Sitting Pretty In The Big City – San Diego, CA
So we’ve gone through a bit of transformation which thankfully, as RVers and nomads, we are very good at doing. Departing our expansive natural digs in Borrego Springs for an asphalt parking lot in San Diego has been….well…an exercise in mental and physical adaptation. We arrived on Wednesday dusty (and no doubt smelly) from the desert and slotted back into civilization and two days of solid rain in San Diego. The hookups were a boon, as were the hot showers (although they may have benefitted our neighbors more than anything else), but the rain and the density of people took a bit of getting used to.
We’re staying for a month in Mission Bay RV Resort which I’ve always described as a so-so park in an awesome location. It’s one of the two parks we prefer (the other being Santee Lakes) when we’re in the area. With winter low-season the park is less than half full and if you add in the decent monthly rates and the location (right by the water) it’s a pretty sweet deal. I totally dig being able to walk out the RV gate to the sound of lapping water and the sweet, salty smell of the bay. Plus there are alot of very good reasons to snowbird in San Diego.
Despite all this it’s always weird being back in a “big city” especially since we’ve spent the majority of the last 9 months in state parks or smaller areas. I mean we started our RVing adventures in San Diego three years ago and I really do love this town, but the more time I spend in the boonies the more my longings take me away from my city-roots and back towards my nature-roots. But don’t think I’m complaining….oh no…it’s just a change is all and I am more than happy to cozy up in the RV for a month in the city. We’re here for the cats (the $8,000 cats, in case you missed the story last year), some rather exciting RV mods (more to come on this…), Christmas socializing (there are no less than 6 RV couples we know in the area) and enjoying all the food, sights, sounds and beaches of San Diego. Oh, and the young surfing dudes add a nice little extra visual bonus to the whole package.
Although we’ve only been here a few days we’re already well into our month of activities. The cats have already had their first vet appointment ($$$ aaargh!), we’ve taken Polly multiple times to romp around on nearby Fiesta Island (my absolute top pick of best beach-spots to take dogs in San Diego), been shopping at the Farmer’s Market (there is one every single day somewhere in this town), done a few excellent bike rides around the extensive trails in Mission Bay and met-up with our RV buddies Alex & Ellen who’ve slotted into the spot behind us.
We’ll be making the most of our month here before we (most likely) head back into the boonies….jello RV plans ya know. And of course I’ll be keeping you up to date on our various socializing dates and RV mods, assuming we don’t mess them up too much. In the meantime I’ll be hoping for sunny days, and sitting pretty in the big city.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in this blog post may be affiliate links, so, if you click on the link and make a purchase, I will receive a commission. Amazon, the Amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and the AmazonSupply logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. WheelingIt is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
We LOooVE Comments, So Please Do
I so appreciate your park reviews as you have been spot on every time. We stayed at Mission Bay and the LOCATION as you said was fantastic. I loved our time there! Have fun enjoying your friends and the city!
I’m glad you enjoyed this RV park for the same reasons we do. Like you said, really all about location here ‘coz the park itself is not much to write home about. Still for a big city it’s all about location, location, location…can’t beat it!
We plan to spend some time at Mission Bay RV Resort later this winter. We travel in a 27 ft Class C. We carry bicycles but do not tow a vehicle. Could we see San Diego from the Resort using public transportation or would you recommend that we rent a car for our stay?
I have to admit I’m not too familiar with San Diego public transportation, having always owned a car in this town.
With a bike I know you’ll be able to explore Mission Bay, Ocean Beach, Sea World and Pacific Beach right from the RV park. In fact the bike path to Ocean Beach is really enjoyable (we just did it yesterday). Lots to see and do in this area.
The San Diego trolley will take you a bunch of interesting places (from downtown to Mission San Diego all the way to Santee), but it doesn’t stop at Mission Bay so you’d have to take a bus somewhere to catch it. Can’t tell you off-hand how easy this would be, but I’d look into this one and decide based on that. If you can easily catch the trolley I would say public transportation is fine. If you can’t you may want to rent a car. You’d certainly cover more area with a car. Here’s more info:
Sorry I couldn’t be more help!
Lee and Shelia says
Glad all is safe and sound and your ready for a month with FULL hook ups… Are you going to make it to Quartzite? We are not going to make it there. We sold our RV and will be looking for something much smaller next year….. We didn’t want to but our RV was way to big for us at this time.
Sometimes those full hookups sure do come in handy. I still can’t help turning off the water and lights evertime I use them though LOL.
