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San Diego may be famous for its idyllic beaches and pleasant sunsets but no one really talks about this hidden gem of an area where you can find some of the best Italian food without actually going to Italy. This area is called Little Italy.
Best Things To Do In Little Italy, San Diego (Jump To Section)
It is a chic, pedestrian-friendly neighborhood and is famous for its culinary and food extravaganza. It is a perfect place for foodies and people who like to go out to different places and try their food. A sensory overload where you can find some of the best Italian food experiences. The area is famous for having some quaint piazzas, sophisticated restaurants, trendy bars, and brewpubs.
Apart from this, the area is also famous for having a few places with significant history attached to them. Thus, this area is a perfect blend of history, amazing museums, and obviously delicious food. Here is a list of 7 amazing and diverse places that one should check out while in the help. This list will help you explore the area more holistically.
- Best Things To Do In Little Italy, San Diego
- 1. Little Italy Mercato Farmers’ Market
- 2. Firehouse Museum In Little Italy
- 3. Our Lady Of The Rosary Catholic Church
- 4. Amici Park In Little Italy
- 5. Piazza Della Famiglia
- 6. M Winehouse In Little Italy
- 7. Davanti Enoteca
Best Things To Do In Little Italy, San Diego
1. Little Italy Mercato Farmers’ Market
This has to be among the top highlighting things to experience while in the area. This is a huge weekly market of more than 150 vendors offering different things to sell. This is a big market so you have plenty of vendors and a lot of stalls to browse through. You can hope to find not only fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats but only packaged groceries.
Little Italy Mercato Farmers' Market, San Diego pic.twitter.com/sIdM4xC5kr— Dave Michels (@DaveMichels) May 25, 2019
You can also find other unusual items such as cheese etc. The market is not famous for just the home goods like these but other things such as plants and flowers too. You can buy flowers for your garden or indoor plants for your bedroom.
Not just the shopping and buying, this place has an immaculate and lively vibe to go with it. Amazingly friendly vendors on top of it just add to the place and make your experience a pleasant one. You can also find handicraft items as well as clothes and art pieces.
This is like a one-stop shop where you can find a range of things. This is a good place to find unique gift pieces as well. This market meets twice a week on Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and on Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
This is situated at 600 W Date St, San Diego, California.
2. Firehouse Museum In Little Italy
The best way to know about a place and actually explore is by going to a museum in the area. This not only provides you with historical information but also makes for an experience that is pleasant in itself. Whether you like going to a museum or not, you are going to love this.
"METROPOLITAN" 1903 American LaFrance Fire Engine Company's "Metropolitan" steam-powered pumper built for Milwaukee, WI. San Diego Firehouse Museum. 2021. pic.twitter.com/CBVM96CYT6— Langley Anderson (@LangleyAPhoto) January 8, 2022
It is a museum dedicated to the history of the firehouse of San Diego. This museum has everything related to fire extinguishing and the fire department. The museum itself is over 100 years old and you will be able to see important pieces of equipment from the firefighting history of the area.
You will be able to see fascinating fire fighting equipment and memorabilia dating as far back as the late 1800s. A few of the highlight exhibits include the first fire engine, a horse-drawn steamer, and a piece of steel from the world trade center. The museum will make you realize the rich firefighting tradition. Other exhibits include alarms, hats, hydrants, etc.
This museum for sure makes for a fascinating visit and you are going to love learning about the firefighting anecdotes and history. It is open four days a week from Thursday to Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
It is located at 1572 Columbia St, San Diego, California.
3. Our Lady Of The Rosary Catholic Church
This has to be the most beautiful thing you will visit in Little Italy. It is a Catholic pilgrim Church under the mantle of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is one gorgeous church you will ever see. The elegant, clean and sophisticated is nothing less than beautiful. The interior is equally beautiful, if not more.
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Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church was built as a labor of love by the Italian-Americans of the San Diego area in 1923. The restoration of the murals painted by Venetian, Fausto Tasca have revealed bright colors & rich textures in the tradition of historic churches of Italy. pic.twitter.com/0bn7f1aTIz— Little Italy SD (@LittleItalySD) June 12, 2020
There are large wall paintings of various scenes which are nothing but spectacular. The art inside is something to behold and witness for yourself. Even if you are not a religious person, you should consider visiting just on the fact that you will get to see something beautiful. You will be amazed by the art inside the church.
