Top 5 Spots to View a San Diego Sunset

Mission Bay San Diego Sunset
Mission Bay, San Diego

If I can put one touch of rosy sunset into the life of any man or woman, I shall feel that I have worked with God– G.K Chesterton

Encountering a San Diego sunset on the coast is something you will never forget. With San Diego having over 70 miles of coast,  where are the best places to experience a San Diego sunset?

Few things touch my soul more than a sunset. Something magical happens when the sun’s rays hit the ocean water, and it is as if the entire surroundings are shining from within.

I am pleased to share my top 5 spots where I think you can see that exceptional San Diego sunset in all its glory and more!

Under each listing, I have included one fun fact, or in other words, a secret.

Top Five San Diego Spots To Check Out a Sunset

Seaport Village, San Diego

Map of Downtown San Diego
Map of Downtown San Diego
San Diego Sunset

One of the best places to view a San Diego sunset is downtown San Diego over at Seaport Village.

Seaport Village is over 90,000 square feet of waterfront shopping, dining and 4 miles of winding paths adjacent to San Diego Bay in downtown San Diego and is within walking distance to the San Diego Convention center to the south and the Cruise Ship Terminal to the north.

We love coming here, especially in the wintertime, with all the decorations and lights. The kids love this place because of the 1895 working carousel, with handcrafted wooden animals to ride on.

Fun Fact-  The section of land that Seaport village sits, is known as, ” La Punta de Los Muertos”( Spanish for “Point of the Dead”). If you look around, there is a marker memorializing this site on the southeast corner of Market Street and Pacific Highway.

Seaport Village Address: 849 West Harbor Dr, San Diego-92101

San Diego Bay Sunset
Sunset-Jan 1, 2011
San Diego San Diego Sunset
San Diego Bay
Seaport Village San Diego Sunset
The trees add such a dramatic effect.
Seaport Village San Diego Sunset
Navy ship in the background.
San Diego Bay Sunset
The Grand Finale.

La Jolla- Ellen Browning Scripps Park 

La Jolla Map la jolla coast walk

San Diego Sunset

Surrounded by the ocean on three sides, with ocean bluffs, caves, tide pools, and sandy beaches, La Jolla has some of the best views of the ocean environment in all of San Diego.

The Ellen Browning Scripps Park is 12 miles north of Downtown San Diego. Near the park is a large grassy area with benches and picnic tables, and a sidewalk on the edge of the cliffs.

Fun Fact- In 1890, the La Jolla Railway was built, ultimately connecting this area to San Diego.  Right above the La Jolla Cove, the railway built a dance pavilion and bathhouse to attract visitors to the beach; as well as a tent city to house visitors of the area from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

Address: 1100 Coast Blvd, La Jolla-92037

La Jolla Sunset
I love the pink hue.

southern view La Jolla Sunset

sun setting down Ocean La Jolla

Ellen Browning Scripps Park San Diego Sunset
Goodnight, La Jolla!

Oceanside Harbor

Oceanside Harbor Map San Diego Sunset

San Diego Sunset

This harbor is a great place to witness a spectacular sunset, and of course, it is also a great place to check out all the boats.

Oceanside Harbor, located 37 miles north of Downtown San Diego, has over 900 permanent boat slips separated into two harbors.

The northern harbor is for recreational boaters, while the southern harbor includes a small commercial fleet, Sportfishing, and Charter fishing boats.

One of the perks of coming to Oceanside Harbor is eating at  Harbor Fish n Chips.

We sometimes come here for dinner after a day at a nearby beach when we have time. They have the best Fish n Chips and clam chowder! I have been eating at this establishment for well over 25 years.

Fun Fact-  The “USCGC Point Hobart” is based in Oceanside Harbor.

Address- 280 Harbor Drive South, Oceanside-92054

Oceanside Harbor pink sunset

Oceanside Harbor boats sunset

Oceanside Harbor San Diego Sunset

Ocean Beach Pier / Sunset Cliffs

Point Loma Map San Diego Sunset
San Diego Sunset

Ocean Beach Pier is one of the longest concrete piers on the West Coast, measuring 1971 feet.

Because you are so far out on the water, this makes for an exhilarating sunset experience.

