So I arrived last night (easy direct flight with US Airways, although no inflight entertainment for a nearly 6 hour flight, what's up with that!) and took a cab to the hostel. I know, I should have taken the bus especially since I was checking into a hostel, lol, but baby steps :)
The hostel (booked through Airbnb) has a great location and I'm booked into a four person female dorm. The other ladies seem nice, one of which is a British lady around my age who is traveling for 3 years (makes my 6 months look really shabby, and I wonder how she is funding that). I got to the room last so have a top bunk, dam. Room is basic but fine, clean. Hostel staff are very friendly and there are even make your own pancakes for breakfast included. 4 bathrooms for 55 people, hum could be a challenge!
This morning I got up and went for a run on Harbour Ave. San Diego is stretched along the ocean and as I ran the fresh morning air was extremely pleasant, none of this East Coast humidity we are used to and I start to see why everyone constantly rates this city as having some of the best weather in the world.
After a quick shower (did not want to dawdle given bathroom to guest ratio) I went off to explore the city and walked up to Balboa Park in search of San Diego Zoo. Balboa is the nations largest urban cultural park and houses many of the cities museums. Given the fact I'm not in general a fan of museums I skipped these and wandered around the beautifully aromatic gardens and then went in search of the Zoo.
I'm happy I paid $46 to enter the Zoo, I did debate whether it would be an interesting experience for me (especially given the fact it is also now the school holidays,) but the Zoo truly is a world class attraction as advertised. I spent the whole afternoon wandering around the very well landscaped exhibits as the zoo is also a botanical garden and they even grow their own bamboo, they are also trying to grow coffee. The highlights for me were the baby panda and giraffe both born in captivity at the zoo in the last year. The zoo really did try to develop ones educational interest and social awareness at every opportunity and is a non profit organization.
Caught the bus back to the hostel and went to The Cheesecake Factory for dinner, well it would have been rude to decline since some fellow hostelers invited me along :) I know my Philly friends will give me some grief for that!
Thought I was in for a quiet evening as our little dorm was sound asleep by 10.30pm however we were woken up by the arrival of a fire engine and ambulance around 1:30pm to cart off one of the youngsters that had drunk too much. Remind me again why I booked a hostel?