North Park is one of San Diego’s most entertaining neighborhoods. There is something here for everyone between micro-breweries, art academies, funky coffee shops, and chic clothing boutiques. To make it even better, many of these great shops are within walking distance of each other. With a seemingly endless amount of fun things to do in North Park, you’ll have to make an effort to leave!
Where is North Park, San Diego?
North Park is an urban neighborhood in the Metro area of San Diego, just South East of Downtown San Diego. North Park has several sub-neighborhoods, such as Morley Field, Altadena, Burlingame, and others. These neighborhoods are sought after by people searching to buy a home in a walkable neighborhood of San Diego. Most of the homes in these neighborhoods are Craftsman Style Homes, Spanish Style Homes, Tudor Style homes, California Bungalows, and a few Modern Style homes are now being introduced by investor-builders that turn around and sell for a profit.
North Park Shops
There are tons of places to shop in North Park that are as diverse and unique as the neighborhood. Whether you are looking to get a new tattoo, a haircut, camera equipment, graphic design work, a real estate office, or vintage clothing, North Park has this and a lot more. There is no need to go to the mall anymore when you can find everything you need in North Park. Hunt and Gather is an exciting shop with all kinds of vibrant clothes, funky sunglasses, and funky accessories. Pick up a few items, and you’ll feel like a million bucks! Also, cross the street is Rae Boutique, if you’re feeling a little shopping spree. Located at the corner of University Ave and Granada, It’s within walking distance of Pigment, a fantastic shop with everything you can think of to turn your home into a warm, welcoming sanctuary. Indoor and outdoor furniture, pretty planter boxes, candles, planter boxes, and the list go on. They even have a fun photo booth to snapshots near the cool wrap-around white couch.
North Park Art Festival
It is a great local North Park tradition that takes place every year. Come and enjoy live music along with local food and live street art demonstrations. Some of the best things in life are FREE, which is one of them, so don’t miss out. San Diego’s hippest neighborhood brings you entertainment day and night on May 11th from 11 am through 10 pm. If you want to engage in the Beer Block Tasting, get your tickets here.
North Park Farmer’s Market
From 3-7:30 pm, every Thursday is the farmers market on North Park Way, beginning at 30th Street and extending as far as Utah Street. There you’ll find vendor booths ranging from Hawaiian Food to locally produced honey. The Mediterranean food is great, as well as the organic coffee tent. I like to do a bit of shopping here, getting some avocados and grapefruit. The produce is simply amazing. With 80 tents of vendors and farmers, you’re bound to stumble across something that catches your eye or your nose!
Enjoy the music coming from the booths set up by local musicians while you shop for your produce and amazing cooked food displayed throughout the vendors.
Don’t worry about parking, as there is a multi-story, 340 parking spot garage right next to the market!
Book Stores in North Park
Verbatim Books is a fantastic bookstore in North Park. The owner has a huge selection of used and rare books organized very well and priced to sell. On the shelves, you’ll find books from over 60 different local writers. I recently purchased “Old Gods Almost Dead,” a very interesting biography on the Rolling Stones, for just 8 dollars. In the back, there is a mini-library with small tables for your kids to read and play while you’re browsing or trading in your old books for new ones.
Coffee Shops in North Park and South Park
Communal Coffee is based out of a vintage trailer in South Park on Fern Street. It’s a haven for people of all walks of life and has quickly become one of South Park’s hot spots for a quick bite and a cup of espresso coffee.
Not too far from Rebecca’s is Cafe Madeleine, a French Cafe with scrumptious crepes and classic European espresso. There are ham, apple, and bleu cheese crepe to die for! Both indoor and outdoor and a good wifi connection gives you plenty of choices whether you want to relax and chat or focus and work. They also have a location on El Cajon Blvd.
Dark Horse Coffee is a fresh coffee shop in North Park that roasts its coffee beans in-house daily. It’s definitely on the cozier side, with only 4 small tables inside, but more than enough room for a date! Their cold brew coffee is delicious, so grab a cup to go to keep you cool in the beautiful sunshine. I’m more of a tea drinker, so I like to go for the Irish Cream tea.
Young Hickory is great if you’re looking for more space to spread out and get some work done. Located on 30th Street north of University Avenue, Young Hickory has plenty of table benches to set up your laptop, with a sufficient amount of outlets to keep you charged up. The huge windows are open to a street to let in the lovely California breeze. With refreshing breakfast choices, yummy bagels, delicious lunch sandwiches, and good coffee, tons of craft beer, you can’t go wrong at Young Hickory.
Best Breweries in North Park
In the last several years, craft beer has become the hot new thing in every part of the country and breweries in North Park have been popping up everywhere. Local brews can be found throughout some of the best local restaurants and watering holes in the neighborhood. Some restaurants with great choices include the Waypoint Public, URBN Coal Fired Pizza; The Brewers Association has data which recently shows an increase of 18% in volume with small and independent craft brewing and 22% in sales. It seems like more and more people are learning and searching for places that provide an array of craft beer selections. If you prefer to go out for some craft beer tasting, check out Mike Hess Brewing–North Park or Thorn Street Brewery for a great local neighborhood experience with high-quality beer that is innovative.
More Things to Do in North Park and South Park