About San Diego



San Diego is the eighth-largest city in the United States and second-largest city in California. The city is located on the coast of the Pacific Ocean in Southern California, approximately 120 miles south of Los Angeles and immediately adjacent to the Mexican border.

The birthplace of California, San Diego is known for its mild year-round climate, natural deep-water harbor, extensive beaches, long association with the U.S. Navy, and recent emergence as a healthcare and biotechnology development center. The population was 1,322,553 based on latest population estimates for 2012.

The city is the county seat of San Diego County and is the economic center of the San Diego–Carlsbad–San Marcos metropolitan area as well as the San Diego–Tijuana metropolitan area. San Diego’s main economic engines are military and defense-related activities, tourism, international trade, and manufacturing. The presence of the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), with the affiliated UCSD Medical Center, has helped make the area a center of research in biotechnology.

Interesting Facts

  • Colleges and universities: According to education rankings released by the U.S. Census Bureau, 40.4 percent of San Diegans ages 25 and older hold bachelor’s degrees. The census ranks the city as the ninth most educated city in the United States based on these figures.
  • Founded: July 16, 1769
  • Incorporated: March 27, 1850
  • Elevation: Sea level to 1,593 ft (sea level to 486 m)
  • Population: (Census 2010) City 1,322,553
  • Rank: 2nd in California
  • Rank: 8th in the United States