North Park and South Park are two of San Diego’s most entertaining neighborhoods. Between micro-breweries, art academies, funky coffee shops, and chic clothing boutiques, there is something here for everyone. To make it even better, many of these great stops are within walking distance of each other. With a seemingly endless amount of activities here, you’ll have to make an effort to leave! Here are some fun things to do in North and South Park.
There a tons of places to shop 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 on at the corner 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, the list goes on and on. They even have a fun photo booth to snapshots near the cool wrap-around white couch.
North Park Farmer’s Market
Every Thursday, from 3-7:30 pm, 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 great, as well as the organic coffee tent. I like to do a bit of shopping here, getting some avocados and grapefruit as the produce is amazing. With 80 tents of vendors and farmers, you’re bound to stumble across something that catches your eye, or your nose!
For the cherry on top, your ears will be taking in the music from booths set up by local musicians.
Don’t worry about parking, as there is a multi-story, 340 parking spot garage right next to the market!
Verbatim Books – North Park
Verbatim Books is a fantastic bookstore on the cusp of North Park and South Park. The owner has a huge selection of used and rare books that are 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.
West Grove Collective – South Park
In South Park, West Grove Collective is my first choice. First Generation Irish-Chilean owner Anne, is just an absolute sweetheart. I purchased the book “The Artist’s Way,” here, later to find out that this book is Anne’s inspiration for the store. There is a great selection of wonderful books with beautiful art all over the walls and throughout the shop. If the book you’re looking for isn’t in stock, they will gladly order it for you and give you a call when it arrives. In addition to books, you’ll find chic clothes and artisanal jewelry. West Grove is located on Juniper Street, just across the street from Rebecca’s Coffee Shop, so go get a book, head over for a coffee, relax and read your new novel!
Rebecca’s Coffee House is a spacious coffee shop in South Park on the corner of Fern and Juniper. It’s a haven for people of all walks of life and a staple of South Park. This year marks their 25th year in the neighborhood. They have many flavors of coffee and tea from around the world, yerba mate, as well as kombucha on tap. It’s roomy with a few couches for reading and lounging. With plenty of tables and desks, both inside and outside, you can easily find a nice nook to get work done.
Brunch is on Saturdays and Sundays, where John Mayer inspired Eric Nelson plays music from 10am to noon (on Saturdays). Open mic night is a popular evening for and locals to come together and share ideas, listen to good music and enjoy great coffee. They even have a grand piano next to the stage. It’s open late every night so swing by and try a pastry, made in-house by Rebecca. Try the vegan banana mango muffin – you won’t’ be disappointed!
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 their 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 you in the beautiful sunshine. I’m more of a tea drinker, so I like to go for the Irish Cream tea.
If you’re looking for more spacious to spread out and get some work done, Young Hickory is great. Located on 30th Street north of University Avenue, Young Hickory has plenty of tables 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.
More Things to Do in North Park and South Park