all the way down to a lookout at La Jolla Hermosa Park. There are a few little lookouts on your way there including steps down to the famous, Bird Rock.

Mr. A’s. Okay this last one is a little different because it is not a beachfront spot. It does, however, include cocktails! Mr. A’s located in Banker’s Hill is a San Diego classic. This rooftop restaurant offers stunning views in all directions and the perfect sunset seats while watching the planes fly in. It may be the priciest spot of all these options but it worth it, believe me. And, if you aren’t looking to spend too much on dinner you can always enjoy a happy hour drink and then head down to Little Italy for a slice.

In my opinion, sunset hour is the best time of the day and so often we get stunning shows. I try to get out an catch a sunset at least once a week and every time I do I appreciate the simpleness of this timeless show. Each one if different, and each one is memorable. So whether you are visiting San Diego for a weekend getaway or you’ve lived here all your life, these are spots you must see!

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Hi friends! My name is Rhylae and I am a fashion and lifestyle blogger based in San Diego, CA! I spend my days like most of you, working a full time job, but in my spare time I run a fashion blog, manage a social media agency, and run a home decor shop! For me this all started from a passion for writing. I write about the things I love, whether that be my favorite yoga clothing brands, to the best place to catch a sunset, to my new favorite healthy-ish recipe! I share tips on fashion, travel, home decor, and so much more. For more, check out my blog or head to my social media channels on Instagram and Youtube @smileyrhylae!

San Diego, CA

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