This week, I’m sharing the first San Diego neighborhood guide in my series, which starts with North Park! This neighborhood is by far one of my favorites in the city – the trendy shops, cool cafes, and incredible beer scene make it a super fun weekend spot (a.k.a we’re there at some point almost every weekend). Centered around 30th and University just a few minutes north of downtown, this up and coming area is definitely a must-see if you’re visiting San Diego.
San Diego Neighborhood Guide: North Park
Whether or not you live in San Diego, you’ve probably heard of this gem of a store. Filled with colorful stationary, gifts, treats, cocktail accessories, and a succulent potting station Pigment is a dream destination. It pretty much brings me happy tears every time I walk in (or maybe the tears are from wanting to buy every single thing in sight). Plus, they have an ombré pink wall outside. So, basically this spot is heaven.
What’s better than coffee + flowers? This darling combo shop unites two amazing concepts in one place. You can order a rose latte and avocado toast, and then peruse the curated gift shop and Native Poppy’s custom flower mart while you wait. The Communal Lounge in the back, now open for events, even comes complete with a pink door. Be forewarned, holding coffee while trying to take pictures of every cute corner can be difficult, so make sure to snag a table first 😉
Marble countertops. White walls. Espresso. Wine + beer. What more do you need from a coffee shop? Holsem is located just a stone’s throw away from Pigment, and is the perfect pick-me-up after a day of exploring. Whether you try out one of their creative latte concoctions or sit down for a glass of wine with a charcuterie board, this place doesn’t disappoint.
This restaurant brings camping chic to 30th Street. Reserve a canvas tent to dine in or grab a cozy table near the window and be prepared to feel like you’ve gone on your own little outdoor adventure. The menu is nature inspired as well, which means lots of fresh produce, a “picnic” charcuterie board, and s’mores for dessert. Stop by during the week for their happy hour to snag some inexpensive sips and snacks, too.
This pink + tropical café is what Instagram dreams are made of. The newest addition to University Street, Holy Matcha is already a huge hit in the neighborhood. Ceremonial matcha comes in pink ceramic bowls, while avocado toast and vegan donuts round out the menu. Definitely a must-visit!
San Diego may not have quite the same hip ice cream scene as LA, but Hammond’s is definitely giving our city something to be proud of. The retro-meets-modern decor along with the delectable flavors from Hawaii makes this spot a great treat. Did I mention they have mini ice cream cone flights?!
This gift/art shop is another one of my favorites in North Park. Artelexia is a vibrant store inspired by Mexico, and curated beautifully. It’s filled with handmade glassware, tapestries, flower crowns and countless piñatas, plus you can snag a tasty popsicle from their Viva Pops freezer!
Leave it to North Park to have one of the coolest pizzerias in the city. Located within the old U.S. Post Office, this restaurant is known for making pizzas inspired by favorites from around the world. Any spot that serves fresh pizza and rosé by the glass is great in my book, and the bright modern space puts it over the top.
It would be hard to write a San Diego neighborhood guide for North Park without at least mentioning the killer craft beer scene the neighborhood has going on. The area has over ten breweries/tasting rooms, which makes for a fun Saturday crawl. Some of our favorites include North Park Beer Co., Thorn Street, Mike Hess, and Modern Times. Most are pup friendly, too!
Other notable spots:
Underbelly (Hip patio spot for yummy ramen)
Young Hickory (Coffee + beer shop)
Coin-Op Game Room (Dive bar filled with retro arcade games)
Urban Solace (Southern comfort food with a cozy aesthetic)
Bottlecraft (Shop carrying bottled beers from around the world)