We start at the Ocean Beach Pier and then get back into the car and drive for about a half-mile; and finally, we finish the sunset at the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park.

The 68-acre city park is adjacent to the ocean and on Point Loma’s western edge. The views here are insane, to be sure!

If you walk along the cliffs, please use extra caution as they can be very dangerous, particularly after it rains.

Fun Fact- I wanted to point out that there are secret tunnels in these cliffs. To learn more click on the Sunset Cliffs link above

Address Ocean Beach pier- 1950 Abbott St, San Diego-92017

Address Sunset Cliffs- Ladera Street, San Diego-92017

Ocean Beach Pier San Diego Sunset

Ocean Beach Pier San Diego Sunsets

Sunset Cliffs San Diego Sunset

Sunset Cliffs San Diego Sunset

South Mission Beach Jetty

South Mission Beach Jetty Map

San Diego Sunset

 Here is one of my favorite sites to watch the boats go in and out of Mission Bay.

The South Mission Beach Jetty is very popular for fishing and scuba diving near the rocks.

Located at the southern end of Mission Beach, there is always a crowd watching the surfing action. Many like to surf right next to the jetty, especially when the swells are right.

Following the walking path east, there is a grass lawn, children’s playground, and benches to sit on and check out the show if you like.

Generally speaking, I love the contrast of the boats coming into the colors of the sun on the water and the birds surrounding ships coming in.

Fun Fact- Did you know that it is legal to fish without a fishing license on a jetty?  Just make sure that the water surrounds you on three sides.

Address- South Mission Bay Jetty

South Mission Beach Jetty San Diego Sunsets

South Mission Beach Jetty San Diego Sunset

South Mission Beach Jetty San Diego Sunsets

San Diego Beaches Have the Best Sunsets!


Given these points, what do you think? Which spot is your favorite out of the five?

With all things considered, which sunset resonated with you?

Upload and share your favorite ocean sunsets in the comment section!

Here is to all the Sunsets from all over the world!

Until next time!


14 Replies to “Top 5 Spots to View a San Diego Sunset”

  1. I love La Jolla and Oceanside Harbor. I am a beach and ocean person, so sunsets and sunrises are pretty amazing to me. Your pictures are wonderful! I love them. Did you take these yourself? Amazing! I used to live about a 7 hour drive away from San Diego, and now I live on the beach in Florida. I guess you could say that I get pretty amazing sunsets here as well. Great post!

    1. Thank you! I know that I enjoy your site as well! We have the Atlantic beach girl and the Pacific beach girl 😉 I will definitely keep an eye on your page as well! Yes, these are all my photos from over the last 14 years. Thank you again for your comment!

  2. Holy cow, these pictures are amazing (although I know they don’t even begin to do justice to the actual experience)!

    I’m in NC, so I don’t get to see sunsets over the ocean unless I’m on an island. It is absolutely breathtaking how beautiful San Diego’s coastline is, and I have wanted to visit it for as long as I can remember. My wife and I are beach bums ourselves (we met in Wilmington, NC in school), so we’re always looking for new beachy destinations.

    All we need now is a cheap flight out and San Diego moves to the top of the list!

  3. I spent 5 years in the San Jose area so I have visited some of the places you mentioned here. There is such a peace that comes over me when I am at the beach and especially when I am able to witness the sunset.

    Thanks for sharing. You have brought back many memories.

  4. Absolutely stunning photos, very hard to choose which of the sunsets I love the best, but I think the sunset at Seaport Village might come in first. I too grew up with the beach just across the road from my home and loved watching the sunset, it gives you a feeling of peace and calmness. I have never been to San Diego and will definitely add it to my list of travel destinations. Thanks so much for the info.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment Caz! That sunset was taken on Jan 1, 2011 and we still haven’t forgotten about it! You were so lucky to live just across the street. That is my dream when we retire 😉 I would be happy living in a box, if it was across the street from the beach ! Thanks again.

  5. Colleen I just love sunsets too. Living on the west coast of Australia I am very blessed to enjoy similar settings. I would just love to come experience a San diego sunset one day however… on the bucket list now.

    I love your fun facts too!

    1. Thank you so much for your comment Fleur! I have been wanting to visit Australia since I was a small child. I want have to experience the Great Barrier Reef, have you been? Thanks again!

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