Many hotels, marinas, and yacht clubs rent slips short term. Call ahead, because available space is limited. The San Diego and Southwestern yacht clubs have reciprocal arrangements with other yacht clubs.
The San Diego Bay Ferry takes you between downtown and Coronado in a nostalgic, old-school ferry every hour from 9 am to 10 pm. The ride lasts about 15 minutes and costs $4.25 each way; bicycles and Segways are free. The Water Taxi is a great alternative for nighttime transit along San Diego Bay. It is on call daily from 3 to 10 and costs $8 each way.
SEAL Amphibious tours, operated by Old Town Trolley, combine the best of land and sea, departing from Seaport Village daily. After exploring picturesque San Diego neighborhoods, the bus-boat hybrid rolls right into the water for a cruise around the bay. It's all narrated with fun facts, too.
San Diego Bay Ferry (1050 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA, 92101. 800/442–7847. www.sdhe.com.)
SEAL Amphibious tours (San Diego, CA. www.sealtours.com.)
Water Taxi (1050 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA, 92101. 619/235–8294. www.sdhe.com.)
Best Western Island Palms Hotel & Marina (2051 Shelter Island Dr., San Diego, CA, 92106. 619/222-0561.)
The Dana on Mission Bay (1710 W. Mission Bay Dr., San Diego, CA, 92109. 619/222–2141. www.thedana.com.)
Kona Kai Resort (1551 Shelter Island Dr., San Diego, CA, 92106. 619/224–7547. www.resortkonakai.com.)
San Diego Marriott Hotel and Marina (3333 W. Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA, 92101. 619/230–8955. www.marriott.com.)
San Diego Yacht Club (1011 Anchorage La., 92106. 619/221–6400. www.sdyc.org.)
Southwestern Yacht Club (2702 Qualtrough St., San Diego, CA, 92106. 619/222–0438.)
Cruise lines that make regular calls at San Diego include Holland American, Royal Caribbean, Princess, Disney, Regent 7 Seas, and Celebrity. Ships heading to and from Alaska, Mexico, and the Panama Canal arrive and depart from the Cruise Terminal, which is on the B Street Pier (1140 N. Harbor Drive). This is a busy spot, where you can get advice at the International Visitor Center and catch the Coronado Ferry or Water Taxi. San Diego Harbor Excursion bay cruises also dock here. The San Diego Maritime Museum and the Midway Museum are just steps away, and the terminal is a short taxi ride from Balboa Park, Little Italy, and the Gaslamp Quarter. Fares from the cruise-ship terminal are $18 to Balboa Park, $15 to SeaWorld, and $14 to the Gaslamp Quarter.
Celebrity (800/647–2251. www.celebrity.com.)
Holland America (800/426–0327. www.hollandamerica.com.)
Princess Cruises (800/774–6237. www.princess.com.)
Royal Caribbean International (800/338–4962. www.royalcaribbean.com.)