1. Stroll through the historic Gaslamp Quarter and view the renovated turn-of-the-century Victorian architecture, home to boutiques, art galleries and specialty shops. Historic buildings have been relocated to Gaslamp from other parts of the San Diego, their nineteenth century architecture restored to its former glory. Restaurants, shops and clubs occupy former brothels and saloons. The nightlife is throbbing and vibrant 365 days a year. The Quarter is home to many events and festivals, including San Diego's Mardi Gras, Taste of Gaslamp and the city's St. Patrick's Day events ensuring that the Gaslamp Quarter will remain one of San Diego's favorite travel destinations.
2. Enjoy a free organ concert at 2 p.m. on Sundays at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion in lovely Balboa Park. The Spreckels brothers donated this - one of the world's largest outdoor pipe organs - to the City of San Diego for the Panama-California Exposition way back in 1914. The organ has more than 4000 pipes in length from the size of your finger to 32 feet. At the concerts you will hear world-famous organists play traditional favorites, waltzes and show tunes on enormous 32-foot pipes.
3. Look at Jupiter's moons through a telescope in Balboa Park as the San Diego Astronomy Association sets up many of their big telescopes by the fountain in front of the Reuben Fleet Science Center. Because there are several amateur astronomy groups and professional observatories in San Diego, this is a great opportunity for you to explore the cosmos. Held each month on the first Wednesday after dark, you'll be able to see the rings of Saturn, the planet Neptune and the craters on the moon - and understand why San Diegans consider Balboa Park the Smithsonian of the West.
4. See things you never saw before at The Museum of Contemporary Art in LaJolla featuring an enormous collection of 4,000 works created after 1950. Here you'll find exhibits of all media and genres: painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography, video and film. Designed in 1916 by world-famous Irving Gill and originally the home of distinguished philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps, the 60,000 square-foot Museum will thrill you with its breathtaking coastal views.
5. Explore the tide pools just north of Swami's Beach in Encinitas when the tide is low and see things most people never see: Hairy hermit crabs, willowy sea anemones, yawning barnacles, and perhaps even a two-spot octopus are a few of the many species that might be discovered in the nooks and crannies of tide pools. Low tides during convenient daylight hours are most common in the winter during full and new moons. San Diego travel tip: check the newspaper tide tables.
6. The Beach. We've got 70 miles of coastline here in San Diego - dozens of sun-worshiping possibilities. All San Diego beaches are free - perfect for reading that mystery novel, swimming, watching world-class surfers, people watching or just chilling.
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