If you are a shopping fanatic, you know that San Diego is one of the best places in California to shop. While others may dream about the sunny skies, pristine beaches, and fun and exciting downtown district, you gravitate to the area’s large outdoor malls and endless options for shopping. However with so many shopping destinations to explore, how do you know where to start? Here are a few suggestions and some insider tips to navigating the malls in San Diego.
A great shopping mall and downtown attraction is Horton Plaza. Why visit Horton Plaza you ask? This multi level outdoor shopping mall offers a premier shopping experience unlike any other. While the mall includes your typical retailers and shops, you can also find a movie theater, venue for live plays and a comedy club.
Insider Tip: Horton Plaza has its own private parking lot. However, parking is only free for the first 3 hours if you spend $10 at one of the stores in the mall and get it validated on the way out.
After exploring Horton Plaza, step outside and check out the shopping in the popular downtown district, the Gaslamp Quarter. While many view the Gaslamp Quarter as a hub for entertainment and nightlife, there are many unique boutiques and shops that feature everything from jewelry to children’s clothing. Offering a true downtown shopping experience, visitors can easily spend the entire day walking up and down the 16 blocks of the Gaslamp Quarter. For more information about downtown shopping, click here.
Insider Tip: Because the downtown district is also home to the San Diego Convention Center and the Padres stadium, the area may be crowded and streets are known to close frequently for events throughout the year.
If you are staying at a cheap hotel in downtown San Diego, you can use your savings to shop at the nearby Fashion Valley Mall. Although still undergoing construction, the addition of new wicker seating areas, palm trees and an expansive outdoor food court have helped transform the mall into a tropical oasis. For the avid shopper, the far end of the mall has also become home to high end retailers including Louis Vuitton, Prada, Hermes, Jimmy Choo, and more.
Insider Tip: There are eight different parking lots along the perimeter of Fashion Valley. The lots in the back of the mall, between the anchor stores of Macy’s and Bloomingdales, offer the most parking options with a multi-story lot. If you do not want to drive, the bus and trolley both run directly to Fashion Valley.
Have any other tips for shopping in San Diego? Share them with us!