No better place to spend the holidays than San Diego

By Ryan Finley, Contributor

Holiday time is here and, as usual, I will be at the beach in a Santa hat.

As a San Diegan, I will be spending another Winter vacation playing golf, bodysurfing, and mixing in a little softball before doing some Christmas shopping.

You see, "America's Finest City" has pleasant weather and ideal locations, making San Diego the ideal Christmas vacation.

Of all there is to do in San Diego, the city's golf courses are toward the top of the list. In San Diego, there is truly a course for everyone. From kids to die-hards, there are courses that suit just about everybody in the city, whether they're locals or snowbirds looking for a place to shoot during the Christmas season.

For beginners, there is no better place to break in new clubs than the Presidio par-3 course in historic Old Town. The host of the annual junior national tournament, the course offers short, pitch-and-put style courses ideal for the first time golfer. Short, inexpensive (about $7 for 18 holes), and located in one of San Diego's most picturesque areas, the Presidio is the ideal place to take new clubs and mess around.

If Presidio is busy (call ahead on weekends), the Four Points Hotel off Aero Drive near Montgomery Field has a par-3 course that is less traveled but as nice as Presidio's course.

Looking for a great course at a cheap price? San Diego's public courses are second-to-none. In the city's south county, both Bonita Golf Course and Chula Vista Golf Course offer reasonable prices (around $20) in one of the city's most beautiful neighborhoods.

After a round at either one of the courses (they're within a mile of each other), head across the street to Lolita's Restaurant, which has the best burritos in town, bar none.

The only downfall of both Bonita and Chula Vista Golf Courses is the distance from the city itself. Roughly 25 minutes from the heart of San Diego's Mission Valley, both courses take a good afternoon to play.

In the mood for something a bit nicer? Might I suggest Riverwalk Golf Club in the heart of Mission Valley. Only two years old, Riverwalk has radar-oriented golf carts and is located on prime valley property. So, head to the Valley, play some golf, and "thoughtfully" do some shopping at Fashion Valley Mall, roughly a block away.

San Diego is full of winter gems. The city's kind weather and abundance of golf courses for people of all ages and budgets make it a golfer's dream vacation.

Just stay off of the beach. That's mine.

Ryan Finley, Contributor

A sophomore majoring in journalism at the University of Arizona, Ryan is the volleyball beat writer for the Arizona Daily Wildcat, the student voice of the U of A.

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