Winter is winding down and the first day of spring will be here in March! There’s still time to come and winter with us. “Wintering” is the act of staying at a place throughout the winter—and what better place to wrap up the coldest season of the year than with a stay than San Diego! While the rest of the country is still frigid, our sandy beaches welcome visitors year-round. It’s the perfect time to take in the last few weeks of winter with a whale watching trip, and then baseball season is just around the corner!
Whale watching remains a favorite experience among visitors and locals alike. San Diego is perfectly positioned along the migration route of both gray and blue whales making it an ideal location to have a close encounter with these gentle giants. From Mid-December through April (peaking in February), more than 20,000 gray whales make a 10,000 mile round-trip journey from Alaska to the lagoons of Baja California, where the females give birth to their calves. This is the longest mammal migration traversed on an annual basis.
Birch Aquarium at Scripps is perched on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, and features more than 60 habitats of fishes and invertebrates from the cold waters of the Pacific Northwest to the tropical waters of Mexico and beyond. They host a week-long celebration of whales during their annual Winter “Whale Fest”, which is fun for the whole family. It’s also a great spot to view the migration from the shore. A few fantastic spots to view the grey whale migration from land include the Birch Aquarium, the Cabrillo National Monument and Torrey Pines State Reserve where the hiking trails offer expansive views of the Pacific.
Want to get a little closer to these magnificent creatures? San Diego offers several excursion companies that allow you to have an up-close view of these gentle giants from the water. Many of the tour operators have extensive knowledge of the whales and their migration habits and will happily share this information during the tour. This is definitely a recommended activity for all ages and a great addition to your San Diego itinerary during the Winter/early Spring seasons. We recommend H&M Landing, a pioneer in West Coast whale watching since 1935. From 3 Hour Local Trips to longer expeditions to the seacoasts and lagoons of Baja California, H&M will handle all of your whale watching desires.
San Diego is proud of our home baseball team, the Padres, who reside at Petco Park downtown. Petco Park is spectacular in every way, combining the best sight lines in baseball with breathtaking views of San Diego—even voted the “World’s best ballpark in America’s finest city.” It has been home to the Padres since 2004 and is stationed less than two miles from La Pensione Hotel. Spring training begins at the end of February and runs through mid-March, with the official season opening on March 26. Tickets start at just $47 with several promotions offered throughout the season. Even if you’re not a huge baseball fan, taking in a Padres game and the downtown sights is a must-do while in San Diego.
THE CAMPAGNOLO GRAN FONDO
We love calling Little Italy our home and have grown quite fond of all things Italian. For the past 12 years, Little Italy has hosted an event called the Gran Fondo, roughly translated “Big Ride”. Gran Fondos are designed for everyone. Whether you are an experienced cyclist wanting to push your own limits, or you are someone new to riding and want to ride at your own pace, The Gran Fondo San Diego has a perfect ride and group for you! This two-day event starts on Sunday April 5th, 2020 and includes a Bike & Fitness Expo with guest speakers and bike, health and fitness clinics, and ending with an Italian Feast at the Finish. Register to ride or participate as a spectator, but remember to book your room early!
It’s almost time to move our clocks ahead one hour, which means more daylight to explore San Diego! Stay caffeinated when you stay with us by grabbing a cup or two of your favorite coffee served at Caffe Italia, our favorite coffee shop downstairs. Located in the heart of Little Italy, La Pensione Hotel is the perfect basecamp for all your wintering and upcoming spring adventures, and we look forward to welcoming you soon!
Book your room today, and make La Pensione Hotel your basecamp for 2020!