24 Best Things to Do in Little Italy San Diego

Full of delicious food, culture, and history, exploring San Diego’s Little Italy is an unbeatable way to spend a day for those seeking a taste of authenticity.
Todd Sarouhan
Some of the links in this article are affiliate links. This means if you make purchases through them, I may be compensated at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain my own.
Best Things to Do in Little Italy San Diego
The Story of Little Italy
Best of Little Italy
Save on Tours
Featured Hotel
Tours & Adventures

From Tuna to Trattoria: The Story of Little Italy

Getting a Beer at Ballest Point Brewing in Little ItalyOld Town Trolley Tours Going Through Little Italy

Originally known as a small fishing community, Little Italy in San Diego County is now one of the culinary capitals of California, teeming with incredible traditional Italian dishes and fusion cuisine.

Authentic family-owned restaurants, classy wineries, and quant gelato shops are found around every corner in this Downtown San Diego neighborhood. There’s even a sizable craft beer scene in town, complete with nationally-recognized icons like Ballast Point Brewing.

The most popular locales in Little Italy include India Street, the commercial center of the town, and Kettner Boulevard, which is affectionately nicknamed Top Chef Alley thanks to the large number of upscale eateries located throughout. Columbia Street runs north and south, parallel to India Street, right through the center of the neighborhood and is also worth strolling for the best pizza, pasta and shopping in the area.

Of course, Little Italy’s best attractions include much more than just food and drinks! You’ll also find an array of historic and cultural points of interest, with plenty of ways to spend time sightseeing and learning about the way Italian American immigration has helped to shape the development and rise in popularity of this quaint neighborhood.

The area is filled with indoor and outdoor eateries, plenty of pubs, great local shops, and a couple art galleries. Don’t miss the Piazza della Famiglia, often referred to as the heart of Little Italy, and catch some live music as you sit by the fountain.

If you happen to be visiting in the springtime, check out the Mission Federal ArtWalk which is held each year. This is also a great time to shop at one of the best farmers markets in San Diego, the Little Italy Mercato Farmers Market held on Saturday afternoons.

Join Todd in the Embarcadero of San Diego neighborhood for an all-inclusive tour of Wyndham San Diego Bayside. This welcoming family hotel is just across street from the Cruise Port and the Maritime Museum of San Diego with gorgeous balcony views of the bay.

Stay at the Wyndham San Diego Bayside

The 24 Best Things to See and Do in Little Italy, San Diego

Whether you’re visiting Little Italy for the food, the history, or the fun attractions, check out our list of the 24 best things you must do on your next trip to Little Italy, San Diego!

Pali Wine Co in Little Italy
Pali Wine Co in Little Italy

1) Take the Vino! Vino! Little Italy Wine Tour

San Diego Tours: 10 Best San Diego Food & Beer Tours

Great Italian wine is practically as synonymous with Italy as its cuisine! The Little Italy neighborhood is home to a number of wineries, wine bars, and vineyards.

On the Vino! Vino! Little Italy Wine Tour, you can sample the offerings of multiple different wineries while also learning about the history of the neighborhood and the winemaking process. This is a fun tour that’s incredibly informative, but the big draw is the wine and food samples you’ll get to enjoy as you walk down India Street. As a premier San Diego tour , it also makes our list as one of the Best Things to Do in San Diego’s Top Neighborhoods!

The Vino! Vino! Tour departs from Vino Carta, 2161 India St, San Diego, CA 92101, USA. Meet your guide here, then proceed to three different venues on the walking tour.

Book Wine Tasting Walking Tour
Pretzel Bites Appitizer, Tacos and Beer at Ballast Point Brewery in Little Italy
Pretzel Bites Appitizer, Tacos and Beer at Ballast Point Brewery in Little Italy

2) Visit the Best Restaurants in San Diego’s Little Italy Booze and Bar Bites Tour

San Diego Tours: 10 Best San Diego Food & Beer Tours

Combining the best of both worlds in food and drink, it’s easy to see how the Little Italy Booze and Bar Bites Tour is another clear choice as one of the Best Things to Do in San Diego, regardless of neighborhood.

