Beer Travel: A Guide to San Diego’s “Hops Highway”

San Diego’s “Hops Highway,” an area along Highway 78 in North County, offers more breweries per capita than Bavaria, Germany. While the location got its name for the two dozen breweries, it’s also home to several other unique attractions.

Beer: Perhaps the most famous of the breweries is Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens, a top-10 craft brewery in the United States. Other notable breweries include Rip Current Brewing, Port Brewing Co./The Lost Abbey, and Pizza Port Brewing Company. All have won awards from various craft brewing competitions.

Animals: The San Diego Zoo Safari Park gives guests the chance to experience free-roaming animals native to Asia and Africa on a 1,800-acre reserve. The Oasis Camel Dairy is the first of its kind in the U.S.. Here, guests can ride camels and purchase camel milk lotions, soaps, and even chocolate.

History: The San Pasqual Battlefield State Historic Park honors those who fought in the Mexican-American War in 1846. Battle Day, held yearly on December 4, is a reenactment with children’s activities, music, and entertainment. Also in the San Pasqual Valley is the San Diego Archaeological Center, where visitors can learn about cultural artifacts found throughout the San Diego region. 

Natural Wonders: Covering 14 acres, the Alta Vista Botanical Gargens offers garden trails, exotic plants, ponds, herb gardens, an interactive Bugs, Birds, & Butterflies Children’s Garden, and Mediterranean garden complete with a labyrinth. 

Entertainment: Located next to the Botanical Gardens is the outdoor Moonlight Amphitheatre, which offers Broadway musicals and a full pit orchestra.