There are about a dozen shops located in the Old Town area, including some pretty big ones like the Old Town Market. They're great places to shop for souvenirs, mostly for Mexican-influenced arts and crafts, but there are also a few novelty stores that specialize in products such as tea, candy, olive oil and so on. So if you're looking for something more original than an "I Love San Diego" t-shirt, this might be the right place for you!
What to buy: I bought a chanchito (three-legged wooden pig) to add to my pig collection - they're supposed to bring good luck :o) I also bought some homemade saltwater taffy and licorice at the candy shop, what a treat!
Olive Oil is available in Old Town. The Temecula Olive Oil Company has opened a location in the Plaza del Pasado portion. It sits behind the Casa de Reyes Mexican Restaurant and within an arched walkway. If you want to try a taste, there is sampling of the oils. This store opened in March, 2008 and looks like it should do well with the locals as well as tourists that flock to Old Town San Diego.
What to buy: Olive Oil is a good start for what to buy. Not being funny here, the olive oil is grown from the trees, pressed, and packaged by the family owned and operated business. 100% virgin olive oil and 100% California grown.
Once you venture down here, you'll be greeted by so much activities here. If your a big shopper, I am not, but like to look, there is so much to offer. So, take some time to stroll down through this streets and enjoy what Old Town has to offer!
This is located right in Old Town and consist of many unquie shops of folk art, gifts, fashion, jewelry, and home decor. They even had a some small performance shows going on within the patio area. Pretty neat shops.
What to buy: I am a big window shoppers, don't spend much. Can't afford to with two boys to feed......lol!
What to pay: Prices vary from shop to shop, but affordable I would say
A Mexican restaurant in my hometown decorates its walls with these lovely tiles showing some holy people. When I knew I was going to South California I was hoping to get some of them there. I was so happy when we found the Tile Shop in San Diego's old town. Unfortunately they didn't have any "holy" tiles but still there were so many lovely tiles it was hard to choose.
What to buy: Blue tiles, green tiles, yellow tiles, red tiles, tiles with cactus, tiles with Mexicans, tiles with floral designs, tiles with numbers, tiles with letters, tiles, tiles, tiles...
What to pay: Small Mexican tiles (2") are only 1.50, big ones (4") are 2.90 $.
This little women's shop carried an interesting assortment of southwest clothing and jewelry. How about a chili pepper necklace? Actually there are many stores in the Bazaar area with so many choices...you could shop for two days and keep finding unusual arts, jewelry, kitchen ware, ceramics, clothing...and for extras, there are benches amongst tropical plants and live entertainment on the outdoor stage. Pleasant human scale to shop in. Sure it is designed for tourists...but certainly way better than going to a mall.
Usually, you go to the jewelry stores in malls to make "special" purchases...but if you do that, you've made a big mistake. I was clued in about this place from a friend, and boy was it worth the visit. The employees of this establishment are first class (no pressure whatsoever) and the jewelry is top notch. You get the best quality at fantastic prices, and they work with you to stay within your budget.
What to buy: Well it's a pretty comprehensive list, but you should go here to shop for rings, bracelets and watches.
What to pay: What you pay depends on what you plan on purchasing. Prices start around $350.00 and go up from there (rings, watches, necklaces, etc.).
Many beautifully crafted pottery and crafts featured here as pictured.
What to buy: terracotta items.
What to pay: a few dollars or many, mostly affordable