San Diego is a beautiful city that’s right on the Pacific Ocean in Southern California. It has many universities that keep the population young and vibrant. There are also many magnificent beaches in the area and a beautiful climate year-round.
San Diego is also a popular destination for all types of travelers, such as backpackers and students. So, if you’re on a budget or just want to stay somewhere with a social atmosphere, then a hostel can be your best bet. If you’re hoping to experience San Diego’s nightlife, several great hostels offer pub crawls and various activities for guests in the evenings.
Top 4 Hostels in San Diego:
- 1. Lucky D’s
- 2. Beach Bungalow Hostel
- 3. USA Hostels Ocean Beach
- 4. CoLive Balboa Park by International Travelers House
The 4 Best Party Hostels in San Diego
Price: $28 to $38
Lucky D’s is a fun hostel to stay in the city. It has a social vibe, and the staff organizes a lot of activities for all guests. Aside from that, there are poker nights, pub crawls, quiz nights, and beer pong tournaments. If you’ve come to San Diego to try out the nightlife scene, this is the place to stay.
The hostel is centrally located about a two-minute walk from the Gaslamp Quarter. In this area, you’ll find a lot of great bars, clubs, restaurants, and shops. Petco Park, where you can watch a baseball game, is also nearby.
Lucky D’s also has all the usual amenities available for guests. Breakfast is served every morning for free. There are free internet and Wi-Fi access, lockers in every room, bike storage, bike rental, and a shared kitchen and commons room that guests can use.
If you’re looking to have a great time, Lucky D’s is one of your best choices in San Diego.
- Social atmosphere
- Convenient location to party
- Great amenities
Beach Bungalow Hostel
Beach Bungalow Hostel is another famous hostel in San Diego. It’s one of few hostels in the city that is right on the beach. You can enjoy surfing, snorkeling, and scuba diving outside the hostel. The hostel also provides all kinds of places for guests to hang out, including lounges and a shared kitchen. Most guests hang out on “The Deck” where you can take a seat and watch San Diego’s beautiful sunsets.
This hostel also offers guests free breakfast daily and dinner twice a week. The vibe in the hostel feels like there’s always something going on here, and it won’t be long before you make a few new friends. It is a quintessential backpacker’s hostel, and it is ideally located by the beach but also near many bars, clubs, restaurants, and shopping opportunities.
The hostel has six, eight, ten, and twelve-bed dorms to choose from.
- Great location (on the beachfront)
- Great amenities
- Free meals
USA Hostels Ocean Beach
Price: $31 to $60
It is a favorite hostel for budget travelers and backpackers that regularly visits San Diego. It’s conveniently located only two blocks away from the beach, and it’s housed in a recently refurbished building that is equally modern and comfortable. The hostel also offers a free shuttle service to most of the main tourist spots around San Diego, so transportation is accessible to and from the hostel. If you want to chill out at the beach, that’s an option as well. There are umbrellas, beach chairs, and towels available. You can also rent surfboards or bodyboards, and you can even take part in surfing lessons.
In the surrounding area, there are many a lot of clubs, bars, restaurants, and shopping opportunities. There’s a large shared kitchen and a lot of outdoor space if you want to socialize with other visitors. The hostel organizes several events for guests, such as pub crawls, yoga classes, beach bonfires, and guided trips to the farmer’s market.
There are a wide range of dorm rooms available, including four, six, and eight-bed dorms. Also, both female only and co-ed rooms are available.
- Free shuttle service
- Convenient location
- Lots of activities
CoLive Balboa Park by International Travelers House
This hostel is another top choice for travelers to San Diego. The hostel is comfortable and plenty of great amenities for guests. There’s also free breakfast and dinner daily. The staff organizes several activities for guests, including tours of the city and discounts on various tourist attractions. Also, the hostel has a social vibe, and there’s a large lounge with pool tables, darts, games, and a television. It is a great place to stay if you want to meet new people from around the world.
If you want to schedule any tours of around the area, the staff organizes waterfall hikes, sightseeing tours, snorkeling trips, brewery tours, happy hours, and nature walks. If you want to try out San Diego’s great nightlife, there are also club nights, pub crawls, and restaurant tours.
There are four-bed female-only dorms and six-bed co-ed dorms to choose from.
- Great amenities
- Fun activities
- Lots of room choices
How is San Diego’s Nightlife?
During the day, San Diego has a lot of activities to keep you occupied. When the sun goes down, these are the best places and things to do to experience the city’s nightlife
The Gaslamp Quarter is among most tourists’ favorite areas in San Diego. Mostly due to the lounges, restaurants, theaters, shops, nightclubs, and galleries, are a thriving scene throughout the year. Start the night by grabbing a bite at one of the city’s best restaurants. As San Diego is considered as the craft brew capital of the world, it’s a good idea to try dining at Union Kitchen and Tap, Barleymash, or Hopping Pig. All three places offer sumptuous food and refreshing booze.
Afterward, hit up the city’s thriving nightlife scene. If you want to dance till dawn, go to either Moonshine Flats or FLUXX. On the other hand, rooftop lounges such as Lounge Six and Altitude Sky Lounge let you chill underneath the stars. If you want to have a good laugh, see a show at The American Comedy Co.
