Aerial view of Coronado Bridge with vehicles, boats, and the San Diego skyline in the distance

Take a Scenic San Diego Drive to Days Inn

San Diego is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Between our miles of breathtaking coastline, loads of landmarks and charming seaside neighborhoods, there’s simply no shortage of picturesque destinations to experience. And the best way to take it all in? Hopping in your car, picking a direction, and striking out in search of adventure! The scenic San Diego drives we’ve highlighted here are an absolute feast for the senses. Here’s how to check them out for yourself.   


The 59-Mile Scenic Drive 

Shimmering coasts, sumptuous sunsets and lush landscapes abound along this route. It’s one of the most famous day trips in the city, since it allows you to experience the most magnificent views in San Diego. Regardless of whether you only have a day to drive through these destinations or a week to really take your time, you won’t want to miss out on these highlights. If you’re interested in taking the entire trip, here’s a good guide


Point Loma

This gorgeous area features a variety of unique sights, from beach vistas to city scenery. Heading to the very tip of Point Loma (the southwestern-most point of the continental U.S.) means you can watch the gray whale migration during the winter months. Make sure to include Harbor Island for incredible views of San Diego Bay, Shelter Island for the docked sport-fishing fleet in the marina, and the famous Cabrillo National Monument


Ocean Beach

Making your way north along the coast will land you in Ocean Beach. Along the way, you’ll pass the stunning Sunset Cliffs. If you have the time, make a pit stop to see them from up close. Once in Ocean Beach, walk the pier and enjoy a variety of activities, including fishing and birdwatching. If you’re passing through mid-week, don’t miss the Ocean Beach Farmers Market — it’s consistently rated as one of the best in the entire state. 


Mission Bay Park


Mission Bay is one of the city’s most picturesque areas — which is truly saying something given the abundance of natural beauty across San Diego. Here you’ll discover the Mission Bay Aquatic Park, which features 4,600 acres of water and shoreline. Locals know it as a one-stop shop for adventure on the water, so you’ll have the chance to spend a few hours enjoying aquatic activities including paddleboarding, waterskiing, and kayaking. 


Pacific Beach

This laid-back community is the epitome of SoCal culture, and the ultimate San Diego destination for surfing and sunbathing. In addition to fantastic shopping destinations, world-class dining and a lively social scene, visitors can enjoy impressively memorable ocean views. Crystal Pier and the surrounding area (above) are must-stops for fans of unique shopping, surf culture, and fishing. The people-watching is unbeatable, too. 


La Jolla

La Jolla is among the most vibrant communities in San Diego, bringing together a mix of fun local color and stunning coastal views. Any visit here will undoubtedly mean you’ll leave with treasured memories. While it can be hard to narrow down the top things to do in this area, you won’t want to miss Mount Soledad, the University of California San Diego campus, or La Jolla Cove. A family of playful seals also makes their home near a Children’s Pool in La Jolla, so be sure to bring your camera. 


Old Town 

Old Town is located on the site of the first European settlement in the state of California, dating back to the late 1700s. Today, Old Town is a fun and eclectic mix of fantastic restaurants, historical locations, park space, shopping, entertainment, and area tours. Presidio Park — where early missionaries established some of the country’s first churches — is a lush and gorgeous green space that’s the ideal spot for a family picnic.



Hillcrest is the center of the LGBTQIA+ community in San Diego and is absolutely brimming with incredible nightlife. If you want to dance, then all you need to do is open your ears and follow the beat. You’ll find a world-class farmers market here, as well as an unquestionably fashion-forward shopping scene. Thirsty? Pop into Hillcrest Brewing Company — “The First Gay Brewery in the World” — and hoist a frosty pint of craft beer. 



(Photo: @sugitadavid)

The Embarcadero is the perfect place to end your scenic tour of San Diego. As you pass through this nautical history hub, you’ll take in the large bay — filled with aircraft carriers, cruise ships, sailboats, and yachts. If you have time to stop and explore, pay a visit to the Maritime Museum of San Diego, the nearby Balboa Park, or make a pit stop at the idyllic beaches of Coronado Island


Make Days the First Stop on Your Sightseeing Trip

Your scenic San Diego road trip starts right here at Days Inn. We’re the ideal launchpad for your drive thanks to our competitive rates, exceptional amenities and guest-first service. When you’re ready to plan, take a look at our special offers (especially our “On the Road Again” Package, which includes nightly parking and a complimentary gas card), select your dates, and let the anticipation begin!