San Diego is, as cities go, a very pleasant place. A subtropical desert, it has a mild climate. Its role as home to one of the world's major naval bases underpins its economy. Wandering its streets, one finds almost every kind of ethnic food imaginable. A casual joie de vivre is seen at sidewalk cafes and farmers' markets all over town.
Since moving here in late September, Jane and I have enjoyed exploring our new home. We're renting an apartment in Little Italy, home to countless restaurants (not all of them Italian) and bars. Our building even has a hidden speakeasy-style tiki bar. If you don't know about it, you'll never find it. We've been to the Old Globe for a show, to Coronado Island via ferry, to the beach and pier at Ocean Beach, and we've taken the city trolley to the Mexican border and walked into Tijuana for lunch. San Diego has many attractions that we've yet to visit, including its famous zoo. I'm sure I'll be doing more posts on this city.
For this post, though, the focus is on the waterfront, specifically from the Hilton Hotel near the Petco baseball park north to the Coast Guard station near the airport. One can stroll the entire way along the water, ogling billionaires' yachts and fishing boats from the Embarcadero. Here are some snapshots from my almost daily walks.
|The aircraft carrier Midway is a major attraction. I'm told that it gets more visitors a year than the Intrepid|
in New York. It sits near the Broadway Pier.
|A ferry or excusion boat passes the Midway as it leaves the Embarcadero.|
|Carnitas, a bar and snack shop near the Midway, is one of many temptations along the Embarcadero.|
|The bar is outdoors at Carnitas. With this climate, one hardly needs|
walls or a roof.
|The Star of India is one of several tallships that can be toured.|
|A tallship's bronze figurehead. The ship itself is in the photo below.|
|The steamship Berkeley awaits visitors rather than passengers.|
|Boats of all sizes are available for private cruises and parties.|
|Bird of paradise flowers, native of southern Africa,|
are seen in sidewalk plantings, roadway median gardens
and along the waterfront.
|The San Diego airport is literally within walking distance for many people. Airplanes appear to dodge|
buildings and palm trees for takeoff and landings. I took this photo from the Embarcadero
near the Coast Guard station.
|This helicopter hangar marks the northern end of my walks|
along the waterfront, though sidewalks continue
out toward Point Loma.
|Visitors and locals take to the waterfront. In the background is a sail on the Star of India.|
|Unlike the Northeast, where sailing is mostly a summer|
activity, San Diego Bay sees boats like these
almost every day.
|A bronze Bob Hope entertains bronze American forces in this World War II installation. A recording|
of Hope speaking to troops during WWII plays continuously.
|Serious-looking fishing boats have berths along the Embarcadero.|
|Pedicabs zip up and down the Embarcadero as well as along|
some downtown streets. Most carry advertisements.
|Many people along the waterfront become entranced when this little boat appears. It carries a pilot|
and one passenger as it dives beneath the water and pops up at sharp angles.
|Kites fly in one of the many open spaces along the waterfront. In|
the background is the bridge to Coronado Island.
|Private boats of all sizes are berthed at marinas along|
|This is the Vava II, a 97-meter super yacht owned by the Swiss billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli. Its Airbus helicopter|
reportedly cost more than $8 million, and the boat itself cost about $150 million. It's registered in the
Cayman Islands, of course.
|This ship is one of many that puts into the naval base on|
Coronado Island for refueling, restocking and repairs.