The Top Things to Do and See in South Park, San Diego CA

San Diego
San Diego | © Owen Tozer
Jed Johnson

Just to the southwest of San Diego’s world-famous Balboa Park, South Park originated as one of the city’s first streetcar suburbs. Now a primarily residential but nonetheless thriving urban neighborhood, South Park has many attractions for locals and visitors alike. Find out more about this distinctive neighborhood below.

Make Good

With tons of locally made goods that make perfect gifts for just about any occasion, Make Good is one of San Diego’s best boutiques. This store is perfect for those who are intentional shoppers, as it features many rescued clothes, handmade knit goods, and the finest stationary. With live jazz music on busy evenings, Make Good features artisans from all around San Diego and neighboring Tijuana, Mexico. The store was also included in 2015’s Best of San Diego magazine.

Juniper Canyon

With significantly less foot-traffic than neighboring Balboa Park, Juniper Canyon is another piece of nature in South Park. Full of foot paths, indigenous vegetation, and hilly vistas, this park is a breath of fresh air in the middle of the neighborhood. This piece of wilderness looks the same as did hundreds of years ago, with many of the native animals still living there. Many bird species, like the California gnatcatcher, and many small mammals can be spotted here while on a twilight walk.

Ginseng Yoga

Yoga is a big part of many Californians’ daily routine, and finding a good yoga studio is just as important as finding a quality coffeehouse. South Park’s top pick is Ginseng Yoga; open to regulars and one-time visitors alike, as well as participants of all ability levels, this sunny and friendly space is one of the top yoga studios in all of San Diego. A variety of classes are offered, including Vinyasa, “Chillax” on Friday nights, and Bheemashakti.

Balboa Park Golf Course

South Park’s namesake comes from it’s location on the southwest end of the city’s largest urban green space, Balboa Park. Closest to the neighborhood, however, is the park’s sprawling collection of golf courses, one of which is a 9-par executive course, the other the standard 18-par. Hilly, challenging, and offering superb vistas of Downtown San Diego, this course is just a short walk from the rest of South Park. Don’t worry about not being a member of this golf course: the course offers competitive and fairly inexpensive rates for just about everyone.

Progress

Even if you’re not in the market for new furniture, Progress sofas and chairs, which are just some of the store’s goods, are inviting enough to lure you inside. Selling modern, LA-made goods that are carefully thought out, this store also has more everyday offerings such as cards, children’s toys, and quirky kitchen supplies. Since 2013, Progress has been a must-stop for hipsters and those loving hipster-goods alike.

Junc.Life

A hip boutique that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is trendy, Junc.Life is one of South Park’s finest shopping options. Inspired by the unconventional, this store includes vintage to newly-minted products and everything in between. Junc.Life caters to styles both masculine and feminine and offers everything from furniture to home-goods to an enormous variety of clothing. Equal parts retro, upscale, and unique, this authentic boutique is a great shopping destination for couples or groups of friends who are looking for both men’s and women’s goods.

Graffiti Beach Boutique

This local boutique has a unique mixture of clothing, jewelry, and original souvenirs, all of which are made with Southern California in mind. Graffiti Beach partners with local San Diego artists to create some of the most authentic goods you’ll find anywhere in the city. Even though most of the store’s wares are handmade, the prices are on par with big box stores, which makes Graffiti Beach Boutique a sure pick over larger chain stores. This store is laid-back, artsy, and unpretentious, just like the larger South Park neighborhood.

By Jed Johnson

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