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San Diego, California

23 Jan, 2009

San Diego, California

One of the cities you can find in the state of California is the city of San Diego. This coastal city is ranked second in terms of the biggest cities in its state and 8th when ranked in terms of all the cities in the country. The city has a population of around a little over a million people and is also the home of a few notable military installations and facilities. You can find the US Navy, the US Marine Corps and the US Coast Guard ensconced in this city. The city can also boast of a lovely climate and miles and miles of lovely beaches, making it a big tourist destination as well. San Diego is found in the county that carries the same name and is the county seat for it as well.

Geography

The city of San Diego is located in the state of California and can be found north of Tijuana, Mexico. The city can also be found south of the popular Orange County. The land area of San Diego City measures around 963 square kilometers or 372 square miles with 324 square miles or 840 square kilometers of that area as land and 47 square miles or 123 square kilometers of that under water. The geographical makeup of the city includes deep canyons, park lands and mesas. The city also has mountains and desert areas as part of its geography and valleys are often occupied by farmlands.

San Diego, California

Population and Ancestry

The current population of San Diego which is pegged at around 1.3 million consists of a few ethnicities and races. Majority of the people in the city belong to the white or non-Hispanic ancestry. With the city’s close proximity to the Mexican border, Latinos or Hispanics make up around 25% of the current population. Asians, African Americans and other races which include American Indians, Hawaiians and other Islanders from the Pacific as well as Alaskans, make up the rest of the city’s diverse population. While the city is notably near the Mexican-American border, it is ironically one of the cities in the US with a rather low Hispanic population as compared to other cities located near a Hispanic country or border. The majority of the Hispanic population in the area consists mostly of Mexicans and those with Mexican heritage with a few other Hispanics coming from Cuba, Puerto Rico and even Spain.

History

The city of San Diego as well as the county of the same name, was the home of the Kumeyaay tribe before it was visited by a Portuguese explorer who was sailing for Spain. Juan Rodrigues Cabrillo happened upon the area and claimed it for Spain, naming it San Miguel. In 1602, Sebastian Vizcaino arrived in the same area on his ship the San Diego to map out the area. He renamed the area San Diego in honor of Saint Didacus. Even in the early days, San Diego was the home of military installations. One of the first military posts to be put up in the area was the one established by Gaspar de Portola and this was called Presidio of San Domingo. The city saw a huge number of historical events through the decades which include the famous gold rush of the 1800s, the Mexican-American war and other similar events. The city was officially founded in 1769 and was incorporated in 1850.

San Diego, California

Tourism and Economy

The city of San Diego is a popular tourist destination, making tourism one of its major sources of income along with manufacturing and defense. Included in the list of industries that call San Diego home are pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, wireless cellular technology companies, software developers and shipbuilding industries. There are a number of port based industries here as well which include submarine building yards, cruise ship companies and other similar businesses. Also part of the list of industries that bring in money to the city of San Diego are the defense contractors that are found here. Some of the biggest national defense contractors in the US have their headquarters in the city.

There are a lot of places for tourists to visit when it comes to San Diego. Due to its closeness to the water, the beaches abound with establishments that both locals and visitors alike can enjoy. There are parks, theme parks and special events that bring in people from everywhere to come and see the city. You can find Legoland, Seaworld, Balboa Park and even the San Diego Zoo as prime destinations to visit with family and friends. Also part of the tourism industry of the city is the huge number of museums, nightspots, cultural venues and sports venues scattered all over the metropolitan area. There are stadiums you can watch games in, theaters and performing arts venues where you can watch musicals and plays. You can also enjoy art museum, naval history museums and visit art galleries while in the city. Dining in San Diego is also one of the many things tourists indulge in while here since the city presents visitors with a huge array of cuisine that is influenced by the many different cultures in the area.

Military

San Diego is home to a number of military bases and installations, 16 of them, in fact. Aside from the Coast Guard and the Marine Corps Bases found here, San Diego is more popularly known for the large naval fleets that are found in its Naval Bases here. The city is home to Aircraft Carriers, submarines, assault ships, cruisers, destroyers, frigates and other similar military ships. The Naval institutions found here include Point Loma, San Diego or otherwise known as 32nd Street, the Naval Hospital known as the Bob Wilson Hospital and other similar installations. Also found near the city and still within the county of San Diego are Naval training facilities, air stations and recruitment depots for the Marines. While San Diego claims that it is the place where naval aviation was born, Pensacola, Florida is challenging such a claim.

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