Serving the communities of Chula Vista, National City, Imperial Beach, San Ysidro, Otay Mesa, Bonita and the Tijuana River Valley. This website is dedicated to covering the people, food, attractions and culture of the South Bay, San Diego.
I am Barbara Zaragoza and you’ll find me out-and-about in the South Bay of San Diego covering local politics, art, food and travel. My passion is for discovering places and covering issues that most media outlets would normally dismiss. I also enjoy slow travel, which includes reading the plaques along a street or getting to know the history of an old house down the block.
I started South Bay Compass to fill a need. This region is one of the most fascinating, yet overlooked places in the United States: a border culture located at the San Diego-Tijuana boundary line.
Whether you’re a community member who wants to know more about where you live or a tourist from abroad — the South Bay is the place to be.
Ingratiate yourself into the local lore. Start, maybe, at Friendship Park where you can wave to fellow brothers from behind a sad mesh fence. From there, pick vegetables at a local farm, find the house of Rita Hayworth or the Border Baron who drank a bottle of whiskey a day, search for boundary monuments or eat at a Victorian tea house. It’s all in this border corridor, unlike anything you’ll ever see.
Most importantly, this website is entirely run through donations. You’ll notice zero advertisements on this website. All restaurant meals are paid out-of-pocket by me, not subsidized. All write-ups of people and places are selected with no financial contribution by that person or any PR firm.