Old Town San Diego is a frequent visit for many San Diego residents as well as tourists. What attracts so many to this small area of San Diego is the history and culture that remains a part of old town. There are over 25 restaurants in a mile radius all offering authentic and cultural cuisine. In addition to the food and shopping Old Town hosts many events and has nightly entertainment in many of the restaurants located here. Within Old Town there are three Park Agencies: State, City and County, all of which have historic sites operated as museums. Located at the northern end of Old Town, Old Town San Diego State Historic Park is the most visited park in the state system and all of its museums are free to the public. The state park spans the decades from Californio rule to the Mexican Period and finally to the American Period. Experience the days of the dons at the 1825 Casa de Estudillo, one of the finest adobe haciendas in the state; view a rare original stagecoach at the Wells Fargo Museum; see a scale model of nineteenth century Old Town at the reconstructed Robinson-Rose House, one-time Lodge of the Freemasons and home of San Diego’s first newspaper The San Diego Herald; the Black Hawk Livery & Blacksmith; the San Diego Union newspaper building; and the first public schoolhouse in San Diego, the Mason Street School.
There are many more historic museums at the center of Old Town: the Whaley House Museum Complex is a county-owned park consisting of five historic buildings, the most famous of which is the Whaley House, believed by many to be the most haunted house in America in addition to housing the former county courthouse and San Diego’s first commercial theater; the Old Adobe Chapel, San Diego’s former parochial church and setting for the famous wedding of “Ramona,” is now a city-owned museum; the Church of the Immaculate Conception was formally dedicated in 1919; El Campo Santo Cemetery is the final resting place of nearly 500 nineteenth century residents including the Indian leader Antonio Garra and the notorious boat thief Yankee Jim Robinson; and you won’t want to miss the Sheriff’s Museum. All of these museums can be found along San Diego Avenue, Old Town’s main thoroughfare. Just up the hill from San Diego Avenue are the Serra Museum and Presidio Site, the Mormon Battalion Visitors Center, and Heritage Park, a 7.8 acre county park where seven Victorian homes have been relocated to save them from demolition and now house shops and bed and breakfasts.
|Tour Historic Old Town
There are several types of tours to choose from. With a town as rich in culture as Old Town you could easily take more then one of these tours and gain multiple perspectives.
Amazing state of the art video tours, interactive computers, pan for gold and make bricks. Enjoyment for the whole family. Open 9-9 daily tours every 15 min.(619) 298-3317
Tour the Whaley House noted to be the most haunted house in America and the Adobe Chapel in Old Town two haunting tours in one -(619) 297-7511.
Boosters of Old Town
This non-profit organization leads tours through Old Town State Park only. Dedicated volunteers in period costume guide you on a walking tour of prominent Old Town landmarks that old and young alike will enjoy. For reservations (619) 469-3174.
Old Town Trolley Tours
Various tours will take you by trolley bus throughout San Diego. Perfect for the visitor who wants to take a load off their feet and enjoy the sites of San Diego by trolley. Conductors combine colorful anecdotes, humorous stories and historical information into a fast moving two-hour narrative that is both entertaining and educational.
For reservations 619-298-8687.
Old Town State Park Tours
Park aides lead these informative and friendly tours. No reservations necessary; just show up at the Old Town visitor’s center at the Robinson Rose building on the plaza. Tours are free. This is a service provided by the State of California. For reservations 619-220-5422
From its beginnings in the blue agave fields of Jalisco, to its consumption in small cantinas and trendy restaurants, tequila is the quintessentially Mexican drink.
Tequila, like its cousin, mezcal, is made from the agave plant. Contrary to popular belief, the agave is not a member of the cactus family, but rather comprises its own distinct botanical family, agavaceae, related to the lily.
What makes good tequila? For some it is the earthy, vegetable taste and aroma of the agave. For others it is the sharp bite of the blanco or reposados. Still others prefer the smooth, body of the añejos. The best advice is to try several brands and several types to find the taste you like.
It is said that, Old Town San Diego serves more tequilla than anywhere else in the world so there is plenty to choose from.
Types of tequila
Blanco or plata (white or silver): the most common type. It's considered 'unaged' under 60 days
old, and may be bottled fresh from distillation. Sometimes this is a harsh, young (joven) drink, but it can also be tastier and more robust than highly refined varieties, if it's marked "100 per cent agave”.
Reposado means rested. This is aged from two months to up to a year in oak casks or barrels. This is where the better tequilas start and the tastes become richer and more complex. The longer the aging, the darker the color and the more the wood affects the flavor.
Añejo (aged, or vintage): aged in govern
ment-sealed barrels of no more than 350 liters, for a minimum of a year. Many of the añejos become quite dark and the influence of the wood is more pronounced than in the reposado variety.