Nestor – San Diego, CA

Nestor is a small neighborhood located about 13 miles south of downtown San Diego, just north of the Mexican border. On the west side of the neighborhood, you'll find the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve, the Tijana River, and NOLF Imperial Beach, a Naval airport. With good schools and a family-friendly atmosphere, Nestor is a terrific community offering endless sunshine, great shopping, beautiful parks, and terrific restaurants.

Schools in Nestor

School data provided by GreatSchools

Restaurants & Nightlife

Nestor has a diverse selection of restaurants and eateries within its boundaries. This neighborhood has casual options for grabbing a quick bite to eat and several authentic sit-down locations that provide Mexican- or Thai-inspired dishes. The central location for restaurants and nightlife activity in Nestor borders State Highway 75. Baja Oyster & Sushi has a diverse menu that customers highly recommend for providing items that include traditional Mexican dishes, seafood items, and sushi. This restaurant has a hole-in-the-wall appearance that many guests find misleading for the excellent quality of food and service. Baja Oyster & Sushi serves complimentary chips and salsa with every meal and popular menu items include fish tacos, seafood medley, and any of the sushi rolls. Another popular restaurant, Noodles Noodles, prepares authentic Thai-inspired dishes and soups that guests praise continuously for presentation and texture. Noodles Noodles has grown in popularity for the simple menu that incorporates traditional Thai flavors and spice. This restaurant has popular items that include egg noodle soup, spicy fried rice, and pad Thai. Noodles Noodles gives guests a genuine Thai experience that combines the authentic decor and accents with traditional meals. Crisp Fish N Chips provides well-prepared seafood dishes in generously-sized portions that guests find enjoyable and affordable. Popular items include the fried oysters, jumbo shrimp, fried calamari, and hush puppies. Crisp Fish N Chips has a friendly staff and excellent customer service that adds to the pleasant dining experience. Nightlife in Nestor consists of dive bars, lounges, sports bars, and pool halls. This neighborhood has an active nightlife scene that provides a social and lively energy.

History & Culture

Nestor received its name from Nestor A. Young. Young was an assemblyman for California from 1884 to 1886 and a harbor master in 1889. In 1957, the Nestor area was annexed from San Diego County. At this time, the area consisted of less than 1,000 housing units; however, in the late 1960s, Nestor's residential development increased considerably. In addition, schools, parks, and other public facilities also witnessed an increase. Dating back to around 1860, South Bay Salt Works is the second-oldest business in San Diego. Located in Nestor, this salt factory is listed on the California Register of Historical Places. The salt ponds of the salt works are located in the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. These salt ponds breed brine shrimp and brine flies, which feed local and migrating birds. There are more than 94 species of birds in the area, including threatened and endangered species like the California least tern.


Nestor has reliable transit options and some public transportation, but you'll probably want a car when you move to an apartment in Nestor. This neighborhood has a few Metropolitan Transit System bus lines, including routes 901 and 933, which run east and west throughout the area. Car-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft serve the San Diego area for residents without a vehicle. Local taxis, such as Imperial Beach Cab, operate regularly in this area and may be hailed or called in advance. Parking consists of street parking and customer parking lots in Nestor, with some street availability being free of charge. For access to nearby locations, State Highway 75 and Interstate 5 allow residents to travel easily.


The cost of living in Nestor sits 18 percent lower than San Diego, and the average apartment in Nestor rents for about $1,042. The cost of living includes public transportation, which costs $2.25 for a one-way fare for travel into the heart of the city. Gas is 12 percent higher than the national average, and residents can expect to pay $4 for a domestic beer at a local bar.


Shopping in Nestor revolves around large chain retailers and department stores. Although a large mall rests several miles away, this neighborhood has niche boutiques and specialty stores that locals use for hard-to-find or unique items. The central locations for shopping in this area border either Colorado Avenue or State Highway 75. For grocery needs, residents use Farm Fresh Supermarket, which has a deli, butcher, and bakery. This retailer also has basic home essentials, health & beauty departments, and a wide range of food items. One of the closet farmers markets, Imperial Beach Farmers Market, has multiple vendors that sell fruits, flowers, veggies, crafts, prepared food, and jewelry. This market sits on Evergreen Avenue in Imperial Beach and opens Fridays from noon until 7:30 pm. Diamond Beauty Supply sells cosmetics and beauty supplies at competitive prices, which most guests find valuable. Diamond Beauty Supply has a friendly and knowledgeable staff that guests deem helpful and informative. Another specialty store, Puff N Stuff, provides excellent customer service that keeps customers coming back. This tobacco shop sells every type of tobacco product from hookah products to cigarettes. Puff N Stuff has built a reputation as a customer-friendly shop that caters to the needs of the guest. This store takes specialty orders to get the products each customer needs.


Nestor has five different neighborhood parks that include Nestor Park and Berry Park, which are pet-friendly and free for recreational use. Residents also use the Robert Egger Senior South Bay Recreation Center. This center sits on more than eight acres of land and includes a community park that incorporates various sports facilities and a recreation center. This center has co-ed softball and youth basketball as well as areas for exercise Annual events and special events include Candy Cane Lunch, movie nights, and the tiny tots programs. Just outside the neighborhood, the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge protects a wide variety of endangered and threatened species. The refuge covers 2,620 acres of land and water around the San Diego Bay. Visitors to the park enjoy bird-watching, bicycling, and hiking. Monthly guided tours are also offered. Some boating is allowed in certain areas, as well. The refuge prohibits hunting and fishing. The Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve protects the habitat and animals of the Tijuana River and its dunes, beaches, salt marsh, and upland habitats. Bird-watching is common here, as well, with more than 370 species spotted. The park offers guided nature and bird walks, hiking trails, a free Saturday Speaker Series (with coffee), and a variety of festivals and events. If you want to go on a hike, stop by the Visitor Center first -- they'll give you wildlife updates, a trail map, and will loan you a pair of binoculars.
Oro Vista Villas
1767 Oro Vista Rd, San Diego, CA 92154
2 hrs
$1,589 - 2,018 2 Bedroom Available Now
Valley Breeze Apartments
1394 Oro Vista Rd, San Diego, CA 92154
2 days
$1,700 - 1,950 2-3 Bedroom Available Now