If you’re looking for things to do in San Diego, don’t miss watching a baseball game. PETCO Park, the home of the San Diego Padres, is situated right next to the Gaslamp Quarter in the city’s East Village. So, you can easily have a glimpse of the nightlife scene while also taking in a baseball game. Less than a block from the park, you will reach the Half-Door House Brewing Company. It gives out craft brews in a cozy setting. You can also take a sit on the porch to have views of the park.
Moving on to the game itself, a night watching the boys of summer play America’s game is always a good time, in my opinion. Petco Park’s lively atmosphere is improved considerably by its top-notch food and beverage choices. Name another place where you can get a pulled pork sandwich from Phil’s Barbeque and a beer from Stone Brewing Co.? Nowhere. And that’s precisely why you should go.
Trips are always better when you leave the beaten path, and experience the city as the locals do. So, you need to try out the local bars of the place you’re going to as you’ll get a real taste of the area’s culture. It is especially true at San Diego’s local bars, where each part of the city has its distinct feel.
The Best Bars and Clubs in San Diego
1. Noble Experiment
If you manage to find the entrance hidden inside the neighborhood restaurant, the cloak-and-dagger scene at this tiny East Village speakeasy is perfect for a romantic date thanks to its sophisticated, intimate atmosphere and décor of golden skulls and mirrors. The skilled bartenders, who are dressed very smartly, mix excellent cocktails, and though the drinks are costly, you will have an elite, enlightening experience at the Noble Experiment.
2. Polite Provisions
Don’t expect a quick drink at North Park’s hot spot, Polite Provisions, for cocktail enthusiasts and hipster types, because of the bartender’s mix and muddle the strong, amazingly delicious drinks with delicate precision, drawing upon dozens of bitters and other artisanal ingredients. The real work of art, however, is the bright, open setting, which features a beautiful old-fashioned drugstore look. Take your pick from the variety of cocktails and spirits on the menu or the beer and wine menu that rotates daily.
3. The Aero Club Bar
The wall of whiskey is outstanding at The Aero Club, which is a comfortable, low-key dive bar. By the airport, the bar stocks enough scotch, bourbon, and rye (800-plus varieties) to calm any travelers or locals with any shaky nerves. Very friendly and professional bartenders keep the drinks flowing while pool tables provide some entertainment, and the aeronautical décor is rife with a historical feel.
4. ALTITUDE Sky Lounge
Ever wondered what it’s like to dance the night away at the highest point of the city? ALTITUDE Sky Lounge, at the top floor of the Marriot Gaslamp in San Diego, offers a lot of spacious dance floors where you and friends can dance the night away. Even on its busiest nights, the Sky Lounge is a nice break from the usual indoor nightclub. But you need to get there early so you can secure a spot near the fire pit. By doing so, you will enjoy an aerial view of Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres.
5. Moonshine Flats
Strap on your cowboy boots and be ready for a boot-scooting’ time at Moonshine Flats, located near Petco Park. Whether you are uninitiated to line dancing or feeling rusty, Throwdown Thursdays offer line dance lessons from 6 pm – 10 pm. You can also come back on Live Free Fridays and Rock Hard Saturdays to show other people how you groove. This country bar is the best place for both country lovers and normal partygoers alike.
About San Diego
From balmy beaches with a laid-back vibe to a gleaming modern image, San Diego offers a lot of things that tourists can enjoy. Located on the coast of Southern California, San Diego is the second-largest city in the state, with 1.3 million residents. It has long allured travelers for its perfect climate, long beaches, and proximity to the Mexican border (it’s right across Tijuana).
But there’s more to the city than surfer culture and quick access to the border. A rich maritime and military history continues to live in San Diego, which is the home of the Pacific Fleet of the US Navy. Also, the city has become known for the part that it played in the wildlife conservation movement because it houses the world-renowned Scripps Institute of Oceanography and San Diego Zoo and Safari Park. Its natural scenery is also very unique as it has rocky tidepools and seaside cliffs to desert hills and inland canyons.
San Diego is a proud city that never seems to cease growing, and though the city has a strong identity, many of its residents are newcomers, joining in the flood of immigrants to this city. With this has come the problems associated with Southern California cities, such as traffic jams and air pollution. And yet, though large itself, San Diego is also a place where many come to escape the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles, some 100 miles to the northwest. However, if you’re backpacking in the US and would want more adventure like that of LA’s, you may also visit New York.
Generally speaking, San Diego is a reasonably safe area. San Diego has a crime rate that’s 15 percent lower than the national average. Statistics show that San Diego is safer than 34 percent of all cities in the country.
Spring (March to May) and Fall (September to November) qualify for the best time to visit San Diego. During Spring, the City has mild weather and relatively fewer crowds at the beginning of the season. However, as soon as May strikes, tourists rush in, driving the room rates to increase.
San Diego is officially a Michelin-star destination. This week, Addison, a contemporary French fine dining restaurant at the Fairmont Grand Del Mar, became the first in San Diego to be awarded a prestigious Michelin star.