April in San Diego: Weather, What to Pack, and What to See

april in san diego

TripSavvy / Yifan Wu

Whether you're traveling for spring break or just a springtime getaway, San Diego is one of the best places you can visit in April. While much of the country is still straddling the fine line between winter and spring, San Diego in beautiful Southern California is fully basked in warm sunlight and cloudless skies. The ocean water still hasn't warmed up to summer temperatures, but the beaches around San Diego are some of the best you can find in the U.S. at this time of year.

San Diego is a popular place to visit at this time of year, especially with the spring break crowds who want sunshine and beaches. However, if you visit later in the month, the students have already left and the weather is even warmer.

San Diego Weather in April

By any definition, the weather in San Diego is perpetually fantastic and home to the quintessential sunny weather that most people imagine when they think of California. Even on certain days in the winter months, you can find people sitting out on the beach and taking in the sun, but by April the days are longer and the weather is more consistently warm.

  • Average High Temperature: 68 F (20 C)
  • Average Low Temperature: 56 F (13 C)
  • Water Temperature: 61 F (16 C)
  • Days With Rainfall: 4 days
  • Rainfall: 1.01 in (2.57 cm)
  • Sunshine: 67 percent
  • Daylight: 12 to 13 hours

Use the averages to plan ahead and know that you can, for the most part, expect sunny days with comfortable spring weather. However, storms are always a possibility, so check the forecast ahead of time in case you happen to visit during a rainy spell. April heatwaves are also a possibility, and you could come across hotter-than-normal weather—which would be perfect for a spring day on the beach.

What to Pack

Pack a mid-weight jacket, especially for evenings near the ocean. Long-sleeved shirts and sweaters layered over short sleeves are your best fashion strategy.

San Diego is a casual city, and you can wear jeans and other casual clothing almost anywhere. Although it may be a little early in the year for tank tops and flip-flops, you might find a few places that won't let you in if you're wearing them. But for the most part, especially with locales along the water, casualwear isn't a problem.

You won't likely need a raincoat, but if you're planning to take a bay cruise, that hooded windbreaker you packed will be super useful.

April Events in San Diego

With the year-long sunny weather that San Diego experiences, you can always find great outdoor events happening throughout the city. April, however, is when the weather really starts to warm up and San Diego hosts a variety of springtime events to welcome in beach season.

  • Del Mar Horse ShowThis three-week event is one of the biggest equestrian events in Southern California. Different horse shows highlight all types of events, such as Western riding, dressage, and jumping. Horse lovers shouldn't miss this festival that takes place throughout April in the city of Del Mar, about 20 miles north of downtown San Diego.
  • Carlsbad Flower Fields In the nearby city of Carlsbad, these fields come to life in vibrant colors each year in springtime. Depending on the weather, they bloom between March and May, so April is the prime month to visit these beautiful fields, accompanied by special events like concerts, garden yoga, and arts and crafts.
  • Watch a Padres Game: The Padres' pretty downtown baseball stadium is a great place to watch a game. The season begins in April, so it's a perfect time to catch one of the opening games of the season. Plus, not many stadiums in the U.S. offer the beautiful April weather that San Diego does.
  • Grunion Runs: Grunions are long, silver fish that during the breeding season leave the water and come up to mate on the beach. April is one of the prime months for witnessing this event, and if you get a fishing license, you can even grab them right off the beach and take them home to prepare and eat.

April Travel Tips

  • Hotel occupancy can be high in April. Avoid sellouts and high rates. Reserve as far ahead as you can, making sure that there are no cancellation penalties if you change your mind.
  • Conventions are less common in April than later in the year, but when they happen, they can fill the downtown hotels and raise rates. Check for conventions scheduled during your planned trip dates at the San Diego Convention Center website, which also shows how many people are expected to attend.