There is a gift shop there too where you can buy a lot of nice things not just for yourself but to gift your friends and family too. Overall, the beautiful exterior, the religious importance combined with the exquisite interior such as beautifully painted ceiling, etc deserves a visit. It stays open throughout the week in two windows per day from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. and from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
It is located at 1668 State St, San Diego, California.
4. Amici Park In Little Italy
Who doesn’t like going to a park? Whether you are an adult or you are just looking for a place to take your kids to, this is an excellent choice given how versatile this place is. It doesn’t only have an amphitheater and various ball courts but it also includes a dedicated dog park. This is a perfect place to go to on Saturdays as they have an outdoor screen and show Italian movies all the time. It makes for a perfect little date spot for you to go with your partner and enjoy an evening with each other.
The ambiance is always nice and the people are friendly and welcoming. You can take your dog with you so that they can run around and be themselves while you spend some quiet time with yourself. You can grab a coffee inside while you stroll along and enjoy your surroundings.
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Among other things, you can also buy produce, souvenirs, apparel etc. You can always buy good food to eat to make your visit even more pleasant. It stays open throughout the week from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
It is located at 1660 Union St, San Diego, California.
5. Piazza Della Famiglia
While in the area you must try a piece of Italy and Italian cuisine. This restaurant is located in the heart of Little Italy. Not only in the sense that it is in one of the most accessible places but it is also a center of activity in Little Italy. This place is tied to the past and is the present identity of the area and continues to be an integral part of the future. It is a hub of activities such as farmers’ markets, concerts, cultural events, and much more. The place is bustling with crowds and energy.
Come out for an evening of live music at the Marine Band San Diego Summer Concert featuring "Sound Strike" on July 30th at 6pm in the Piazza della Famiglia! These talented Marines will get you pumped with a performance that will be sure to keep you swaying – ooh-rah! pic.twitter.com/BRybflVc3t— Little Italy SD (@LittleItalySD) July 20, 2022
This is a vibrant and lively place where you will find not just good food but also an unmatched vibe. The food hall and piazza are great places to hang out and enjoy some good food. A perfect place to enjoy your food in an outdoor setting. There are so many good options available that everyone would find something or the other to eat and enjoy their time.
There are many performances of solo musicians going on which adds to the overall feel of the place. It stays open throughout the week from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
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It is located at 523 W Date St, San Diego, California.
6. M Winehouse In Little Italy
This is like a small little hidden gem of Little Italy. This is a cozy and intimate bar that focuses on service as well as ambiance equally. The exterior decor is nothing extraordinary but it is highly understated and homey with a few extra bits of decoration elements.
This is a bi-level bar that has one level more than just ground. Both the levels boast a homely feel with warm decorations making you feel like you are in a familiar space. This seating situation is intimate and you would love the cost ambiance of the place.
Wooden floors and the use of dark wood throughout the bar counter add to the mood of the place. They serve a wide range of wines. This place is a perfect location for those who like fancy dinners and are wine aficionados. The food looks delicious and the presentation is equally appealing.
The service is top-notch. Their Sangria and Charcuterie boards are especially popular. There are multiple games available for you to play while you sip on some delicious cocktails and amazing food. It stays open throughout the week from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.
It is located at 1918 India St, San Diego, California.
7. Davanti Enoteca
With a name such as Little Italy, you should be anticipating that there must be a lot of great eating out places that serve amazing Italian food. This one is no different. It is an Italian restaurant with a rustic-chic outlook and feel to it.
The exposed brick wall and use of lots of wood and wooden color give it a look that is not only elegant but welcoming and warm at the same time. They have indoor as well as Outdoor seating. There is a large patio where you can enjoy your delicious food in a semi-shaded open-air space. Their specialty is their refined Italian eats.
It is a perfect place to go with your friends, family or partner. They have a private patio as well. The happy hour burgers are one of their popular items on the menu. The indoor seating is cozy and intimate perfect for a date night dinner.
The food not only looks amazing but it tastes fantastic at the same time. The service is quick and immaculate. Overall, the ambiance is such that one would love to sit and grab a bite to eat. It stays open throughout the week from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
It is located at 1655 India St, San Diego, California.
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Note: The hours of operation, ticket prices, and admission criteria of museums, parks, etc. may change from time to time. For the most updated information, we recommend checking the official website of the attraction directly prior to your planned visit.
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