Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Hillcrest Farmer's Market and MB

San Diego Metro KOA

Chula Vista, CA

January 11, 2022

Sundays in San Diego are for going to Hillcrest Farmer's Market.  I don't really care if we need anything or not, it's just a fun place to go. What started in 1997 with 27 vendors has grown to become San Diego's largest market with 150+ canopies filled with a huge variety of things to sell.  I'm hungry the moment I step out of the jeep.  The air is a plethora (I love that word !) of mouthwatering smells...chicken grilling, salmon smoking on wooden planks, and a variety of internationally cuisines being prepared. 

And if you are thirsty, no problem.  I've never seen so many different kinds of coffees, teas, juices and smoothies to choose from.   

Fresh fish, fresh eggs, fresh baked breads, and fresh cut flowers are plentiful.  

Colorful and in season veggies, fruits, berries, and mushrooms are abundant.  

There is a nice variety of potted plants with so many choices of succulents, herbs, fruit trees and hanging baskets.  

The choices for cheeses, oils, nuts, sauces, pastas, dips, etc. seem endless.  And if that is not enough, it's fun to browse the many artisans selling unique and beautiful crafted items like tunics made with Italian linen, French brocade table- cloths, original art pieces, wooden utensils and serving bowls, and knives just to name a few.


Does anyone remember macrame?  In the 70s it was "hip" to macrame.  I made my share of plant hangers like the ones in the photo and even a pocketbook or two.  Heads up, macrame might be making a comeback.  

There aren't many places I can think of where you can get breakfast, groceries, pretty or useful things for the house, something new to wear and lunch (or dinner) to take home all in one stop.  For me,  Hillcrest FM is all about the goods...Little Italy FM is all about the city.  Each is unique and both are tons of fun.

Mission Beach or MB as the locals refer to it, was yesterdays fun.  While Ronnie and Carol ride their bikes for miles,  Joe and I walk a few miles.  We set a time and all meet for lunch afterwards.  MB is San Diego's "lively take on the classic boardwalk".  

The almost two mile paved, two-lane, walk is between the condos/houses and the wall you see in the photo above.  It is always a flurry of bikers, skaters and skate boarders.  We prefer this...

There were not many people enjoying this gorgeous morning. And the only birds we noticed were Willets and Gulls that were very busy and enjoying breakfast.   

There are lots of little side walks lined with small homes that  give folks access to the beach.  My favorite is Island Court which connects Mission Blvd to the boardwalk and ocean.  

Island Court...the walk we take from the beach to meet Ronnie and Carol.

For several years, Luigi's has been our go-to place for lunch at MB. There is inside or patio sitting and they serve up icy cold brews, and yummy pizza by the pie or by the slice AND, the company is awesome !

Belmont Park is also located at MB.  It is home to the Giant Dipper...a wooden roller coaster built in 1925.  After peaking in the 30s, the park and the coaster had their share of financial woes.  

When it finally closed in 1976, a group of concerned citizens formed a committee to restore the coaster and bring it back to life.  Three years and $2 million later, the Giant Dipper stands as an icon and can be enjoyed by many.  It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987.

It stands 75 ' tall with a max speed of 48 mph.  It's noted for sharp curves and big dips.  One of these nights, I really want to ride it. Coasters are much more fun at night don't you think?  I always loved the wooden coaster at Miracle Strip Park in Panama City Beach, FL!

Today was spent amongst the rarest pine species in the United States...more on that later.  Until then, 




  1. One of these days I would love to live where produce is available year round--probably not going to happen living with Mike! :) :) Lovely photos!

    1. Thank you! Me too Janna...there is always a great variety here. I’m not sure if I could eat purple and orange broccoli even though I was told it tastes just like the green. 🤪

  2. I agree the Hillcrest market is the best of the local markets!
    Great pictures of your walk along Mission Beach.

    1. Thank you Jeff...the market and the beach are two of my favorite things !

  3. That FM made me drool!! I love a decent FM and fresh produce. Those bowls are so pretty. Lovely photos of the water and birds.