Peaceful paradise of San Diego
What is your dream destination?
This may well be the number one question which passionate travelers are most frequently asked to share their pearls of wisdom. For years I answered San Diego with a dreamy tone and heartwarming memories in my mind. Nowadays my answer has switched to oh-so-corny but slightly more soulful one. My dream destination is the one close to my friends and family. The place where I’m able to share and receive love. Wherever that may be. While I’m still in search of the exact coordinates of that cherry-on-top destination, I’m going to share a few delectable reasons why San Diego has been my veritable slice of heaven for a small decade. I begin my abundant praise of the city by writing about Del Mar, one of its silent secrets.
Why San Diego?
Laid-back San Diego fascinates with mild climate, a world-famous zoo and mouthwatering tacos. 70 miles of coastline make it easy for everyone to find their definition of a gorgeous soft sandy beach. The city is widespread and divided into several unique residential zones. The population is over 1,3 million, making it the 8th biggest city of United States. For people with an appetite for a short adventure and Piña Colada – Mexico is just a stone throw away.
Del Mar exposed
Tucked away from all the hustle and bustle, the neighborhood of Del Mar shines in the Northern part of San Diego. There you can prepare yourself to mind-blowing views, inviting porches, and a sophisticated dose of luxury. The small upscale area has a delightful feel-good factor to it combined with remarkably good weather. While you can’t find Downtown’s bubbly move and groove in Del Mar, its nightlife has a charme of its own with a few extraordinary qualities. The area a has classy haute cuisine, perfectly lined up waves merely footsteps away from your doorstep, small unique boutiques, the world-famous racetrack and the Torrey Pines hike. Just a few of its intriguing qualities.
You need a car
While a car is the only convenient way of transport, there’s a good and reliable shuttle service available from San Diego International Airport or LAX, Los Angeles International Airport, to your final destination in the coastal area. Several large-scale rental companies provide a chance to rent a vehicle from Los Angeles and return it to San Diego, and vice versa. If traveling all the way from Los Angeles without a rental, people are also able to take the beyond lush and gorgeous Amtrak train journey to Solana Beach, located right by Del Mar. The price for the one-way journey varies between 20-40 dollars. Del Mar is situated along the legendary U.S. 101 route, also referred to as the Pacific Coast Highway. The scenery along the 101 route offers roadtrippers a beautiful overlook on the coast. It’s also the longest highway in California.
Let’s face it. There are times when you need a week of nothing but indulgence. No judgement here, I often need two. Del Mar certainly knows how to spoil its visitors. A breathtaking 2 miles of coastline make it a beach-front masterpiece. There are lagoons in both ends of the area and a separate beach for doggies only. History tells that the area has been inspirational for artists like the Beach Boys and other high-profile performers.
Tony Hawk, the only skateboarder that even us ladies know by name, is originally from Del Mar. He’s frequently spotted dining in some of the areas beyond fine tasting eateries. The small center has around 60 shops and over 20 restaurants.
A few mojitos
Del Mar doesn’t blow your speakers out, and might mistakenly seem like a total sleepy gem. While there are more dog beauty saloons than clubs to hit, Del Mar Plaza surroundings can still offer your high heels the party they deserve.
Jimmy O’s is the place to dance on the tables, despite the gender or age. En Fuego Cantina&Grill is a good choice for the night-starter mojitos. Those sweeter than fiction cocktails will put even Willy Wonka out of business. Del Mar’s nightlife is easy to combine with either Downtown or North County party rounds; it’s located between two vibrant party sections.
Spot Flipper and Free Willy
In Del Mar, even exercising feels like treating yourself. The area is a perfect spot to unleash your inner Forrest Gump. Those heavenly morning runs with sparks of infinite sunshine can’t be beat. A thrilling hike in Torrey Pines Reserve leaves visitors breathless with its biodiversity and idyllic views. Torrey Pines are the rarest pine species in US. Whales and bottlenose dolphins can also be spotted while hiking several easy trails. Love to surf? Everyone will find the right wave for them in San Diego, and specially close in Del Mar. Just put your wetsuit on, rent a board and ask locals where you can tame the rookie waves.
In a nutshell
Del Mar offers the picturesque shoreline, but if you have an appetite for funky nights out on the town, head to other parts of San Diego. The area provides a peaceful pit stop with a chance to enjoy activities that reflect your passions.
Until the day I might get spoiled by the city’s gratifying atmosphere as a permanent resident, I will focus on reliving my happy mementos over and over again. Hopefully next time I make my way to my ultimate favorite place, the cliffs at 100 4th street, and that time I just might stay for good.
Source to text
Text, Photos Rita Maria