5 Most Photo-Worthy Spots Near Flora
Flora is only a hop and a skip away from some of the most appealing landscapes in the city. Here, we share five of the most photogenic off-site locations to strike a pose in front of.
How do they make the most of their stay in San Diego? Where do they serve the best tacos? On top of an already-busy schedule and several last-minute wedding matters to attend to, the last thing you want is to take on the role of a tour guide. To field those questions, you’ll need a well-curated list of San Diego’s top attractions and destinations on hand and ready to go. So, here is a best-of itinerary of what to see and do and where to eat and drink – all within close distance from Flora.
No trip to San Diego is complete without a walk through Balboa Park – a sprawling 1,200-acre historical and cultural oasis. A total of 17 museums call this urban park home, and every one of them is worthy of a tour. A fan of Comic-Con? There’s a museum dedicated to the pop culture event. Interested in science? Explore the over-100 exhibits on display at the Fleet Science Center. Fond of the old masters? Peruse canvases by renowned Spanish and Italian painters at The San Diego Museum of Art. But there’s also so much more to unfurl here; a visit to the Balboa Park will keep visitors entertained all day long.
There’s a reason why the San Diego Zoo is on every San Diego must-visit list. It’s simply one of the most prominent and highly rated zoos in the country. If you’re already planning a trip to Balboa Park, then the San Diego Zoo isn’t too far of a jaunt. Situated along the park’s northern outskirts and taking up almost 100 acres, this wildlife park is home to more than 12,000 creatures – so there’s a lot to see. To cover the most ground, visitors can opt for the 35-minute guided bus tour (especially those with tots in tow), but exploring the zoo on foot is also a great way to experience it.
Spanning about 16 blocks, the Gaslamp Quarter is an enclave of San Diego blossoming with craft-cocktail bars, a tally of brilliant restaurants, glossy stores and so much more. Luckily, Flora is right there, smack-dab in the middle of everything. Here, your guests can while away the hours popping in and out of stores, ogling the historic architecture that defines this corner of the city – one of the oldest neighborhoods in San Diego – and settling empty stomachs with any kind of noshes imaginable.
One of the biggest perks of staying in close proximity to the ocean is the ability to view some stunning coastlines. Plenty of seaside towns are scattered along the shores (Coronado, Encinitas and La Jolla, to name a few), so your guests will never run out of beachy lands to escape to – if that’s what’s on their minds. The Sunset Cliffs Natural Park has plenty of expansive, breathtaking views on offer, particularly for sunset-chasers. Plus, visitors can also climb down a staircase and find themselves right there by the water.
Tucked away on a quiet street, away from the hustle and bustle of the city, this 11-year-old restaurant has all the trappings of a quaint neighborhood osteria. Think: black-and-white striped awning, string lights, and an unmatched, cozy ambiance. Not to mention, some incredible, stand-up staples of Italian cuisine. The pizza here is the main attraction – a perfectly charred and blistered crust, straight out of a gold-tiled, wood-fired oven. But other dishes are worthy of exploration, too: a creamy cacio e pepe and carbonara, lasagna bolognese and even a vegan penne ai funghi. And of course, there’s a well-honed wine menu to wash it all down with.
There are breweries and beer gardens – and then there’s Stone Brewing World Bistro and Garden. It won’t take you long after setting foot here to realize this is no ordinary establishment. For starters, it’s huge. Case in point: Housed in a former U.S. Navy mess hall, the brewery boasts a bocce ball court, an outdoor cinema space and a spacious garden. Beer enthusiasts – particularly those fond of hoppy beer styles – will enjoy Stone Brewing’s IPA offerings, which is what it’s known for. You’ll also find a generous food menu: a hefty Bavarian pretzel, salt and lime lager onion rings and a host of tacos and burgers to choose from.
Rooted in Sicilian cuisine, this Little Italy gem isn’t your typical Italian establishment. Barbusa is a modern concept, complete with pop art, quirky chandeliers and a dedicated crudo bar – a place that encourages what’s called “social dining.” This means the atmosphere is always lively, and the food just as thrilling. The menu enfolds everything from lollipop chops (blackened lamb with gorgonzola) and Sicilian meatballs to oxtail risotto and a myriad of other delectable pasta dishes. If you’re in the mood for pie, you’ll find it here, too – plus a healthy selection of libations you’ll want to linger over.