Not only will you have the chance to learn about the storied past of Little Italy, including the way it transformed from fishing village to culinary hotspot, but you’ll also get to sample offerings from local pubs, rooftop bars, breweries, and restaurants. You can expect to enjoy a wide range of cuisine that is as diverse as the neighborhood’s population.

The tour usually departs Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 5:00pm from 550 W Date St, San Diego, CA 92101, USA. On the Booze and Bar Bites Tour, one thing’s for certain: you won’t leave hungry!

Book the Booze and Bites Tour
One of the Many Sidewalk Cafes in Little Italy
One of the Many Sidewalk Cafes in Little Italy

3) Take the Little Italy Food Walking Tour

San Diego Tours: 10 Best San Diego Food & Beer Tours

Little Italy is best known for its wide array of authentic Italian food, fusion dishes, and delicious drinks. Taste your way through the neighborhood on the Little Italy Food Walking Tour, where you’ll have the chance to try samples from many different restaurants serving a variety of bites, all while supporting local businesses and learning a little about the town.

This slow-paced walking tour is perfect for the adventurous foodie, as you’ll get to taste many popular local dishes from various family-owned and operated businesses. Learn about Little Italy’s history, which is rich with tales of immigrants and vibrant culture, and get a first-hand look at how the neighborhood has developed in recent years.

Top off your evening with a sweet scoop of classic Italian gelato - this is one attraction where you’re guaranteed to leave satisfied!

Book Little Italy Food Walking Tour
Firetruck Bolt Brewery
Firetruck Bolt Brewery

4) Learn About Little Italy’s History at the Firehouse Museum

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

Located at 1572 Columbia St., in the previous home of San Diego Fire Station No. 6, the Firehouse Museum has been in operation since 1962. This unique Little Italy museum displays all kinds of firefighting memorabilia from the last 100 years, and it’s a great place to learn about local firefighters and notable blazes throughout San Diego’s history.

Check out various kinds of firefighting gear, including past versions that are still in use today, all while recognizing the valiant efforts of fire marshals, chiefs, dispatchers, and firefighters that have helped keep their hometown safe for decades. The museum also has its own gift shop where you can purchase firefighting apparel and other commemorative items.

Erika is Loving the Brothels, Bites and Booze Tour
Erika is Loving the Brothels, Bites and Booze Tour

5) Go Sightseeing on the Private Gaslamp / Little Italy Walking Tour

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

As one of the oldest neighborhoods in Southern California, Little Italy is full of history!

Learn about its unique past as you tour the sights on the Gaslamp/Little Italy Walking Tour, one of the Best Things to Do in the Best Neighborhoods in San Diego. This fun sightseeing tour includes stops outside the Victorian buildings of 5th Avenue of the Gaslamp Quarter, Gaslamp Museum at the Davis-Horton House, the Waterfront Park and Piazza della Famiglia in Little Italy, and both the artisan Little Italy Mercato Farmers Market.

Tours are wheelchair accessible, last about 3 hours, and are done in time for dinner! Build up an appetite, take in the sights of Little Italy and the nearby neighborhoods, and enjoy an incredible meal to finish off the evening!

Book Little Italy / Gaslamp Walking Tour
Old Town Trolley Tours Going Through Little Italy
Old Town Trolley Tours Going Through Little Italy

6) See the Sights on the Old Town San Diego: Hop-On Hop-Off Narrated Tour

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

If you’re interested in learning about Little Italy and the surrounding neighborhoods as well, you can’t go wrong with the Old Town San Diego: Hop-On Hop-Off Narrated Tour.

In addition to stopping at various points of interest throughout Old Town, Coronado, Balboa Park, and the Gaslamp Quarter, this bus tour also travels through Little Italy, giving you the option to ride the bus all around the city.

