17 March, 2021
Situated in San Diego’s downtown area, Petco Park is home to the San Diego Padres and a must-visit site for any baseball fan hitting San Diego. But if baseball is not your thing, don’t be put off. This ground also hosts rugby sevens, soccer, and regular concerts along with many other events, so there is something for everyone.
It might strike you as unlikely, but every November the grounds are converted into a nine-hole par-3 golf course, with the holes set in the outfield, and many of the tees on the upper decks.
Opened in 2004, this park broke away from the traditional red brick walls architecture usually favored by ballparks of the past. Instead, the park is clad in handsome Indian Sandstone. You can take a tour which lasts for just over eighty minutes and incorporates the bullpen, press box, and even the luxury suite.
You need to think ahead if you are planning on taking in an event at Petco Park. Their bag policy only allows you a 16 x 16 x 8-inch soft-sided bag, which will be subject to security examination. If you are carrying luggage or any bag that doesn’t conform with the ballpark’s rules, you will be far better off storing it at a baggage storage near Petco Park.
There are many of these situated within easy walking distance of the park, and the freedom they offer to move around unencumbered will be well worth the few minutes it takes to stow your gear.
Compared to some ballparks, Petco has a pretty liberal food policy. You can bring in food for your own consumption, but not for large groups. It should be bagged in spill-proof containers, and if it is the sort of food that can be thrown as a projectile, such as apples or pears, it will need to have been sliced.
Food must be consumed either in your seats or in one of the designated picnic areas. You may not take it into restaurants, lounges, or suites. You must be able to store it comfortably beneath your seat.
Rules are slightly stricter when it comes to drinks. You will not be allowed to enter with alcohol or soda. You can bring in water in containers of 20 ounces or less, providing it is in a sealed, soft container that is see-through.
You can bring cameras or video equipment into the park, but it should not be of a size that will disturb other spectator’s viewing pleasure. They translate this to mean anything with a lens that is longer than six inches. Professional rigs will not gain access and special events might have different rules, so check in advance. Of course, any camera bags you bring will need to conform with the stadium size limit.
As with most large public venues, don’t think about bringing guns, knives, or cutting tools that may be deemed dangerous. This includes carrying a firearm, even when you have a license to do so.
Segways of over 30 kilograms, skateboards, laser pointers, and fireworks are all not permitted. Neither are frisbees, beach balls, or other items that might be thrown.
Suitcases, hard-sided bags, and cooler boxes also won’t make the cut either, so think about dropping them at a storage depot rather than having them confiscated by security or finding yourself being turned away from what might be one of the highlights of your trip.
One of the beauties about this ballpark is its accessibility. The San Diego Trolley light rail track runs right along the southern edge of the park. Just a mile away is the Santa Fe Depot, which is served by both Amtrak and Coaster.
While it is possible to purchase parking permits for off-park sites controlled by Padre, this can be difficult on days where the park is hosting a major event. Visitors are encouraged to use the numerous public transport options on these days. There are park and ride options that work well.
Petco Park is not just an iconic place to take in a concert, ball game, or other sporting event. It is also well situated to visit some of the other nearby attractions with diverse options such as Sparks Gallery and Dan Diego Central Library. The Gaslamp Quarter is teeming with nightlife.
Petco Park does not have its own luggage storage facilities and so you might want to think about finding one locally. There is no shortage of luggage storage near Petco Park, and freeing yourself of the burden of dragging bags around will make your visit far easier and much more pleasurable.