Tips and Tricks for Getting Around La Mesa, California

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The growing city of La Mesa, fondly referred to as The Jewel of the Hills by residents, is a one-stop destination for shopping, dining, and leisure experiences. With so much to discover, you’ll need an insider’s guide. That’s why we’ve put together this list of handy tips and tricks for getting around La Mesa, California.

The City’s Public Transit System

If you’re flying to the area via San Diego International Airport, you’ll be pleased to discover the modern convenience of public transportation, right from the terminal. The Metropolitan Transit System’s Route 992 runs daily from 5:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., and stops at Terminals 1 and 2 every 15 minutes on weekdays and every 30 minutes on weekends and holidays.

The bus service also conveniently connects with Trolley, COASTER commuter trains, and Amtrak Intercity stations. From downtown San Diego, hop aboard the Orange Line light rail network at Arnele Avenue for a 35-minute trolley ride to La Mesa’s city center.

You can also rent a car at the airport. All the popular national brands have counters there. The consolidated rental car center is a full-service location where you’ll pick up and drop off your vehicle. Free shuttle buses ferry customers to and from the airport terminals and the rental car center.

Book a Conveniently Located Hotel

La Mesa is a hotspot for travel, so rest assured there are plenty of comfortable places to lay your head, and they’re conveniently located, too. From family-friendly locations like The Days Inn and Suites on El Cajon Blvd. to a no-frills motel that won’t bust your budget such as Motel 6 on Alvarado Rd., you’re sure to find the right place for your stay.

The Heritage Inn in La Mesa is close to the suburbs for the opportunity to explore local neighborhoods with the kids, while The Lodge is for adults only, perfect for those romantic getaways. No matter where you choose to stay on your Southern California vacation,  you’ll find it here in La Mesa.

Discover the City’s Walking Paths

Walking is an excellent way to explore the village at your own pace, and La Mesa’s urban trail systems offer explorers three distinct routes, each color-coded based on its difficulty level.

When you’ve got the kids in tow or just want to meander through neighborhoods, take the blue path for beginners. Green is for intermediate level trails, and if you want a work out with your tour through the city, then hit the red marked trails for an advanced experience. The Stride Trail starts at Jackson Park and winds its way through 5 miles, while the hilly Challenge pathway begins at Highwood Park.

More trails are in the works thanks to the city’s Urban Trails Mobility Action Plan to encourage walking, biking, and transit use. These 19 new paths will connect visitors and residents with key community destinations including parks, medical facilities, shopping centers, and restaurants.

Next time you head out to La Mesa, don’t forget to check out this list. Armed with these handy tips and tricks, you’ll get around the village of La Mesa, California like a local.