San Diego's Most Walkable Neighborhoods

San Diego is really one big collection of many distinct towns, each with its own character. Some of the best are actually quite walkable and offer an eclectic atmosphere. Encintias boasts golf courses, beaches, boutiques, and seasonal festivals. Kensington offers a more artsy and historical district dating back to the early 1900's with individual style of homes and mom and pop shops. La Jolla is famous for its ocean air, fine dining, comedy clubs and of course the University California San Diego, but it also offers a phenominal walkable urban neighborhood right on the footsteps of the Pacific Ocean. Little Italy, one of the 8 boroughs of Downtown San Diego mirrors an antique Italian fisherman's village, set with a modern twist of a variety of specialty schools, academy's, as well as private and public schools. Finally, there is the neighborhood of North Park where the community association coordinates springtime concerts in the park, night art walk as well as a fantastic historical district to boot. There is no shortage of activities offered in each of these walkable neighborhoods, pick, choose and enjoy..


Encinitas is calling you! The city’s largest single industry, ornamental flowers will catch your heart as you inhale the essences while basking in the warmth and sea-side breeze of Encinitas. The five districts satisfy every fancy from the small beach side mix of business and residences to the golf courses and havens for the shopping-obsessed. Browse the art galleries and eclectic shops and restaurants or become involved in Olivenhain’s 4-H club. Celebrate Oktoberfest and the Poinsettia Festivals with your neighbors or teach engineering to little ones at the world’s largest rally of wooden bodied vehicles. The opportunities abound and await you and your loved ones. Encinitas boasts numerous public and private schools from the elementary level through to higher education. Focused on preserving their community’s way of life, the city maintains an Urban Forest Management Program, services for the elderly, dedication to parks and recreation, along with a commitment to safety. Encinitas is home to many notable scientists, business people, artists, writers, performers, and actors who are waiting to call you neighbor! Welcome home!


The home of the San Diego Historic Class 1Streetcars, Kensington is a unique and narrow peninsula protected by steep slopes on three sides with significant dedicated open space. Primarily owner-occupied single-family homes dot the winding, tree-lined streets and support a small five-block business district on Adams Avenue composed of repurposed original 1910 houses. Kensington is a close-knit pedestrian-oriented community where everyone knows everyone. Say hello to your neighbors during your after-dinner strolls or treat the family to one of the historic homes tours hosted by the Neighborhood Preservation Advocacy. The Edward C. Mann House, Saint John Residence, and the Wonder House of Stone are but a taste of the history Kensington offers. A community group for most every interest, your family will be engaged through involvement in their community and through the San Diego Unified School District. Immense parent involvement, dedicated staff, and the highest principal leadership rating, Franklin Elementary provides a great introduction to public education for your little ones complementing Hoover High School’s stellar record and student comments as a “place where your kid will feel safe.” Convenient to Escondido Freeway, Kensington is a yester-year neighborhood that your children will reminisce to their children.

La Jolla

Ah . . . Prospect Street: an upscale people-watcher’s dream-come-true, except for the distractions of the numerous one-of-a-kind boutiques and art galleries lining the streets. Spoil yourself while basking in “The Jewel City’s” mediterranean weather as you ponder the eclectic mix of dining choices: smell the ocean while seated on the Ocean Terrace at Zagat’s rated George’s at the Cove; allow your tastebuds to travel with authentic (and delicious) Korean and Japanese fare at Shabu Shabu Jinsang; or simply relax and take it all in at the extensive other cafes and restaurants you’ll meet during your sunny stroll through our charming Spanish-style architecture neighborhood. Just off the north end of Prospect, Sunny Jim’s Cave provides great views of sea lions basking in the sun, nesting native birds, gray whale watching, and picnic opportunities with the family while the kids safely swim at La Jolla Cove. Designated areas provide elegant high-rise office buildings, high-density housing, and high-end shopping malls; but expect to leave the office when you leave the office. Prospect Street is served by San Diego Unified School District public schools and boast the US Census Bureau’s highest rating for Education Climate Index. Our prep schools, diverse denominational churches at every turn, and vast community groups keep the family busy and engaged. La Jolla’s seven miles of curving coastline also provides myriad other educational opportunities including University of California San Diego, National University, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and the Salk Institute. La Jolla has been home to many notable scientists, business people, artists, writers, performers – and now, you! Welcome home!

Little Italy

Originally a predominately Italian fishing community, Little Italy has become a delicious mix of Italian restaurants, retail shops, art galleries and residential communities. A small and active community, low crime rates complement the many community festivals. Multiple public improvement and residential building projects are either under construction or scheduled, resulting in a more densely populated southern section of town and a quaint, intimate northern section. In addition to the Italian farmers market retailing fresh fish and baked goods, Little Italy also hosts the annual Little Italy Carnevale, a Venetian community open house offering vignettes of entertainment by the retail shops and restaurants. ArtWalk takes place in April and boasts over 120,000 visitors congregating to purchase the locally-produced arts. The sports-inclined are invited to watch the annual bicycle race with over 3,000 international competitors or have fun playing at September’s Labor Day Stickball Tournament! End the year on a festive note at the Little Italy Christmas Village and Tree-Lighting Event, leaving little mouths agape as they watch Santa ride through town on Little Italy Fire Engine Number 3! Back to basics, residents are served by numerous educational opportunities from public and private primary education facilities to preparatory academies, San Diego City College, and numerous specialized schools offering programs from business to medial, visual and performing arts. Little Italy has grown from a haven for the 1906 Great Quake survivors to a diverse yet still close-knit community that loves food, entertaining and socializing. It just doesn’t get any better!

North Park

Your summer evenings will be enchanted by music of the Bird Park Summer Concerts organized by the vibrant and active North Park Community Association. Your artistic tastes will further be fed by the Ray Street Arts District, the cultural epicenter home to many art galleries and studios often compared to New York City’s SoHo community. Join the more than 1,500 people who regularly take part in The Ray at Night Art Walk, San Diego’s largest and longest-running monthly community walk. Primarily a mix of architectural styles, North Park also boasts the Dryden Historical District comprised of turn-of-the century bungalows. In addition to convenience to I-805, North Park boasts substantial public bus service making access to University Avenue an easy ride. The pride in community of North Park residents is evident, contagious, and awaiting you!

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