This tour features live narration from onboard conductors, making it a great way to learn fun facts and interesting trivia about the area. Its greatest feature is its flexibility, as you can jump on or off at any of the bus’ 12 stops. The tour is a great way to get around many of San Diego’s most popular neighborhoods or just fit in a few stops between other activities on your itinerary.

The tour also has a 2-Day Hop-on Hop-off San Diego Trolley by Old Town Trolley Tours version as part of the Explorer variety of the Go City San Diego pass. Get 2-day unlimited access plus combine it with top area attractions like the San Diego Zoo in nearby Balboa Park, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Downtown, or a San Diego Harbor Cruise by Hornblower Cruises on the beautiful San Diego Bay to maximize your discount!

Use the discount code GVSD5OFF and save even more!

Book Tour

7) Eat Artesanal Pizza at Filippi’s Pizza Grotto

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

There are few better places to get pizza than in Little Italy. Of the many Italian eateries serving up authentic slices you can’t get anywhere else on the West Coast, Filippi’s Pizza Grotto is one of the best, and it’s earned its place as a beloved local favorite.

This family-owned restaurant serves pizza with a variety of classic toppings, as well as authentic traditional Italian sandwiches, pasta dishes, and salads. There’s also an extensive wine menu if you’re dining in.

Be sure to stop by and check out the store inside as well, which includes pantry staples and a fresh deli counter. The restaurant also features live music in the evening on the weekend.

The Front of the USS Midway Museum As Seen from a Boat
The Front of the USS Midway Museum As Seen from a Boat

8) Secure a USS Midway Museum Entry Ticket (at a Discount)

San Diego Area Museums: USS Midway Museum San Diego

A discounted entry ticket to the USS Midway Museum gets you access to hop aboard a real Aircraft Carrier with the longest serving history of the entire American fleet. Now docked along the Embarcadero, the USS Midway has an extensive Naval history, as it played a pivotal role in many military conflicts, most notably the Battle of Midway during WW2. Learn all about this exciting history when you visit the museum, and be sure to take a photo in front of the famous Unconditional Surrender, a.k.a. The Kissing Statue.

Discount Admission to the USS Midway Museum is available when you purchase an All-inclusive Go City San Diego pass, which also nets you free and reduced entry fees to dozens of other San Diego attractions across the city!

Buy Discount Ticket to the USS Midway

9) Grab an Ice Cream at Bobboi Natural Gelato

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

Classic gelato is perhaps the most famous Italian dessert, and you can try authentic gelato and fresh ice cream for yourself at Bobboi Natural Gelato in Little Italy. This gelateria serves up a variety of staple and seasonal flavors to hundreds of customers on especially warm days in San Diego, so it’s a must-try for vacationers seeking the ultimate Little Italy experience.

Bobboi’s gelato and sorbet is made in-house with locally-sourced ingredients. They boast a 90% organic ingredient rate, making them one of the freshest ice cream purveyors in the city. There are vegan and dairy-free options offered as well to suit any dietary restrictions, so all are welcome!

Sunset Harbor Cruise in San Diego Bay
Sunset Harbor Cruise in San Diego Bay

10) Set Sail on the Sights & Sips 2-Hour Sunset Cruise on San Diego Bay

San Diego Tours: 13 Best San Diego Harbor Cruises & Boat Tours

Experience the beautiful sight of the bay from a luxury sailboat, completing the picture of decadence with a drink in your hand, when you take the Sights & Sips 2-Hour Sunset Cruise on San Diego Bay. This overview of the harbor area features a variety of specialty cocktails and tasty light bites that are sure to keep you refreshed as you tour around the San Diego Bay during seaside happy hour.

True pampering awaits during your cruise, where the crew will see to your every need as you enjoy the view. Bring a camera to snap a few photos of the bay during sunset, and look out over sun-lit landmarks like the USS Midway, USS Ronald Reagan, Seaport Village, and Coronado Bay Bridge.

