Many people love enjoying the city of San Diego when the sun is up. Sure. You can't really beat all the things you can do when the sun is up. However, there's a lot of amazing things that go on in San Diego once that sun sets.
Here are some FREE things you can do in San Diego at night
Historic Old Town in San Diego
Old Town San Diego is a must see if you're in America's Finest City. You'll have to remind yourself what year you're currently in as you walk around the historic town. You'll probably spend a few bucks as well as you pass the gift shops, museums, and restaurants.
Lights of Balboa Park
No visit to San Diego would be complete without a walkthrough of Balboa Park. There are over 17 museums which also consist of performance venues, art galleries, restaurants, and beautiful, well-kept gardens. Take advantage of the Free Admission Days at the museums and make sure to stick around when the sun starts to set. That's when the lights come out. The vibes are pretty romantic if you're there with your significant other during this part of the day.
If you want scenic, you'll get it here at Seaport Village. It's near the USS Midway, the famous "kissing statue", and many shops and restaurants along the water along the San Diego harbor. It's free to roam around (until 9 PM). You'll also find many street performers and overall, a great place to people watch.
Walk around Gaslamp Quarter
Sure, it'll cost you a few bucks to have a drink or meal, but walking around and checking out the atmosphere is absolutely FREE. You'll get to see all the amazing and historic Victorian architecture as well as the many galleries, shops, and music coming from the bars and restaurants.
Love Beer? Tour a Brewery
Did you know that San Diego is a hotbed for microbreweries? We've got MANY breweries in our fine city where beer is made locally. Many of these breweries, such as Ballast Point Brewing, offer free tours (yep, FREE). You'll get to see how the beer is made all behind-the-scenes.
SeaWorld's Daily Nightly Fireworks
If you're near the San Diego Bay, treat yourself to SeaWorld's nightly fireworks show during the summer. Sure, it'll cost you if you want to visit the park, but you can see the fireworks show from anywhere around the vicinity at one of the many shores and parks like Fiesta Island.
FREE Concerts During The Summer
We've got many outdoor and open-air music venues in San Diego. If you happen to be out and about during the summer, peep a few of our FREE concert series. Point Loma Summer Concerts and Coronado Promenade Concerts just to name a few. Some concerts will also feature local art and food that you can buy as well.
Hotel del Coronado
The historic and iconic Hotel del Coronado has graced MANY San Diego postcards over the decades. It's almost impossible to visit any San Diego giftshop and NOT see a postcard featuring a pic of The Del. If you plan on staying at the hotel, it'll cost you a pretty penny, but luckily, it's FREE to walk around. You'll find many boutique shops, restaurants, and plenty of sand on the beach shore to walk on. You'll want to take a few pictures while you're there as well. It's that picturesque! One thing you've got to think about is that you'll have to pay to park around the hotel, so be prepared to shell out some bucks for that. If you can figure out how to get to the hotel via public transit, rideshare, etc., you'll have a much easier time getting in and out of the area.
The Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla
If you're in La Jolla, stop by the Museum of Contemporary Art on every third Thursday of the month. Why? It's free on that day!
La Jolla Cove and Sunset Cliffs
While you're near the Museum of Contemporary Art, walk a few blocks down toward the ocean and stroll along the ocean and listen to the waves crashing against the shore. There are plenty of benches for visitors to sit and watch the sunset and have a chat with their friends or loved ones.