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Fall in San Diego (and why it's better) | Addie Picker

As we reach the last few days of September and are officially (as of September 22) past the summer season, Fall festivities are just beginning. Yes, Fall is traditionally viewed as the season where leaves start changing colors, the weather becomes cooler, and afternoons are best spent in a cozy coffee shop with a pumpkin spiced latte. However, anyone that’s lived here even briefly knows that this is not quite the case for us San Diegans. With temperatures still reaching 80 degree heat for most of October and leaves hardly changing color, San Diego has its own, unique type of Fall. Though some believe the warm, beachy climate of San Diego robs us of a fall season altogether, our special twist on the time of year makes it, in reality, so much more special.

One feature of living by the beach is that no matter what season, the beach is always there. With an average ocean temperature of 65 degrees during October, a beach outing is still a viable - maybe cold - but viable option for a hot weekend afternoon. Though not viewed as a traditional fall activity, the privilege of unlimited beach access during those Autumn months is not only fun, but extremely unique. Whether it’s a trip to swim or to simply watch the sunset from the sand, having access to the beach (along with the laidback, beachy vibe) in the Fall is undoubtedly a feature envied by those hiding indoors elsewhere from the cold weather.

While San Diego may not have a wide array of trees with changing leaves, we certainly are not far from a place that does. Julian, California is only a 1-2 hour drive from San Diego and provides Fall lovers with a taste of the “true” season. The mountain town provides San Diegans with any aspect of Fall they feel they might be missing such as cooler temperatures, changing leaves, snow, and apple picking. Therefore, not only does San Diego have its own, unique variance of Fall, but has easy access to the “traditional” season for anyone with FOMO.

Though Southern California lacks the colder Fall weather (and permittance of the corresponding sweater weather outfits), it nonetheless provides the same fun Autumn activities. Fall lovers can still get a pumpkin-spiced drink at a coffee shop, visit a pumpkin patch, or decorate for Halloween just as anywhere else. In addition, the warmer weather arguably makes these activities that much more enjoyable, as extreme cold can limit time spent outside. For example, children trick-or-treating in San Diego may have a more fun and prolonged experience as they are not subject to freezing Fall temperatures. In addition, they may have more creative freedom with their costume without the worry of layering in the cold.

Fall in San Diego is undoubtedly different from the traditional expectations of the season. However, the unique nature of a Southern California Autumn makes it so much more special for locals. Not only do we still enjoy the same traditions, but we still have variety and freedom with our activities, granted by warmer temperatures and access to the beach. San Diego Autumn is surely one of a kind, and makes for an arguably even better spooky season than one could imagine.

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