If you’ve never been to this seaside hamlet, just 12 miles north of downtown San Diego, you might think you’re somewhere in the Cote d’Azur. It’s compact urban core – The Village – oozes European charm and sophistication (and a casual, relaxed, SoCal vibe), and boasts a variety of posh boutiques, museums, art galleries, elegant hotels and fine-dining options. More impressive, though, are the picturesque seven miles of curving coastline and dramatic sunset views enjoyed nightly by locals and visitors, alike, in popular Ellen Browning Scripps Park. The La Jolla Cove, a protected ecological preserve teeming with wildlife, has a pristine, swimmable (but rocky) beach that’s great for snorkeling if you don’t mind the chilly Pacific. Nearby La Jolla Shores is the area’s main recreational beach, which also has a grassy park and sand pits for evening bonfires. The Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve provides a range of hiking options with stellar ocean views, while the Birch Aquarium gives a glimpse of marine life up close. With so much to see and do, you’ll want to plan more than one day to take in all that this jewel by the sea has to offer.