Day 65 – San Diego to Temecula & Balboa Park, Point Loma and Mission Beach

We were staying in Temecula for the night, a move prompted by the silly hotel prices in San Diego for the start of Comic Con. Temecula is only 60 miles north of San Diego, which is how we planned it so that we could spend the day in San Diego sightseeing before heading off to Temecula. Bearing all this in mind we didn’t start the day too late and plotted a route to see most of the things you are supposed to see in the city. We started off in Balboa Park where we first struggled to find parking and almost gave up – and how glad were we that we didn’t give up! The park is absolutely amazing and there is so much to see and do. We parked in a parking area near the zoo and walked around for a couple of hours, just taking in the sights. I walked around feeling like I was in southern Spain somewhere with the buildings and the gardens surrounding us. I saw some amazing orchids in the botanical garden as well as a variety of other interesting plants. Balboa Park is an absolute must do if you’re ever in San Diego!
From the park we drove to Point Loma which is on the tip of a peninsula and where you get views of the city as well as the Atlantic. This is also where they’ve put up a statue to Cabrillo who was the first European explorer to get to the Californian coast, even though nobody is sure exactly where he set foot in 1542. The views were good and it was bloody hot, though I suspect not as hot as it’ll be towards Nevada and Texas! Here we saw a massive military cemetery (Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery) with miles of the little white headstones (not crosses) that you tend to see in movies. We followed the cast road for a bit to Sunset Cliffs, which is quite nice, and then went to Mission Beach for a quick stop. Mission Beach also features a rollercoaster and fun park and the beach was VERY busy. We only stopped for some pictures before deciding to give La Jolla and Torrey Pines a miss and head to Temecula as time was running out.
It is probably just as well we left when we did as the 60 mile trip took us maybe two and a half hours due to traffic and/or accidents on the road. We got to Temecula predictably hungry and thirsty and set out to a bar I read about called the Hard Hat Sports Bar. We walked into the bar to order a drink and I immediately spotted that bar girl was only wearing lingerie, i.e. a bra and knickers basically, though it took Brian a bit longer to cotton on! It also appears they serve very large beers here – usually a large is about the same as a British pint but here it turned out to be a stein of beer that we could hardly lift! It was a nice and warm day so we sat outside and worked our way through our beer, before swiftly moving on! I don’t think the bar was a strip club, but the barmaids do apparently wear lingerie all the time, a bit strange if you ask me! We found another bar a bit further on (Uptown Tavern) where I had some fish tacos and chicken wings – it wasn’t the best bar but the food was actually pretty good and I think it was about the only other place within walking distance so it had to do! We went to bed early for an early start in the morning!

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