So you guys are downsizing….how exciting! Will definitely be interested to hear what you end up with.
Quartzsite is still in the jello plans for us. Not 100% sure, but it’s looking likely.
The Lowe's RV Adventures says
I agree it is truly an exercise in mental and physical adaptation.. from enjoying the wild and serene side of life to the craziness of civilization. We experienced the same feelings every now and then when we have to do a pit stop in civilization.
We were doused with heavy rains here in Cave Creek, AZ as well, it must be the same system that passed SD.
I think that big storm system dumped all over southern CA and AZ. I’ve been seeing pics of mountains with snow on them all over the southern areas. Hope it’s staying warm where you are.
The Lowe's RV Adventures says
We are trying to keep warm but has not happen yet.
I just noticed it, thank you for including us in your blogroll. Appreciate it.
Those scenes from camp don’t look too citified.
Yeah, the big draw to this RV park is location -> literally right by the bay/water so we can just hop on the bikes or walk out the gate and we’ve got some nice, natural scenery. But the park itself is really just a big ‘ol parking lot. Asphalt with a few trees. I’m OK w/ the compromise, but I probably won’t be taking too many “scenic” pics of our actual RV spot 🙂
Amanda Watson says
Yay! After traveling north of you for many months now it looks like we are finally about to catch up and actually meet our favorite inspirational travelers in person! We’ll be arriving at Mission Bay this Thursday or Friday and staying for a week. Would love to meet up 🙂
Oh yea!!!!! Would definitely love to meet-up. Come by and say “hi” when you get here.
Looking forward to seeing you guys later this week. We’re supposed to be in site 139 on Thursday.
I totally get your mixed feelings about going from abundant nature to big city!
Cool! See ya later.
Love the location and such lovely sunsets!
It’s not quite as wild and wonderful as your OR coast, but it will do 🙂 I do enjoy your sunset shots on your blog.
Oh, I don’t know… that last one gave me goose bumps. Nothing quite like a sunset with reflections.
Your photos make me miss waterfront camping!
Polly is definitely happy we’re near water again. She goes for a full swim everyday….lots of sand and wet in the RV now haha
I grew up in San Diego many years ago and I recall when Fiesta Island was just a spit of sandy soil dredged up from the bay & before Mission Bay RV Park even existed. Back then free overnight “camping” was allowed on that island and even encouraged. There were concrete fire rings all along what I remember being a wider sandy “beach” and the then unpaved road (about where your car looks to be parked). Dad loved the night fishing by Coleman lantern and “our” bay was alive with sea urchins, star fish, huge pelicans and all kinds of fish. I loved snorkeling and sailing my Sunfish in the summer. For a kid it was paradise. When my parents got their first motorhome, a 20′ Explorer, it felt luxurious to park at that waters edge and the spot was totally free. We didn’t call it boondocking of course but that’s what it was. Then the RV park was built. The new owners didn’t like looking at the nightly bonfires coming from all those free campers just across the water from their new and costly resort. So to keep the riff-raff out (and protect their profits) the owners successfully lobbied the city council to outlaw one of our favorite free camping places. I’ll never forgive them for taking it away. Going back to that time sure would be fun!
AWESOME story. Thanks so much for sharing it. I had no idea Fiesta was once completely open like that. The island still allows boondocking, but only during the day (4am to 10pm) so there are regular rigs there, but no overnighting anymore. And the city is trying to move to more development and even more restrictions (which I really hope never pass). I would have loved to be in San Diego back in the day!
Karen Phillips says
Young surfing dudes…sign me up …Nina, you bad girl :-).
We are starting fulltiming hopefully in April or May. I want to do dispersed camping as well as campgrounds but hubby is afraid of getting stuck. We will have a 28′ Airstream and a Dodge Ram 2500 2WD. Will there be places for us to go without fear of getting stuck if we are careful? BadKat New Orleans
Congrats on your upcoming fulltiming! Most definitely there will be spots. Lots of the desert out west is very hard-packed and easy to boondock. Our rig is 33,000 lbs and we manage to find spots, so I have no doubt you will too. The key is simply to take your time exploring the area, and scope out the spots before you take in the rig.
Have you been to the site of the Panama California Exposition? If not, it’s worth a look. There are enormous fig trees, the buildings are beautiful and there is much to look at. There is a model railroad museum there. I am not a fan of the model railroad, but I thoroughly enjoyed our visit. The detail and stories about the railroads they’ve modeled are really interesting.