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Courtesy of Visit California

Why San Diego is the Perfect Wellness Destination

Why San Diego is the Perfect Wellness Destination
Healthy, sustainable activities and attractions abound in this coastal community

California has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to healthy living. Today there’s no better place to experience the best of wellness travel than San Diego.

Since 1888, when the historic Hotel del Coronado first opened its doors to discerning travelers, it has served as a sanctuary for those looking to retreat from everyday life and soak up the restorative sunshine, saltwater, and fresh sea air. At the hotel, guests can wake up, walk a few paces to the beach, and enjoy complimentary yoga on the sand as the sun rises. Or they can choose from a long list of classes offered in the resort’s fitness center—Beach Spin, PiYo (a combination of Pilates and yoga), Zumba, and more.

Just a short drive across the bay, at the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego’s sprawling Balboa Park, Thursday morning Hatha yoga sessions take place next to the koi pond. At the Mission Bay Aquatic Center travelers can combine yoga with stand-up paddleboarding, under the tutelage of experienced instructors. 

San Diego is also home to a number of holistic hideaways and fitness centers led by renowned practitioners and inspired thinkers. The Chopra Center, located in the Omni La Costa Resort, was established by alternative medicine pioneer Deepak Chopra, and offers spa treatments, yoga and meditation classes, and workshops. Choose from lectures on such subjects as quantum physics and divine consciousness, and meet with doctors trained in the 5,000-year-old Indian practice of Ayurvedic medicine.

Down the coast in Rancho Santa Fe you’ll find the Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa. On the spa treatment menu: diamond facials, light therapy, and a wide range of massages. A short drive inland will lead you to an authentic California experience at The Spa at Rancho Bernardo Inn, where you’ll relax in a temperature-controlled outdoor casita while receiving the Made Fresh Daily, a massage and scrub treatment that uses locally grown herbs.

Eating well is central to healthy living, and with produce from Southern California farms and seafood fresh from the Pacific, San Diego offers travelers an abundance of innovative restaurants to choose from. While many top choices offer gluten-free and vegetarian options, there are a few standouts to include on your list. Kindred, a cocktail bar and restaurant, brings a hipster edge to vegan cuisine with entrees like blackened tofu sandwiches and seared cauliflower steaks. And the name of Market Restaurant + Bar in Del Mar gives away its focus: a spotlight on locally grown produce and cheeses from nearby dairies. Executive Chef Carl Schroeder creates award-winning dishes, and there is a sushi bar as well.

In Partnership with Afar.

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Carol Highsmith

Southern California

Discover San Diego County

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Imagine 70 miles of sun-drenched coast, an inviting ocean, and a year-round daily forecast of 70°F, and you’ll understand why this southernmost stretch of the state is all about outdoor fun. Discover top theme parks and attractions like SeaWorld San Diego, San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and LEGOLAND California.

The first European explorer to land in California, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, came ashore in San Diego in 1542.

Relax at legendary retreats like Hotel del Coronado, find art and culture in San Diego and surrounding cities like luxurious La Jolla, and enjoy world-class golf at Torrey Pines, and enjoy culture and diversity, all at the edge of a sparkling blue sea.

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