San Diego is the perfect place if you love a good movie and the outdoors. Film buffs are certain to remember Ron Burgundy and the iconic line “Stay Classy, San Diego” in the original Anchorman. And let’s not forget Tom Cruise playing volleyball on the beach and singing “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’” to Kelly McGillis in Top Gun.
Now just add San Diego’s nearly perfect weather and clear starry nights to a fun-filled movie. You have the perfect combination for a great night out with friends and family or a romantic date night with your significant other. Below is a list of 7 outdoor venues that should be included on your next “must watch” movie list.
Rooftop Cinema Club
Where: 1 Market Pl, San Diego, CA 92101
Check out the Rooftop Cinema Club screening films on the fourth-floor terrace of the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego in downtown. Lean back and relax in adjustable lounge seats for one or love seats for two (perfect for date night) under the night sky with a spectacular cityscape backdrop. Buy tickets early to avoid sellouts of Pulp Fiction, Moulin Rouge, The Goonies, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, and many other movie classics.
Cinema Under the Stars
Where: 4040 Goldfinch St, San Diego, CA 92103
Buy your snacks, sit back and enjoy Cinema Under the Stars in the charming Mission Hills neighborhood. Watch current, classic and cult favorites on an outdoor 20-foot screen with HD projection and surround sound just like an indoor theater. Relax in zero gravity recliners or love seat cabanas or comfy ottomans with a table where you can set your $2.00 concessions. Make certain to reserve seats.
Movies on the Bay
Where: 3999 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109
Catch a family-friendly movie on a large inflatable outdoor screen at the Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa along scenic Mission Bay. Bring your blankets, chairs and snacks for relaxing Movies on the Bay shown Tuesday, Friday and Sunday nights beginning at dusk. Admission is free and open to the public. Refreshments are also available for sale during the flicks. Watch favorites like Hook, Back to the Future, Finding Nemo, and Guardians of the Galaxy.
Movies on the Beach
Where: 1500 Orange Ave, Coronado, CA 92118
Snuggle up on the famous Hotel del Coronado‘s beach for Movies on the Beach featuring favorite family movies and cult classics in an oceanfront theater under the stars. Guests can enjoy seating in the hotel’s sand chairs ($25/chair, reservations required). Or treat yourself to an ultimate movie experience with a private beach bonfire, s’mores for 4 guests, two chairs, and a beach daybed ($300, advanced reservations required). Enjoy your spring break watching classics Grease and Dolphin Tale.
Cruise-In on San Diego Bay
Where: 1800 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
Experience a fun San Diego evening watching a movie and dining alfresco on San Diego Bay. Hornblower’s Dinner & A Movie on the Bay Cruise features date-night Thursdays and family-themed Sunday showings. Enjoy a special chef-curated menu to make this outdoor “cruise-in” a truly memorable experience. Watch film classics and modern movie favorites like La La Land, Zoolander, Mean Girls, and Tootsie.
Drive-In with History
Where: 10990 Woodside Ave N, Santee, CA 92071
Act like a local and take in a double feature at the popular Santee Drive-In, family-owned since 1958. Enjoy an old-fashioned movie night under the stars and watch two feature films for one price in the comfort and safety of your own car. Listen to the sound through your car stereo system. Gorge on traditional movie theater snack bar food including hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, popcorn, candy, soda, and more. First movies start at 8 p.m., and the drive-in is open 7 nights a week, 365 days a year.
Outdoor Cinema Meets the Sea
Where: 2170 Coronado Ave, San Diego, CA 92154
Head to the South Bay Drive-In where you can enjoy a movie experience under the stars with an ocean breeze. The Pacific is just minutes from this three-screen theater that has entertained families, friends and couples since 1958. Check out the blockbuster coming attractions like Godzilla Vs. Kong, A Quiet Place Part 2, The Sponge Bob Movie: Sponge On, and Top Gun: Maverick. First movies start at 8 p.m., and the drive-in is open 7 nights a week, 365 days a year.