Book Sunset Cruise
Antipasta and Wine in Little Italy
Antipasta and Wine in Little Italy

11) Enjoy a Delicious Italian Wine at Davanti Enoteca

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

When thinking of Italian cuisine, hearty pasta dishes and delicious pizza is sure to come to mind first, but wonderful wines are sure to follow closely behind. Try an authentic Italian wine of your choosing at Davanti Enoteca, a restaurant in Little Italy that’s also known for its famous Davanti burger.

The extensive menu at Davanti Enoteca has options that are designed to appeal to anyone, with plenty of pasta, chicken, beef, sandwiches, eggplant, seafood, vegetarian options, and desserts. Have a four-course meal, or go just for the wine and a slice of cheesecake - either way, the upscale atmosphere and tasty food and drink options are sure to impress even the pickiest of eaters.

Oldest Bar in San Diego, the Waterfront in Little Italy
Oldest Bar in San Diego, the Waterfront in Little Italy

12) Grab a Drink at San Diego's Oldest Tavern - Waterfront Bar & Grill

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

The Waterfront Bar and Grill was established on December 5, 1933, making it the oldest tavern that still remains in operation in all of San Diego, and one of the oldest taverns along the West Coast. As a result, it has become a local legend and favorite hangout spot, popular enough to sell its own merch in a commemorative gift shop, but the drink menu and fun atmosphere is the real draw of this bar.

Choose from a selection of national and local craft beers, wines, and mixed drinks, and pair your choice with tasty Mexican themed entrees and appetizers. Dine on burgers, sandwiches, tacos, burritos, and platters while kicking back and sharing a drink or two with friends.

Mona Lisa Deli in Little Italy
Mona Lisa Deli in Little Italy

13) Shop at a Local Italian Supermarket

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

San Diego’s farmers markets are a great way to connect with the local community and pick up a few odds and ends, whether you’re looking for farm-fresh produce, premade meals, or gifts. In Little Italy, you can find the Mona Lisa Italian Market, which hosts many vendors selling authentic Italian meals, ingredients, and other staples. Try out something new, check out the wares on offer, and enjoy being surrounded by the atmosphere of a real Italian market.

The Mona Lisa Market also has an attached restaurant where you can enjoy hot meals made with traditional recipes passed down through generations. Stop in for a delicious dinner, or swing by for a few drinks and a deli sandwich during lunch.

San Diego Seal Tour Driving on Land
San Diego Seal Tour Driving on Land

14) Take a San Diego SEAL Tour

San Diego Tours: 13 Best San Diego Harbor Cruises & Boat Tours

San Diego is characterized by its close connections to both the ocean and the shore, and you can experience both on a San Diego SEAL Tour.

These “sea and land” excursions give tour-goers the best of both worlds without compromising on either. Board a unique vehicle equipped to travel city streets just as well as it navigates the bay, and see all manner of exciting local attractions as you take in the sights.

SEAL Tours have a special focus on San Diego’s military history, so they’re perfect for vacationers who are interested in learning about the city’s extensive Naval history. Listen to live narration as you relax and let the Hydra-Terra ferry you through Shelter Island, the Downtown area, and the San Diego Bay, where you can look out over the Naval vessels that call the bay their home!

Book SEAL Tour

15) Have Dinner at the Amazing Herb & Wood Restaurant

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

There are hundreds of incredible places to dine in Little Italy, but the authentic Herb & Wood Restaurant still manages to stand out among the competition.

The restaurant features a delicious menu of Mediterranean cuisine, complete with dinner, desserts, and an array of cocktails. Brunch selections are also a great choice, especially on the weekends. The restaurant is beloved for its welcoming yet classy atmosphere, which is great for everything from family meals to more romantic evenings.

Herb & Wood serves up rustic dishes that take simple staple ingredients and elevate them to new heights of flavor. Mediterranean palettes meet Californian ideals of sustainability, all while creating a charming homey atmosphere with a hint of elegance.

Harbor Cruise Boat in San Diego Bay
Harbor Cruise Boat in San Diego Bay

16) Sail on a Harbor Sightseeing Cruise

San Diego Tours: 13 Best San Diego Harbor Cruises & Boat Tours

No visit to Little Italy is complete without popping over to the Embarcadero for a tour of the San Diego Bay!

