|Europeans know no city is complete without a pretty dome and tower and thankfully San Diegans don't have to travel across the Atlantic to understand why.
Balboa Park is littered with cultural and historic treasures from all over the world, but perhaps the biggest one (quite literally) is the blue-and-gold-tiled dome and 200-foot tower that can be seen from almost anywhere in the park.
Influenced by Spanish and Mexican architecture, the California Building & Tower greets visitors at the main entrance of the park and houses the Museum of Man. Busts of Philip III, Carlos III, Portola and Cabrillo adorn the facade's rich decoration and the tower's ornate carvings are a dramatic skyline component during sunsets.
But there's more to towers than just good looks. In the tradition of tiny Mediterranean towns, the tower is the focal point of the park and a perfect place to meet friends or rejoin them after visits to separate museums.
California Building & Tower
El Prado in Balboa Park
San Diego, CA 92101
After your refreshment stop at the Museum of Art, continue heading west, along the newly recontructed colonnade, a few hundred yards past the sculpture garden and towards the cultural icon of San Diego: the world-famous Old Globe Theatre complex. Above it you will see the magnificent, 200-foot California Tower.