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10 Reasons To Visit Oceanside

SmarterTravel

Author: Jill Weinlein
Date of Trip: May 2015

Located between Los Angeles and San Diego is a beach community that is revitalized with new hotels, restaurants and interesting museums. Known as a blue collar beach town next to Camp Pendleton, the city has been rejuvenated within the last four years luring tourists and international visitors.

It’s a great vacation destination to park your car and walk or ride a bike throughout the lively surf town. There is a barber shop on every street, a terrific collection of beach art, beer tasting gardens and miles of bike paths running along the beach.

Here are 10 Fun Spots to Visit While In Oceanside:

1. Stroll into the California Surf Museum

Learn about the first surfboard made from a redwood plank, various longboards and who invented the first foam surf board. There is a short movie about Bethany Hamilton that is interesting to watch. Be sure to check out the surf gift shop. cam@surfmuseum.org 312 Pier View Way (760)721-6876.

2. Check into the newer SpringHill Suites Marriott Oceanside

Step inside the surf decor suite resort located near one of the beach surfing beaches and train station. Come by train or park the car. Everything you need to see or do at this location is within walking or biking distance. Each spacious studio suite has a flat-screen TV and free Wi-Fi access. Our room 309 had a small balcony with incredible views of the beach and the pier. In the morning there is a complimentary breakfast buffet with hot and cold breakfast items including scrambled eggs, waffles and oatmeal. Up at the roof top is a pool, hot spa and 24-hour fitness center, all offering ocean and city views. There is a cozy fire pit near the front of the hotel and up on the 2nd floor are two fireplaces with lounge sofas.

110 N. Meyers St. (760)722-1003.

3. Stroll The Longest Pier in California.

It’s a wooden 1,942 feet historical pier that attracts visitors, locals, fisherman and families. With Ruby’s Diner at the end of the pier, don’t be surprised to see many on the pier sipping Ruby’s shakes or dining on burgers and fries inside. In the middle of the pier is a shop selling snacks, souvenir and fishing pole rentals.

4. Oceanside Museum of Art

Stroll inside a delightful space to admire the 100 Artists, 100 Years exhibit until July 26, 2015. In partnership with The San Diego Museum of Art Artists Guild chronicles a 100 year historical perspective of 100 artists who live or lived and worked in San Diego. There are Plein Air painters and contemporary masters displayed as paintings, sculptures, drawings, printmaking, photography, ceramics, architecture and furniture making. 704 Pier View Way (760-435-3720.

5. Sip a flight of Craft Beer

At Stone Company Store out on their picturesque stone patio filled with wood, stone and plants. Sit in one of the wooden lounge chairs or at a communal table with friends after stepping up to the small tasting inside. Boasting 20 rotating taps offering beer flights, bottled beer, and growler fills. Guests can order four, eight or 16 ounce pours. There is Stone merchandise for purchase. The Stone Company opens at 11 a.m. 310 N. Tremont St. (760)529-0002.

6. Rent a bike and explore Oceanside

Under the pier is Wheel Fun Rentals offering cruiser bike, tandem, or speciality bike for an hour or for the day. There are paved bike lanes on the strand next to the beach. Ride a bike to explore the area around the pier, Oceanside harbor, lighthouse and village, and take the nine mile path under and next to the freeway to the historical Mission San Luis Rey.

7. Hello Betty Fish House

Located at the corner of SpringHill Suites is a newer surfing theme restaurant serving lunch, happy hour and dinner. Come here at sunset to sip craft cocktails, craft beers or a glass of wine while nibbling on avocado toast, fish tacos, salads or fresh grilled fish with two sides. It’s fun with it’s eclectic surf culture decor and sparkling dune buggy. Lot’s of flat screen televisions feature surfing shows and sporting events. Upstairs is a great deck offering drinks and made-to-order snacks while enjoying views of the beach and Oceanside pier.
211 Mission Ave. Oceanside, (760)722-1008.

8. Grab a Red Cup of Yogurt

Just behind the SpringHill Suites is a self serve yogurt shop offering a variety of 10+ flavors that are non-fat, low-fat, lactose free and no sugar added. They also have 50 toppings to choose from fresh fruit, candy, brownies and cookies. You pay .39 cents per oz. 4259 Oceanside Blvd. Oceanside, (760)842-8738.

9. Hollywood History in Oceanside

Between SpringHill Suites and the beach is one of the oldest homes in Oceanside – the Graves House. The Queen Anne cottage was built in 1887 as a vacation beach home. If it looks familiar, the home was used in the 1986 hit movie Top Gun with Tom Cruise. There is a drawing of Top Gun near the front window.

10. Oceanside Harbor Village

Stroll around the Cape Cod looking ports-of-call among a harbor filled with leisure, sail and fishing boats. Shop, eat, and drink while visiting the colorful cluster of small family-owned shops, restaurants and a sportsfishing center that line the boardwalk on the south side of Oceanside Harbor next to the iconic lighthouse. You will hear seals barking near the breakwater. 260-280 South Harbor Drive.

Come see the new and improved Oceanside. It’s a fun city to rest, relax and enjoy the Pacific Ocean.

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