Consider taking the Harbor Sightseeing Cruise for the perfect laid-back way to see the city’s oceanside landmarks. You’ll have the opportunity to climb aboard a huge luxury yacht as you cruise around the harbor. Look out over famous points of interest including seafaring vessels from the Navy Surface Fleet, all against the beautiful backdrop of the San Diego skyline and the bay itself.

The sightseeing cruise includes professional commentary from the ship’s captain, featuring plenty of interesting fun facts and tales from the past at each landmark. The narration also includes information about local conservation efforts for wildlife and their bayside habitats.

Book a Harbor Cruise
Mosaic Artwork of Fish Being Caught in Fishing Net
Mosaic Artwork of Fish Being Caught in Fishing Net

17) Go Art Supply Shopping

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

Are you an arts and crafts enthusiast, or are you looking for some unique gifts to take home as souvenirs? If so, be sure to stop into the BLICK Art Materials supply store in Little Italy, where you can purchase all kinds of crafting supplies perfect for any DIY project. Let the creative juices flow as you browse the aisles, or look for cute art pieces and statues that make the perfect home decor additions. Souvenirs are fairly priced with everything from high-end professional pieces to discounted one-of-a-kind finds!

In addition to selling a large catalog of supplies, BLICK art supply stores also support the community by partnering with local artists and art-centric organizations, so you can feel good about your purchases. Keep an eye out for events held throughout the year which include charity drives, art showcases, and more.

Balboa Statue at the Main Square of Balboa Park, San Diego
Balboa Statue at the Main Square of Balboa Park, San Diego

18) Take a San Diego City Tour

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

Get a comprehensive overview of all the best sights in the city on the San Diego City Tour, which traverses through all the best landmarks, historic locales, points of interest, and beautiful vistas around the Gaslamp Quarter, Balboa Park, and La Jolla neighborhoods. This tour provides great photography opportunities with an array of scenic views along the coast, plus participants will learn a lot about the city’s most interesting sights further inland.

Tours depart from Five Star Tours & Charter Bus Company, 1050 Kettner Blvd Suite D, San Diego, CA 92101, USA bright and early at 9:30 a.m. so you can skip the traffic and see the sights before the crowds arrive.

Book City Tour

19) Visit the Wine Bar at M Winehouse

Neighborhood: Little Italy San Diego

Italian wines are some of the finest available, and you can sample them to your heart’s content at M Winehouse. This quaint wine bar is a great spot to share a glass or two with friends while enjoying some light bites. The outdoor decks offer the perfect stop for an evening conversation or a ladies’ weekend vacation. If you discover a new favorite, purchase a bottle to take home.

While the wine bar itself is new, the building is not, and these charming elements have been retained and combined with modern design. Each element of M Winehouse culminates in a gorgeous antique ambiance, from the French bistro inspirations of the interior to the classy yet natural decor of the outdoor patio. Drink wine while absorbing the local culture, or simply enjoy San Diego’s sunny weather in style.

Salt and Whisky Bar at the Horton Grand Hotel in the Gaslamp Quater
Salt and Whisky Bar at the Horton Grand Hotel in the Gaslamp Quater

20) Ride the Downtown & Gaslamp Loop Scooter Tour

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

Forget walking around the city - skip the sore feet and traverse the road by scooter instead! On the Downtown and Gaslamp Loop Scooter Tour, you’ll have the freedom to visit various locations throughout the Gaslamp Quarter and Downtown areas at your own pace, all while the scooters’ built-in GPS helps guide you through the city with confidence. Listen to the pre-recorded narration for interesting facts about historic landmarks and neighborhoods, such as how San Diego’s Italian population grew in what would later become Little Italy.

Both informative and exciting, the loop scooter tour is one of the best ways to navigate the city while also learning about all the little things worth appreciating that make the area so unique.

