San Diego

San Diego is the final destination of our Panama Canal Cruise. Instead of going right from the pier to the airport, consider staying night or more in San Diego and enjoying what this wonderful city has to offer.

The map, below, shows the location of the pier and some of the top rated attractions.

Top Attractions

San Diego has so many things to see and do that it would be way beyond the scope of this article to list them all. I have shown some of the most popular attractions with those nearest the pier listed first.

The Throttle Board in one of the USS Midway's engine rooms

The Throttle Board in one of the USS Midway's engine rooms

USS Midway Museum – The US Midway aircraft carrier is on permanent display just a 1000 feet down the street from the cruise ship pier. The 60 exhibits range from the crew’s sleeping quarters to a massive galley, engine room, the ship’s jail, officer’s country, post office, machine shops, and pilots’ ready rooms, as well as primary flight control and the bridge high in the island over the flight deck. The flight deck and hanger feature 25 restored aircraft.

The Celebrity Mercury as seen through the rigging of the HMS Surprise

Maritime Museum – The Maritime Museum of San Diego is located a quarter mile from the cruise ship pier. The museum has nine ships on permanent display including the Star of India, the oldest iron hulled merchant ship still afloat; the HMS Surprise, used in the filming of Master and Commander; and a Soviet diesel-electric submarine.

Seaport Village – Seaport Village is located about half a mile from the cruise ship pier. This waterfront shopping and dining area is a great place to pick up that last souvenir from your trip.

San Diego Zoo – Located 2.5 miles from the cruise ship pier. This is probably the best and most famous zoo in the world. This 107 acre zoo has over 800 species including pandas, polar bears, and elephants.

Gaslamp Quarter – This historic district contains 94 historic buildings from the late 1800s. The restored buildings contain restaurants, shops, and nightclubs. This neighborhood is very active at night.

Old Town San Diego Historic Park – Old Town San Diego State Historic Park commemerates the history of  San Diego during  periods of 1821 to 1872.  The park contains adobe homes and historic buildings, several of which are open to the public from 10 – 5.

Seaworld – Located 6 miles from the cruise ship pier. Seaworld is a 22 acre, sea mammal theme park with six orcas housed in a 7 million gallon Shamu Stadium aquarium. Other sea mammals include dolphins, walruses, pilot whales, and beluga whales. Seaworld also features several theme park type rides.

Point Loma – Cabrillo National Monument on the south end of Point Loma offers a view of San Diego’s harbor and skyline, as well as Coronado and Naval Air Station North Island.  Cabrillo National Monument is 9 miles from the cruise ship pier.


The May weather in San Diego is cool and humid with an average high of 70 F and 71% humidity. The average low is 60 F. There is measurable rainfall approximately 25% of the days this time of year.

At 61 F, the ocean temperature is the coldest of the whole cruise.

Here is the real-time weather for the San Diego Airport.
Click for San Diego, California Forecast

Port Information

In this author’s opinion, San Diego is the best cruising home port in the United States.

Map – Download and print out these free maps to take on the cruise.

Greater San Diego from Moon San Diego

Downtown San Diego from Moon San Diego

San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park from Moon San Diego

Point Loma area from Moon San Diego

Mission Bay area from Moon San Diego


3 Responses to “San Diego”

  1. Melinda Turner December 27, 2010 at 8:41 am #

    Hi…I’m really enjoying your blog…thank you!! My family and I will be on the Celebrity Century from April 29, 2011 – May 14, 2011 on the exact same itinerary as your cruise. Can you share with me what excursions you will be doing for your whole cruise. We haven’t booked any yet but are now starting our research. We would be interested in ship excursions as well as private ones. If you have any suggestions for me that would be greatly appreciated. My dad and mother are going along with me and my fiance. My dad is 75 and my mother is 78. My mother is in a wheelchair so if you know of any excursions that are accessible I would really love to hear about them. Thank you so much and I’m looking forward to hearing from you!!!


    • mercruiser December 27, 2010 at 11:07 pm #

      I’m glad to hear you like the blog. I’m busy right now with family visiting for the holidays. So I’ll post a response on my excursion plans in a couple of days once things slow down.


  1. San Diego, California « Millennium Panama Canal - December 4, 2010

    […] San Diego […]

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