With a little planning, you can enjoy a carefree car-free getaway in this low-key Southern California beach town located between San Diego and Los Angeles.
Give your car a break and hop onto the Pacific Surfliner to Oceanside, a classic SoCal beach town, located between Los Angeles and San Diego. Oceanside’s proximity to Camp Pendleton, has long made it a second home to service men and women, but recent commercial growth has infused this small town with more energy and attractions. The train station, located right in downtown Oceanside, is walking distance from hotels, restaurants and the beach, so you can get around by foot or by wheels in this bike-friendly community. Rent a cruiser or surrey at Wheel Fun Rentals, next to the pier, and see the coastline from a different perspective. With the ocean as the main event here, you’ll find plenty of water sports and activities to keep you busy, including surfing, kayaking, jet skiing and boating (available for rent at the harbor).
Walk only a few blocks from the train station to Wyndham Oceanside Pier Resort, just steps away from the sand and California’s longest wooden pier. Enjoy sweeping ocean views and palm trees swaying in the breeze from your spacious room, decorated in a fresh and colorful, California vibe. Rooms are 20% off rack rate if you take the train (code: Amtrak). Visit the California Surf Museum (closes at 4pm) that documents the history of surfing, beach fashion and the care-free spirit of surfers worldwide. A timely new exhibit features surf champion, Bethany Hamilton, who lost her arm during a shark attack at age 13, and courageously went on to win a national surf competition one year later. Her shark-bitten surfboard is on display and a movie about her life, “Soul Surfer,” was recently released in theaters.
For dinner, stroll over to hip Harney’s Sushi. Vibrant colored artwork and chic lighting make for a stylish and eco-friendly space (recycled products are used throughout). A DJ spinning tunes adds to the mix. Scores of inventive delicious food and drink items fill the menu. Try the roasted garlic edamame and a Hope Roll, consisting of shrimp tempura, spicy crab, avocado, Cajun-seared tuna, topped with Asian micro greens and a Wasabi citrus aioli.
Another worthy culinary spot, The Flying Pig Pub & Kitchen, just opened and serves up compelling gastropub food like molasses-braised pork belly over collard greens, air-whipped spoon bread (think cornbread souffle), mac-n-cheese with glorious nuggets of bacon, and sinful chocolate pot de creme.
For more information on activities and attractions in Oceanside, click here…