Spanning just over 21 square miles of land, Encinitas is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream. With 87.1% of homes being built before the year 2000, and a median home price of $1,187,250, Encinitas holds a rich history of being one of the strongest markets in San Diego. At first glance, you’ll see a laid-back coastal city that offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, but there’s far more to this city than what meets the eye. Renowned for its incredible waves, Encinitas is a surfer’s paradise. Here you’ll experience the best of what Southern California has to offer. Explore the San Elijo Lagoon, hike Annie’s Canyon Trail, and then step on over to Leucadia for happy hour and a glass of the famous sangria at Le Papagayo. You’ll quickly learn that there’s no such thing as a dull moment in Encinitas. If you’re having trouble figuring out where to start, no worries we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite places!
Moonlight State Beach
Once renowned for its midnight picnics, Moonlight State Beach is the most popular beach in Encinitas. With three sand volleyball courts, a tennis court, and fire pits, this beach is a hub for outdoor activities. Just a few steps off the sand, you’ll find excellent shopping and restaurants. Ideal for a family excursion or a solo outing, Moonlight State Beach gives new meaning to having fun in the sun.
San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve & Nature Center
If you find the great outdoors continually calling to you, then the San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve and Nature Center is the place for you! This 979-acre reserve allows you to fully immerse yourself in the diverse ecosystems found here. Packed with tons of outdoor activities like hiking trails and scavenger hunts for the kiddos, you’ll have to take a couple of trips to experience it all. San Elijo offers some of Southern California’s most beautiful views, making it the perfect addition to weddings and other special events.
Annie’s Canyon Trail
Perfect for hikers at any skill level, Annie’s Canyon Trail, affectionately known as the ACT, is the perfect afternoon adventure for the entire family. Become one with nature as you traverse through the narrow sandstone walls and up to the trail’s peak. This slice of the San Elijo Lagoon was once lost but has now been revitalized and reopened – allowing you to truly enjoy breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and the rest of the lagoon.
La Paloma Theatre
A staple of the United States since the Roaring Twenties – La Paloma Theatre remains a cornerstone of the Encinitas community to this day. Having withstood the test of time, this historic theater has seen many iconic moments in film. Originally constructed in 1928, La Paloma became one of the first theaters in the world to show movies with sound. Celebrities like Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, and countless others have graced this theatre with their talents. Experience it for yourself and take a step into yesteryear when you visit this staple in cinema.
Solterra Winery and Kitchen
Blending traditional aesthetics with modern amenities, Solterra Winery and Kitchen is a must-experience attraction. Whether you’re just visiting or looking to make Encinitas your home, you’ll truly savor a taste of San Diego with this wine crafted from locally sourced vineyards. With over 20 varieties of reds, whites, ports, rosé, and late harvest wines – Solterra Winery and Kitchen has a flavor blend for every kind of wine Connoisseur.
Le Papagayo Leucadia
One of the most popular eateries in all of North County, Le Papagayo Leucadia is a culinary gem. Located on the historic Coast Highway 101, this restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner – making it the perfect start or end to any journey. With a unique menu that features fusions of Mediterranean and Latin cuisine, you’re bound to find your new favorite meal. Come on a Saturday night and enjoy live music inside their gallery inspired dining room.
Union Kitchen & Tap
If you’re looking to enjoy a great meal after spending the day enjoying the sun and surf, then Union Kitchen & Tap is the spot for you. Just steps away from some of California’s best surf spots, this local hot spot offers seasonal menus full of American classics made from locally sourced ingredients – including their very own patio veggie garden. Best part? Each meal pairs wonderfully with local brews and wines. Try the Union Burger when you go… Trust us, it’s in the name.