San Diego – The Real California Dream?


Nathan Ziebart

When I travelled to California two summers ago, I went with expectations of Los Angeles being a place “larger than life” where celebrities are around every corner, and the weather is always perfect. This is not so. Upon arriving in LA, I discovered that this world-renowned city was hardly as breath-taking and exciting as everyone makes it out to be. Instead of seeing celebrities all over the city, there was an enormous amount of homeless people. The scene can be likened to Vancouver’s East Hastings, just with a lot more hair colouring. As for the weather, while the sun was out every day, the supposedly blue sky was dyed grey with pollution. On top of that, most streets were littered with garbage and tagged with graffiti, making the “City of Angels” seemed like quite the opposite.

After a week in LA, I travelled down to San Diego. My first impression of the city was much better than in LA: the streets were cleaner, the beaches were amazing, and the palm trees actually looked real. San Diego had far less pollution than LA, and the temperature was slightly warmer. One of the main differences between the two cities was the quality of the beaches. In LA the water was dark and dirty, and the beaches were made more of mud than sand, San Diego was the complete opposite. The water was clear, blue and the beaches contained soft golden sand. The only downside was that the sand was extremely hot.

So after my trip, I concluded–and still think that San Diego–and not LA, is the real California dream.