A Comparison of Hop on Hop off Tours in San Diego

by Paul Joseph  |  Published November 2, 2022

If you’re visiting San Diego without a car and want to use public transport to get around the city, you may want to consider booking tickets for a hop-on hop-off bus tour.

(Photo: Historic Tours of America / Courtesy GetYourGuide)

Giving you the freedom and flexibility to board buses at your leisure, hop-on hop-off tours are among the most efficient and cost-effective ways to see a lot of a city in a short space of time. In San Diego, you can buy hop-on hop-off tickets through Historic Tours of America, who offer a choice of two tours in the city. To help you pick the best one for you, we’ve compared them both below.

Old Town San Diego: Hop-on Hop-off Narrated Tour

Available as either gold or platinum passes, this hop-on hop-off narrated tour invites you to jump on one of the city’s distinctive green or orange trolleys and see the best sites in San Diego. Starting at any one of 12 boarding points at any time of day, you’ll ride through town in an authentic trolley while listening to a live guide provide entertaining narration and insight as you travel. Then, at stops throughout the city, you’ll have the chance to disembark and spend time exploring dozens of points of interest, such as the Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, the Midway Aircraft Carrier Museum, and the historic Gaslamp Quarter. Tickets are valid for a choice of 1 or 2 days and include admission to select venues along the routes. From $46.27 per person.

Book at GetYourGuide

San Diego Shore Excursion: San Diego Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley

(Photo: Historic Tours of America / Courtesy Viator)

If you’re arriving into San Diego by cruise ship, and would like to hit the road running, then this hop-on hop-off tour is a convenient choice. Valid for a full day, you can board the trolley at your cruise ship’s port of call before embarking on as much sightseeing as you wish, with the chance to visit historic landmarks and vibrant neighbourhoods at eleven centrally-located stops, all handily located close to popular attractions, shops and restaurants. Get a glimpse of California’s past in the Old Town; see the magnificent ships that moor at the bustling waterfront; and grab a spot on a beach to watch surfers catch breaking waves – the city is your oyster. From $47.35 per person.

Book at Viator