San Diego has a ton of different neighborhoods from Downtown's Little Italy to the diverse and lively neighborhood of Hillcrest but if you are looking for a community that is crafted with heart, you need to visit South Park. South Park tends to get overlooked by tourists as it's quite the hidden gem.
It's nestled between North Park and Golden Hill and just east of Balboa Park. It's an adorable and historic neighborhood with a mix of independently owned small businesses that give you that charming homey vibe.
We spent the day in South Park and really enjoyed the quaint tree-lined town and rounded up our favorite spots:
1. Cafe Madeleine
We started off our morning, in South Park, with breakfast at Cafe Madeleine's French Cafe. The pastries and coffee here are delicious and the service is super friendly. Since South Park is a dog-friendly neighborhood, we saw a handful of dogs walking in and out of the cafe.
2. Vinyl Junkies Record Shack
We don't necessarily collect vinyl records, but we do love music and appreciate the efforts of keeping vinyl music from going extinct. Although we grew up in the cassette tape generation, our parents had vinyl records lying around the house and there was just something about them that made you appreciate music even more.
3. The Daily Scoop
This is a small ice cream shop that houses a variety of unique ice cream flavors from Neiderfrank's Ice Cream, which is famous for making their ice cream the old-fashioned way. It's old-fashioned ice cream with fresh whole milk, fresh sweet cream, and 100% natural ingredients.
4. Gold Leaf
This is a lovely space with curated goods for the home and we practically wanted everything in here! It's definitely the place to go to find that one-of-a-kind gift or if you want to decorate your home with special pieces.
5. Del Sur Mexican Cantina
We were immediately drawn to Del Sur when we saw the succulent arrangements and colorful interior from across the street. They are vegetarian and vegan-friendly, dog-friendly, and kid-friendly. We had a couple of margaritas and ordered the à la carte tacos. We really enjoyed the complimentary chips and salsa as the chips were warm and the salsa was very fresh and mild.
Kindred is an awesome spot to grab drinks as they have an amazing atmosphere and a great list of creative cocktails. Their decor is eye-catching with a marbled door entrance, bright pink wallpaper, and death-metal tunes. Do you dare to enter?
7. Communal Coffee
One of the newest additions to South Park is Communal Coffee. Communal Coffee is no stranger to San Diego as its original cafe is located right next door in North Park. However, this one has a completely different vibe and all the seating is outdoors. It's a gorgeous 2,000 square foot oasis where you can order a craft latte (I had the Lavender Honey Latte) at the adorable vintage Shasta trailer.
Getting To South Park
South Park is very close to San Diego Airport, so if you are visiting and staying in Downtown San Diego it's a quick 10 minute Uber ride. Once you arrive in South Park, if you don't feel like walking there are several bike sharing stations which is a great way to explore the neighborhood's many historic buildings.