Known as the “Village by the Sea” and nestled along seven miles of pristine coastline, Carlsbad is one of Southern California’s prime leisure destinations offering world-class spas and wellness retreats, hotel stays with ocean views, a bustling craft beer and culinary scene, and a charming downtown village. With its attractive combination of sandy beaches, perfectly mild climate year-round, and close proximity to Los Angeles and San Diego, this affluent coastal destination offers endless opportunities for outdoor recreation. Check out our travel must-sees of what to see and eat and where to stay and play in the city of Carlsbad.
By Kinya Claiborne, STYLE & SOCIETY
Balancing oceanfront seclusion with modern amenities and worldly cultural touches, Carlsbad promise unforgettable stays with convenient access to sprawling beaches. Accommodations that range from oceanfront suites, luxury resorts, expansive vacation rentals, and budget-friendly rooms welcome travelers of every style. Perched directly upon the beach, the Beach Terrace Inn brings guests as close to the surf as possible without getting wet. Sunsets bathe the outdoor pool deck and private balconies in a warm evening glow, and mornings awaken guests with the sounds of ocean waves and jumping dolphins. Well-appointed, oversized guest rooms feature modern comfort amenities and beach-chic design.
Thanks to a mild climate, Carlsbad welcomes beachgoers year-round. With seven miles of coastline, the city boasts a coastal retreat for any personality, with beaches ranging from rustic expanses to strips of sand packed with aquatic activities and modern amenities. Swimming, surfing, paddle boarding, diving, and fishing count among the many recreational opportunities including seaside golf, camping, picnics and simply sunbathing.
Dining in Carlsbad can be a casual beachside picnic or a candlelit, white-linen evening affair, with plenty of delicious variety in between. An abundance of seafood eateries pass on the flavors of the Pacific, while Southwestern and Mexican restaurants offer modern interpretations of indigenous cuisines. One of Carlsbad’s most booming industries, craft brewing offers another avenue towards immersive dining, offering brewery tours, fresh pours, and expertly paired dishes from seven distinctive local craft labels. Park 101 is Carlsbad’s unique answer to community dining, lounging and sipping in style in the heart of the Village. Park 101’s Garden Pub invites guests to sip from a variety of 32 local tap beers or fine selections of regional wine. And if you want to sink your teeth into something unforgettable, the meat-centric menu offers lip-smacking selections of signature BBQ.
Spas in Carlsbad offer a variety of packages for those looking to add a relaxing start, a focused mid-week transformation, or a rejuvenating conclusion to their Southern California vacation. Inspired by the healing powers of the sea, Ocean Crest Spa at Cape Ray Carlsbad offers an environmentally mindful spa experience with coastally derived treatments naturally sourced products. Seven sea-themed treatment rooms and more than 5,000 square feet of resplendent ocean-hued oasis includes two steam rooms, oversized couple’s room with private tub and terrace, indoor and outdoor relaxation courtyards, and state-of-the-art massage tables featuring Bose internal resonance sound technology. Post massage, enjoy lunch and poolside cocktails at Chandler’s Oceanfront Restaurant located at Cape Rey.
Carlsbad is one of the Southern California’s premier shopping destinations and is perfect for a girls’ weekend getaway. Carlsbad Village sits only a few blocks from the beach featuring quaint and eclectic shops offering art, jewelry, clothing, wine, and more. Carlsbad Village showcases local and unique vendors including Seaworthy, a modern beach lifestyle shop; Humble Olive Oils, a family-owned story offering a selection of the world’s finest oils and in-house tasting room; Gems & Minerals Inc, for jewelry aficionados; and Fahrenheit 451, described as a candy store for the mind. While in the village, take a spin on a brightly colored Pedego Electric Bicycle.