Locals List The Best Dive Bars in San Diego

Cool Vibes, Hot Deals, and Warm Hearts

Bobby Dyer
Elevate SnnhGYNqm44 Unsplash

Locals know where it’s at.

You can trust locals to give you the scoop on the best places in their chosen city and San Diego locals do not disappoint. Check out our list of the best dive bars in San Diego

Waterfront Bar & Grill – A Little Italy Classic from 1933

Close to the San Diego – ITH Adventure Hostel, the oldest tavern in San Diego is still going strong. On the weekend they serve a hearty breakfast with old fashioned favorites like country fried steak and biscuits n’ gravy that are perfect for a day of hiking, biking, or climbing. At night, this vintage location serves up the “Waterfront Burger” which has third of a pound of beef and double cheese. A rowdy weekday happy hour singing sea shanties makes this the number one.

Nunu’s Tavern – A Mid-Century Gem in Hillcrest

Three blocks from the San Diego – ITH CoLive Balboa Park Hostel, the first fabulous bar in Hillcrest opened it’s doors. In the 1960’s, and still to this day, patrons sip cocktails and listen to the eclectic selection of music provided by the antique jukebox. A welcoming environment and friendly bar staff make this a comfortable place for locals and visitors alike. “Nunu’s Wings” are a must try with flavors like Tangy Aztec Gold and  Spicy Crazian Korean BBQ.

Tivoli Bar – Longstanding Haunt in The Gaslamp

In 1885, 35 years before Prohibition, a land baron opened “The Walker House,” which later became the Tivoli Bar and Grill. Serving up unpretentious drinks to thirsty sailors (from the basement in the 20’s), Tivoli bar has a long list of satisfied customers. The “I LOV IT” burger offers up 1/3lb of beef with bacon and a side of CrAzY Fries. Don’t pass up a chance to visit this historic Gaslamp dive bar in downtown San Diego.

Lahaina Beach House – Top Views in Pacific Beach

Down the beach from the San Diego – Beach Bungalow Surf Hostel, this unassuming beach hut offers gorgeous views that rival any other dive bars in Pacific Beach. Bring your friends to this authentic spot and enjoy discount pitchers of your favorite refreshers. This cash only bar and restaurant presents stunning Mexican cuisine on their huge 40ft patio. Watch surfers ride the waves in the morning while enjoying a specially prepared breakfast.


Best Dive Bars in San Diego!

Best Dive Bar In Little Italy – Waterfront

2044 Kettner Blvd, San Diego, CA 92101

Best Dive Bar In Hillcrest – Nunu’s

3537 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92103

Best Dive Bar In Gaslamp – Tivoli

505 Sixth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

Best Dive Bar In Pacific Beach – Lahaina

710 Oliver Ct, San Diego, CA 92109

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Cofounder of ITH Hostels. I love traveling, hosting, gardening, golfing, fishing, and sailing.