The Best of Pacific Beach San Diego

It’s often been said that San Diego isn’t just one city, but a collection of neighborhoods. The city encompasses more than 100 unique areas, each with its own special vibe and personality. And while there are countless reasons to visit all of them, we’re particularly partial to our own neighborhood of Pacific Beach. PB is one of the most vibrant, eclectic, and fun to visit areas in San Diego, and we are so grateful to call this beach community home. So if you’re looking for some great nearby places to go during your visit, here are our picks for the best things to see and do here in Pacific Beach San Diego.

Terrace Café (Here at Pacific Terrace Hotel)

Get your day started right, right here at Pacific Terrace. Our very own Chef Michael at the on-site Terrace Café is on hand every morning to create our signature à-la carte breakfast plates. That not only includes a full range of sunrise favorites like our Lemon Ricotta Pancakes or Mediterranean Omelette, but also fresh-brewed (and award-winning) espresso drinks from Mostra Coffee. There’s simply no better way to wake up than sipping and savoring the good life while overlooking the ocean.

Chef holding breakfast plates with ocean behind him

The Duck Dive (0.2 miles from the hotel)

Pacific Terrace has long enjoyed a close relationship with our good friends at The Duck Dive. Not only is their laid-back, surf-centric lounge a great place to kick back and enjoy a bite or a drink just steps from the water, but they’re located within a two-minute walk of our front door as well. Looking for a little refreshment? Stop in and visit our neighbors next visit!

4650 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA. 92109

Plate of shrimp tacos on a wooden table with a wooden cocktail glass
Photo credit: @goodeatswithamanda

San Diego Surf School (0.4 miles away)

Ever had the desire to learn how to shoot the curl with the West Coast’s best wave riders? There’s no greater place to get the hang of hanging ten than at the San Diego Surf School. Their dedicated instructors excel at teaching surf students from complete novices all the way up to intermediate and even experienced riders the tips, tricks, and techniques the pros know. So even if you’ve never put on a wetsuit, they can get you surfing in no time.

4850 Cass St. San Diego, CA 92109

San Diego Surf School
Photo credit: @sandiegosurfschool

Pangaea Outpost (0.5 miles away)

If you’re on the hunt for a distinctly SoCal shopping experience, you’d be hard-pressed to do better than at this multi-vendor bazaar-style destination. Small business owners, makers, artisans, and importers from all over the globe share this eclectic space, meaning you’ll find original arts and crafts, jewelry, toys, handmade clothes, and home décor all under one roof. Stop in, go on a treasure hunt, and support some local creators.  

909 Garnet Avenue, San Diego CA 92109

Candle Lit on table
Photo credit: @pangaeaoutpost

Quicksand Escape Games (0.6 miles)

Quicksand Escape Games offers a series of scenarios certain to captivate both seasoned escape room enthusiasts and newcomers alike. Each is brimming with intricate puzzles, compelling narratives, and brain-breaking mysteries. Whether visiting with a group of friends or team-building with co-workers, these cerebral challenges encourage collaboration, creativity, and quick thinking. If you’re looking for a fun and unique experience during your next visit, challenge yourself at Quicksand Escape Games, just blocks from our hotel!

escape Room group photo

Photo Credit: @quicksand_escape_games)

Mission and Garnet Food Hall (0.3 miles)

Newly opened in 2023, Mission and Garnet consists of 6 restaurants within one food hall, located right across from the beach and boardwalk. This popular locale features early morning to late-night dining options for those early risers and after-hours bar crowds. Enjoy a range of grab and go meals, or patio dining options such as breakfast burritos, deli sandwiches, Greek kabobs and more!

4505 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109

Food Hall

Photo: @mission_garnet 

mimi & red boutique (0.7 miles away)

There’s just no mistaking that signature Southern California style — it’s comfy, it’s beautiful, and it’s always in style. The fashion-forward goods at mimi & red embody this aesthetic, offering shoppers sleek, chic, and unique items in every apparel category. So if you’re in the market for a fun romper, breezy blouse, or the perfect accessory to complete your ensemble, drop by and pay them a visit. You’ll be glad you did.

5005 Cass St, San Diego, CA 92109

Clothes on a mannequin
Photo credit: @shopmimiandred

The Fishery (0.7 miles away)

The Fishery is one of the most unique seafood stops in the city. In addition to the renowned open-kitchen restaurant, The Fishery also maintains a well-stocked seafood market right on site — so you can take home the same just-caught items you’ll find on the menu. Speaking of the menu, Chef Mike Reidy allows it to evolve with the seasons, ensuring that every ingredient is in its prime peak of flavor and freshness.

5040 Cass St, San Diego, CA 92109

Seafood tower
Photo credit: @sdthefishery

Kate Sessions Neighborhood Park

The natural beauty and community spirit of this park (named after the renowned horticulturist Kate Sessions) offers panoramic views of the coastal city skyline and the Pacific Ocean — creating a serene backdrop for relaxation and reflection. The park’s lush greenery, punctuated by mature trees, colorful floral displays, and meandering pathways, invites outdoor activities for all ages. Beyond its scenic charm, Kate Sessions Park serves as a hub for community gatherings, featuring well-maintained playgrounds, sports courts, and open spaces perfect for an afternoon spent picnicking. Insider tip* this location is a premier spot to watch the 4th of July fireworks, just make sure to arrive EARLY to grab a spot for the day!

Kate Sessions Park

Local Events To Add To Your 2024 Calendar

In addition to great places to go, 2024 is also shaping up to be a year of amazing events in the Pacific Beach area. Here are just a few exciting things to look forward to this year: 

  • San Diego Restaurant Week: An 8-day city-wide celebration of all things food. Eateries all over the city (including many here in PB) will have promotions, discounts, events, and special menu items this March. Stay tuned as specials get announced!
  • San Diego Beach & Bay Half Marathon: This 13.1-mile run features bayside views, a beer garden and finisher medals this April. Register early to participate! 
  • Pacific Beachfest: This free, family friendly all-day October festival is located in the heart of our beach town.  Visitors can look forward to kid’s activities, a 5K fun run beach volleyball tournament, live music and more!

Beachfest on the beach

Plan Your Pacific Beach Visit

Ready to check out these PB hot spots for yourself? You can always view more of our favorite dining, activity and shopping recommendations at our Area Guide here.  When you’re ready to plan your 2024 visit, head over to our SPECIAL OFFERS page and book the Pacific Terrace package or offer that’s perfect for you! We hope to see you in the new year!