Book Tour
Patriot Jet Boat Thrill Ride in San Diego Bay
Patriot Jet Boat Thrill Ride in San Diego Bay

21) Cruise on the Patriot Jet Boat Thrill Ride

San Diego Tours: 13 Best San Diego Harbor Cruises & Boat Tours

If slow cruises aren’t your thing, skip the yachts and seek out a heart-pounding ride full of excitement with the Patriot Jet Boat Thrill Ride!

This exciting tour of the bay is set to pumping rock music which serves as a backdrop for your thrill ride around the harbor. Your captain and tour guide will establish a playful and fun-loving vibe with humorous and interesting anecdotes about the bay’s famous landmarks.

While the blazing fast speeds of the jet boat are fun, special care is taken to ensure all passengers have a safe ride, so you can travel free of worries and simply enjoy the feeling of the wind in your hair.

Book Patriot Jet Boat Tour
The Beautiful Casa Del Prado Theater at Balboa Park
The Beautiful Casa Del Prado Theater at Balboa Park

22) Drive the GPS Talking Tour Cars: Downtown & Balboa Park

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

Another great method for touring San Diego at your own speed, the GPS Talking Tour Cars: Downtown & Balboa Park lets you decide where you want to go and what experiences you want to prioritize as you cruise through the city on talking tour cars. These Storytelling cars are equipped with GPS so you’ll always know how best to navigate, and the pre-recorded narrations will highlight interesting sights and other landmarks as you pass them by in Downtown San Diego.

In addition to touring through Little Italy, the Talking Tour Cars are also designed to drive through Balboa Park, which is filled with examples of Spanish renaissance architecture, and Hillcrest, which is a hub of restaurants and cute boutiques just waiting to be explored!

Book Tour
One of the Side Streets in Little Italy
One of the Side Streets in Little Italy

23) Take the Driving Day Tour with GoCar Luxury

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

Looking for the best way to see everything San Diego has to offer, while also riding in style? Look no further than the Driving Day Tour with GoCar Luxury, where you’ll get to drive around in an upgraded Storytelling car equipped with GPS and informative narration.

Rent a Vanderhall Upgraded GoCar for the entire day and traverse locations both near and far - stay local in Balboa Park and the Gaslamp Quarter, or branch out to the beautiful beaches of Sunset Cliffs and Pacific Beach. Real adventures can also explore the scenic neighborhoods of Bankers Hill and Mission Hills.

However you want to explore the city, enjoy the freedom of these luxury, 2-person vehicles. Pick up your car from 3918 Mason St, San Diego, CA 92110, and spend the day visiting all the best points of interest.

Book Tour

24) See the Sights on a Self-Guided E-Bike Tour

San Diego Tours: 11 Best San Diego City & Bus Tours

If driving a GoCar or scooter doesn’t appeal to you, it might be more interesting to travel by E-bike. If so, take a Self-Guided E-Bike Tour, which comes in either 2-hour or 4-hour rental options. These tours are great for big groups as you can all rent bikes together, but they’re also a fun way to see the city as a family or even for couples.

E-bikes give you the freedom to stop and start the tour at your own leisure, so you can grab something tasty for lunch in Old Town or stop to walk through the Rose Garden at Balboa Park. Other notable stops on the tour include Bankers Hill and the San Diego Zoo.

Book Tour
Speed Up with Go Pass!
The Flagship Patriot Jet Boat
The Flagship Patriot Jet Boat
Looking for a fun ride out on the bay? Hop on The Flagship Patriot Jet Boat? Grab your Go Pass and enjoy tricks and turns performed by your skilled captain. You'll fly across the water in an open-air boat during your heart racing ride!
Buy Now
Local Tips
How much can you save by using the Go City San Diego pass?

The Go City San Diego pass is the perfect way to explore more attractions and activities that the area has to offer, all while being cost-efficient.

With the Go City San Diego pass, you can save up to 55% off admission fees at some of the area’s most popular attractions.

Want to save more? Use our exclusive discount code GVSD5OFF to save an extra 5%!

Reliable Local Tips for Exploring Little Italy Attractions

Want to have a true Italian experience without leaving the West Coast? Check out these useful tips for making the most out of your trip to Little Italy.

