Robert Paulson


Senior DevOps Engineer at Orca, LLC

you're not your job you're not how much money you have you're not the car you drive you're not the contents of your wallet you're not the opinions of your company and neither is this site

17 July 2020

San Diego

by Robert Paulson

I spent too much time in San Diego as a teenager. The downside of that was being a teenager, though the upside was finding all the inconspicuous sights.

A buddy of mine moved there, so here’s a list of places to see, things to do.

Breweries & Bars

The Dog

Fantastic hole-in-the-wall pub with free pool. The manager is a great friend of mine - tip him well!

Aero Club Bar

Historic bar near the San Diego airport. Used to have pool, but not the last time I was there.

Karl Strauss Brewing Company Tasting Room

Definitely one of my favourite tasting rooms by Karl Strauss! Also, check out the restaurant chain run by the same folks.

Mission Brewery

Popular brewery tasting room.

Mother Earth Brewing Company

Brewery that tastes good.



Best Russian restaurant I’ve found on the west coast so far. Back when I came here, they took only cash and didn’t have a liquor license - now it’s a full-fledged restaurant with everything you’d expect.

Karl Strauss Brewing Company Restaurants

Fantastic chain of restaurants (there are quite a few beside this one) run by Karl Strauss Brewing Company. Also, visit their tasting room!

Board and Brew

An awesome sandwich shop that by now expanded its chain as far as LA. This is the original one, though surprisingly is one of the few that doesn’t serve beer, so you may want to check out of the one in Encinitas.


The only thing I ever go here for are fish tacos. Ask for their hot sauce and sit outside overlooking the historic race track.

Regents Pizzeria

Some of the best pizza. They used to be absolutely tiny and hosted 2600 meetings.

Continent Deli

Great Russian foods store!


Tasty brunch place!

Enoteca Adriano

Good Italian food I’ve been to a couple times.

Davanti Enoteca

I’ve been here for spritzes and appetizers once - was good!

Coffee & Tea Collective

Good coffee!


Stereo Unlimited

A huge music store: they have four or five rooms full of vinyls, several rooms of home theatres and know their craft well!

Poway Motorcycle

No one ever takes their bikes to shops, but if you ever ride down to San Diego at night in the rain and realize your tire shows wire at the same time as you blow through the rear caliper and leak all your brake fluid onto the tire - go here. They’re fantastic dudes and are cheap.

North Coast Photographic Services

Extremely professional photo services shop. If you still shoot film, this place is pricey but are the best in the area.

Ballast Point - Home Brew Mart

Ballast point is a brewery that runs this shop for homebrew equipment! Definitely bought plenty of stuff here back in the day.


Cardiff Beach

Not a lot of people know about it, and even less can find parking here - makes it for a perfect spot to come to on a motorcycle. Park right on the highway and don’t pay fees!

Black’s Beach

Nude beach that’s pretty hard to get to.


International Friendship Park

A park on the border with Mexico. Far to drive to but absolutely worth it.

Don’t pick up hitchhikers probably.

Del Mar Airport viewpoint

Del Mar used to have both an airport and a train stop - the former no longer exists, the latter is still there but closed. Linked spot is a neat viewpoint on where the airport used to be.

Pirate Caves

Somewhere in Ocean Beach there used to be an extensive network of caves said to have been used by smugglers back in the day. It’s been filled with concrete at least twice, and last I checked - they’re still shut. Contact me if you want the exact location.

Mushroom Caves

Really cool caves in Solana Beach that can be easily accessed via a trail. I’ve climbed some dangerous slopes there that I get chills from.

Top Gun House

The house of that lady in Top Gun is in Oceanside! Must’ve been a fun ride all the way from Miramar.

Oh, they’ve moved it recently. They moved a building. Amazing.

Palomar Mountain Observatory

Palomar has a bunch of camping, hikes and an observatory that used to be state of the art.


Julian is yet another nearby mountain with even more hikes, but also famous apple pies and a downtime with lots of edibles. This used to be a mining hotspot, so seek abandoned mines.