San Diego: The scenic drive you shouldn't miss

*KIa Motors USA invited us to #TheNewKia event in San Diego, in order to review their fleet of EcoDynamic cars.

Why were we in San Diego in the first place?

To test drive Kia's new fleet of ecodynamic cars alongside a group of savvy car enthusiasts!

Up until then, my only exposure to an electric car was a Prius. 

I was never impressed by the Prius design, so getting to drive the new, Kia Niro hybrid (runs on gas/electric) was pretty lavish compared to my earlier Prius experience. The Niro felt sporty and accelerated quickly, and the only way I knew it was a hybrid car was because of the handy energy flow screen on the dash.

IMG_0018.JPG

Kia has bragging rights.

They're fun to drive AND (at 50 MPG) economical...because we shouldn't have to sacrifice one thing for the other, right?! Kia seems to have figured out how to deliver both, but that's not surprising.

Kia has risen from the ash like a Phoenix, ranking #1 in initial quality, #1 in non-luxury vehicle satisfaction, and #1 in owner satisfaction. And they keep wow'ing me. Have you seen the 2018 Stinger?? (Jaw dropping.)

 San Diego sites, Photo courtesy: Cristen from  The Naptime Reviewer

San Diego sites, Photo courtesy: Cristen from The Naptime Reviewer

The driving experience

At this event, Kia hosted a scenic sights tour of San Diego.

They sent all of us to test drive their cars through beautiful San Diego to see the sights that make this southern California, slice of heaven interesting. I met some of the most creative people at this event, so I figured their perspective of the scenic sites of San Diego would definitely impress you. If you're ever in San Diego, this is a great scenic loop to follow (as you can see from their images throughout the post!). It makes for picturesque photo ops and striking historic stops.

The Scenic Drive Through the Eyes of Car Enthusiasts

 Take the bridge over to Coronado Island. Photo: ThoseCrazyNelsons

Take the bridge over to Coronado Island. Photo: ThoseCrazyNelsons

Begin on Coronado Island.

1. See Hotel Del Coronado, made famous as the setting of Marilyn Monroe's movie "Some Like It Hot", this historic hotel should be explored by foot. Stop by and have a cup of tea seaside. To save money on parking, park long the coast line and avoid the city parking garages and meters.

2. Head over the bridge back into downtown to see USS Midway Museum. Don't miss the famous statue of the sailor kissing the girl near there is. Great photo ops!

 Iconic statue. Photo:  Jamie Dorobek  

Iconic statue. Photo: Jamie Dorobek 

 USS Midway, Photo courtesy,  OC Mom Blog  

USS Midway, Photo courtesy, OC Mom Blog 

3. Then head a few streets over to Balboa Park. From gardens to various museums, this 1200-acre park in the middle of a concrete jungle is striking and impressive.

4.  Head north to Mission Bisilica de Alcala, the state's first and still-active mission. As soon as you set your sights on the church building, you will know why it was included on the scenic route.

Finish at Old Pt. Loma Lighthouse.

 Pt Loma Lighthouse, Photo courtesy,  OC Mom Blog

Pt Loma Lighthouse, Photo courtesy, OC Mom Blog

With tide pools to explore during low-tide, the lighthouse, and the views of the San Diego skyline, this is a beautiful place to end your scenic tour for the day. Waterfront dining is plentiful a few minutes from the lighthouse. Watching the sun set over the water is divine.

 Tidepools near Pt. Loma, Photo courtesy,  OC Mom Blog

Tidepools near Pt. Loma, Photo courtesy, OC Mom Blog

Just be sure to keep your cameras ready. Your instagram account will thank you. 

 Add this to your scenic route: the best spot for viewing sea lions. We'll tell you more below. Photo courtesy, ThoseCrazyNelsons

Add this to your scenic route: the best spot for viewing sea lions. We'll tell you more below. Photo courtesy, ThoseCrazyNelsons

IMG_9657.JPG