The 11,179-foot-long (3,407 m or 2.1 mi) bridge ascends from Coronado at a 4.67 percent grade before curving 80 degrees toward San Diego. The span reaches a maximum height of 200 feet (61m), allowing the U.S. Navy ships which operate out of the nearby Naval Station San Diego to pass underneath it. In 2002, it became the last toll bridge in Southern California to discontinue tolls. The bridge was designed entirely and exclusively for motor vehicle traffic; there are no pedestrian walkways, bike paths, or shoulders ("breakdown lanes"). Cyclists and runners have the opportunity to ride and run over the bridge in the "Bike the Bay" and "Bay Bridge Run" events held once a year.
Birch Aquarium (sometimes referred to as Scripps Aquarium or Birch Aquarium) is the public exploration center for the world-renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego. Birch Aquarium at Scripps has an annual attendance of more than 400,000 and the hilltop site provides spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. Swami's, also known as "Swamis", is an internationally known surfing spot, a point break located in Encinitas, California. Swami's was named after Swami Paramahansa Yogananda, because the grounds and hermitage of the Self-Realization Fellowship ashram, built in 1937, overlook this reef point.