Little Italy is one of San Diego’s most charming and historic neighborhoods!
San Diego’s Little Italy started out as a humble fishing community with predominantly Italian residents. It has now grown into the most quintessential San Diego neighborhood. Our not-so-little Little Italy covers more than 48 square blocks, making it the largest Little Italy in the country! You’ll find some of the most cuisines here, from celebrity chef restaurants to old-school favorites. As if that weren’t enough, San Diego’s Little Italy is ranked the best Little Italy in the country! So, please do us a favor and explore this lovely neighborhood! Oh, and you can’t leave without gelato! YUM!
Caffe Italia is a lovely and busy spot in the heart of Little Italy. It’s a family-owned cafe popular among locals and tourists alike. They have a fantastic espresso to start your day! You can also get great gelato and breakfast paninis.
Location: 1704 India Street
Little Italy Summer Film Festival
Little Italy is one of San Diego’s most iconic neighborhoods and a great spot to spend a summer day. Each year, the LittleItaly Association teams up with Cinema Little Italy to show fantastic Italian films at the Amici Park Amphitheater. The Festivals start on July 17 and runs through September 18! Admission is FREE, but $10 donations are accepted at the door. Screenings are on every Saturday night, so make sure to pack some snacks and a cozy blanket and enjoy the show! Doors open at 7:30 pm and the films start at 8 pm.
Location: Amici Park Amphitheater, 1660 Union St, San Diego
Amici House and Amici Park
The Amici House is a Little Italy gem! This historic building was once the home of the Giacalone family. It was located between India St and Columbia St; but was moved to make room for Piazza della Famiglia in 2014. Antonio Giacalone was one of the best fishermen in the 1920s and 1930s, and the community nicknamed him “Cadorna,” aka the “general” of the neighborhood. Today the Amici House is home to the Convivio Society for Italian Humanities. This non-profit organization promotes Italian art, culture, and heritage in San Diego. This is a perfect spot to learn all about the history of San Diego’s thriving Italian community.
Location: 250 W Date St.
Wicked Maine Lobster has the most delicious lobster rolls at Little Italy Food Hall. This mouthwatering treat is the ideal snack (or meal!) to hold you over as you explore the lovely Little Italy streets.
Location: 2820 Historic Decatur Rd
Little Italy Mercato
The Little Italy Mercato Farmers’ Market is a fantastic year-round outing idea. You can swing by every Saturday from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm and every Wednesday from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm. The Saturday takes up six blocks, making it San Diego’s largest market! You’ll find farm fresh produce, nuts, and honey, as well as more delicious goods from California farmers. This is also a great spot to find unique artisan goods which make great gifts.
Location: 600 W Date St
Dinner and Drinks
Shibuya Nights is a stunning Japanese-inspired spot serving up vibrant sushi and delicious drinks. Their cherry blossom and graphic decor set the mood for a fun and memorable evening. They recently opened and have a fantastic Monday 12-dollar sushi roll deal! They don’t take reservations, so be sure to get there early. They open every night (except Sundays) at 6:00 pm.
Location: 1953 India St Level 2
During these sunny summer days, there’s nothing quite like gelato! Milkissimo gelato is an excellent small gelato shop run by the very popular owner Klaudio. His small business is known for its friendly service and excellent quality! You should try their Charcoal flavor.
Location: 1640 Camino Del Rio
Pizza in Little Italy is a no-brainer, and Landini’s is a must-visit! On any given day, they have a massive line outside the door which is always a great sign! You can either get a whole pizza or by the slice, which makes for a great lunch on-the-go option. Landini’s is also one of the few places in Little Italy that serves food late. They are open until 2 am on Fridays and Saturdays!
Location: 1827 India Street, San Diego
Featured image: Shutterstock