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Hop-On An Old Town Trolley Tour For An Historic Look At San Diego

San Diego’s so jampacked with historical sights, architectural landmarks, and all-around postcard-perfect scenery that it can be overwhelming for visitors to decide what to do and where to go.

Here at the Sofia Hotel, we often recommend the Old Town Trolley Tours of San Diego for a wide-ranging, convenient, and fun survey of the city’s highlights. The company’s been guiding tourists from the Gaslamp Quarter to Coronado Island for more than 25 years. Whether it’s your first time in America’s Finest City or you’ve been here before, the hop-on, hop-off trolley circuit makes for a unique way to experience San Diego.

A History- and Scenery-Rich Route

The advantage of a hop-on, hop-off ticket (available as one- or two-day passes) is that you can exit the trolley at 11 stops—among them Old Town, Little Italy, and Balboa Park—sightsee at your leisure, and then catch the next trolley (they come approximately on the half-hour) to resume the guided tour.

Aboard the Old Town Trolley, conductors provide the historical lowdown as well as a fair share of funny anecdotes and asides about the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego Museum of Art, Petco Park, and other linchpins of our city’s story and geography. The first stop is Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, where you can hop off to admire some of the original adobe structures dating from the city’s foundational Mexican settlements around the site of the yet-older Spanish outpost of the Presidio.

Another trolley hub is the William Heath Davis House, another landmark of historical San Diego and a good jumping-off point for exploring the Gaslamp Quarter. On Coronado, you can explore the island’s shops and eateries, or wander down to one of the nation’s top-rated stretches of sand: Coronado Beach. The Balboa Park stop, meanwhile, gives you the opportunity to check out this beloved greenspace’s many museums or the legendary 100-acre San Diego Zoo.

Hopping the Trolley From the Sofia

Given our in-the-heart-of-it downtown location, you’re within easy walking distance of several of the Old Town Trolley Tours stops from the Sofia Hotel, including Horton Plaza, the William Heath Davis House, and Little Italy. So mix in some topnotch San Diego sightseeing while you’re enjoying our luxurious accommodations—we’re a historical landmark ourselves, after all—and take a fun, informative trolley tour around America’s Finest City!

Photo credit: Randy Robertson