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Exploring Shelter Island San Diego 2023

a body of water with a city in the background

Shelter Island sits placidly in San Diego Bay, a place full of hidden gems sometimes overshadowed by San Diego’s tremendous collection of vibrant, colorful neighborhoods. The island’s vibe, a 1.2-mile stretch of land created during world war II, is a nautical one, as it is one of the city’s principal boating centers. It also has tropical flourishes. Shelter Island is a fabulous place to visit, and it is replete with excellent hotels and resorts, renowned restaurants, public art displays, and tons of ways to spend your time. 

Things To Do

If you visit Shelter Island, San Diego, you’ll find lots to do. Shelter Island Drive is the major thoroughfare, and it is lined with attractions. Shoreline Park is a mile-long promenade that runs the length of the island, offering green space for picnicking and beautiful bay views. Besides the fishing pier that juts out into the bay, several pieces of outdoor art are installed throughout the park. 

Visitors and locals can roam the island, enjoying the artwork, the views, and the weather. You’ll see folks on bikes and skateboards, too. There are sailing schools, and you can even tour the harbor aboard the Stars & Stripes USA-11.

Where To Stay

a large body of water with a city in the background

There are several Shelter Island hotels and lodging accommodations for those who want to stay on the island. Some hotels are attached to marinas, and the inner harbor between the island and Point Loma is home to hundreds of boats.

Lodging accommodations on the island generally include access to heated swimming pools and exquisite views of the bay. Humphrey’s Half Moon Inn is a tropical retreat described as a hidden oasis. The Inn boasts Concerts by the bay, where international talent drops by to perform along the water at an intimate outdoor venue. The Kona Kai Resort and Spa has a private beach, a health club, and a marina-view swimming pool. 

Where To Dine

The Kona Kai also features one of the island’s many excellent restaurants and bars. The vessel is known for its locally sourced cuisine, outdoor seating, and 360-degree bar, which provides panoramic views of the bay.

While the Bali Hai restaurant offers Polynesian cuisine and is renowned for its Mai Tais and authentic Tiki decor from the South Pacific, The Blue Wave Bar and Grill and Fathom Bistro offer diners more casual fare. The Quarterdeck is known for its expansive selection of wines and cocktails, weekday happy hours, Taco Tuesdays, and Wine Wednesday specials.

Cultural Relevance

a view of a large body of water with a city in the background

San Diego is a community that embraces its cultural origins, and Shelter Island features several examples of this spirit brought to life. At Shoreline Park, you’ll find the Tunaman Memorial sculpture, among other outdoor art pieces. This iconic bronze sculpture commemorates the courage and hard work of the generations of tuna fishermen in San Diego. Before settling in this beautiful western hamlet, these fishermen came from many different nations to make their lives, including Japan, Italy, and Portugal.

The Yokohama Friendship Bell, a bell that sits within a splendid pagoda, was presented to San Diego by the citizens of Yokohama, which would become San Diego’s sister city. The bell marks the Centennial Celebration of relations between Japan and the United States. 

San Diego is known as America’s Finest City because of its spectacular climate, locals’ warmth, and all the cool stuff you can do there. Shelter Island exemplifies these characteristics as much as any other part of the city. Visit Shelter Island’s website for upcoming concerts and events, and book your tickets for this beautiful part of the world today.