What are the Best Restaurants in Little Italy San Diego?

Home to dozens of choices, the best restaurants in Little Italy depend on what you’re looking for! Our pick for the best pizza is Artesanal Pizza at Filippi’s Pizza Grotto. The family-owned restaurant serves incredible pizza as well as traditional Italian sandwiches, pasta dishes, and salads.

If you’re after an authentic four-course meal, we love Davanti Enoteca. Enjoy a glass of wine along with a pasta dish, sandwich or seafood, chicken, beef, or vegetarian option plus dessert.

If you’d like a local favorite that’s a bit less known, try the Mona Lisa Market restaurant. It features traditional recipes passed down for generations.

If you’re looking for a restaurant that’s great for families or a couples night, consider the Herb & Wood restaurant. The food is rustic, and simple with an atmosphere that’s homey and charming.

Checkout the Theaters in San Diego’s Little Italy & Downtown San Diego

In addition to its incredible restaurants, Little Italy’s theaters offer another great way to get in touch with local culture. Check out live performances which are constantly rotating, or see a movie in a historic renovated cinema.

If dinner and a movie (or live performance) sounds like the perfect night out, know that two of San Diego’s premier theaters for live performances are only about a mile away! The Spreckels Theater in the Gaslamp Quarter and San Diego Civic Theater in Core-Columbia are an easy walk or ride from the heart of Little Italy!

Explore the Nearby Neighborhoods Downtown

Little Italy has a premier San Diego location that makes it perfect for a night out, a meal and a show, or even a family dinner!

Waterfront Park, the Embarcadero neighborhood and the San Diego Bay are just to Little Italy’s west with Amici Park, a local neighborhood green space complete with an amphitheater and dog park, just to the park’s east.

Further east you’ll find the neighborhoods of Bankers Hill, Cortez Hill and ultimately the museums, green spaces and family-friendly San Diego Zoo in Balboa Park. Just to Little Italy’s south you can walk or take a local rideshare to enjoy a show in Downtown San Diego’s Core-Columbia or the nightlife in the trendy Gaslamp Quarter.

Checkout our guide to the best things to do in Downtown San Diego and our guide to the best things to do in Balboa Park for tips about what to see and do in these incredible nearby neighborhoods!

Don’t Miss India Street

India Street cuts through the majority of Little Italy’s commercial zone, and many of the best restaurants in the neighborhood are located along it. If you’re looking for the best of the best but you don’t want to be too restrictive with your itinerary, consider walking along India Street and popping into a few of the local shops.

Popular Activities

San Diego Harbor Cruise
San Diego Harbor Cruise
$36 per person
Buy Now
The World Famous San Diego Zoo
The World Famous San Diego Zoo
Discounts Available
Learn More
GoCar: Downtown & Balboa Park
GoCar: Downtown & Balboa Park
$63 per person
Buy Now
LEGOLAND Hopper Ticket
LEGOLAND Hopper Ticket
$127 per person
Learn More
Featured Hotel
Wyndham San Diego Bayside
Exterior night view of Wyndham San Diego Bayside
Bayfront
Bayfront
Families
Families
Zoo
Zoo
3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars
Fancy yourself on the waterfront when you stay at Wyndham San Diego Bayside. The casual vibe, modern amenities, and great location will make a fan out of any guest.
Prices Starting at $135
Check Availability
Looking to Save on Tickets?
Save on Tickets
Explore all that San Diego has to offer & save up to 55% on attractions
This Month's Forecast
62°F / 76°F
Partly Cloudy in June
Jul
66°F / 81°F
Sunny in July
Aug
68°F / 83°F
Sunny in August
Sep
66°F / 82°F
Sunny in September
Tours & Adventures
San Diego Harbor Cruise
San Diego Harbor Cruise
$36 per person
Buy Now
The World Famous San Diego Zoo
The World Famous San Diego Zoo
Discounts Available
Learn More
Looking for Something Different?
More Best of Things to Do