When you think of the consummate California beach community, Encinitas is one of the first places that should pop into your mind.

Located between Solana Beach and Carlsbad, Encinitas includes also includes the towns of Cardiff-by-the-Sea and Leucadia.  It’s known as the home to famous beach culture athletes like surfer Rob Machado and skateboarder Tony Hawk.   

Encinitas has everything for a perfect, laid-back, beach friendly experience.  Of course, the weather is perfect year-round.  Water and air temperatures average 63 degrees, and that draws all types of visitors who can pick and choose the exact type of beach trip they’re looking for. 

Encinitas beaches range from big and family-friendly like you’ll find at Moonlight Beach, to secluded local surf breaks at D Street Beach.  Coastal bluffs lead to sandy spots to spread a blanket where you can sunbathe, swim, do beachcombing, surf, paddleboard, or watch people.

Popular beaches also include Seaside, Cardiff Reef, and Swami’s Beach if you’re coming to town for the first time.  But there are also countless tidal beach breaks, reefs, jetties, and river mouths for miles up and down the local coast.  The pros head to bigger breaks at Blacks and La Jolla reefs 20 minutes south, and Oceanside beach breaks and Trestles are short drives north.

While beaches are the main attraction, there’s also a casual dining scene that locals and visitors love, with a wide range of taco and burger joints, small bistros and cafes, and high end steak and seafood options to please every budget.

Whether you head to a beach or not, the emphasis in Encinitas is on outdoor fun.  Take your dog for a walk on 40 miles of hiking trails, play a round of golf at Encinitas Ranch Golf Course, or nearby La Costa Country Club in Carlsbad and Torrey Pines in La Jolla.  For a quiet and reflective experience, you can spend hours exploring San Elijo Lagoon.

For a spiritual experience, head to Self Realization Fellowship Ashram Center above the surf Swami's Beach.  You’ll often find people throughout the community practicing yoga, meditation, and other self-realization exercises. Vinyasa Arts has live music on Wednesday nights, Ashtanga Yoga Center is known for specialty workshops, and Core Power Yoga has the best hot yoga in Encinitas.

Be sure to add the Lux Art Institute to your Encinitas bucket list and also head down Highway 101 to catch a movie at La Paloma Theatre, a staple in Encinitas since 1928. The nearby North Coast Repertory Theatre has a full slate of live theatre that earns rave reviews.