How to Experience Carlsbad Beach in California, like a Local


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Carlsbad Beach California is one of those beaches that you usually don’t know much about unless you’re a local. It is one of those places you can have an amazing vacation if you know what to expect.


After doing some extensive research, I decided to find out what makes this beach special and why you should come and see it for yourself.

After doing some exploring I realized it is best to experience it as the locals do. That means spending some time in the city to really get to know what Carlsbad Beach in California is all about.

As a complete guide to knowing what to expect it is better to break down the overall view of Carlsbad Beach California…

Where is Carlsbad Beach California Located?

The shores of Carlsbad Beach in California

Carlsbad Beach is located in Southern California. San Diego, it is about  40-60 minutes from San Diego depending on the traffic. If you are traveling from San Diego International Airport, you should be able to jump on the Freeway 5 North up to the coastline.

Of course, depending where your coming from it and whether traffic is bad or not. Putting it on your GPS will definitely be handy.

It may be far but…

It is worth the drive!

The History of Carlsbad Beach

As history has it, every beach has a story.

Whether near or far.

Carlsbad Beach California also has a story.  History has it that Carlsbad Beach started out with the settlement of the Luseño Indians before the Spanish ever came into the picture following the 18th century.

The city itself was first established as a cattle station in the 1860s and it was located along the “Camino Real” and later settled in by Anglo ranchers.

The name of the cattle station was called “Frazier Station”. History shows it was later renamed after discovering the mineral waters were similar to those in Bohemia.

Later on, when the railway rose, Carlsbad Beaches became a popular destination for tourists to explore, according to a source.    

carlsbad beach boardwalk
Boardwalk of Carlsbad Beach in California

Carlsbad is perfect for any and everybody.


If you’re a family visiting Carlsbad Beach then it is the perfect place to wind down for a family beach vacation. There are many things to do on and near the beach that will keep you entertained for hours.

Solo Travelers

If you love to travel alone or with friends, then do not hesitate to visit. There is everything from kayaking classes to learning how to surf.


There is no better place to capture photography than the amazing beaches of San Diego such as Carlsbad Beach. If you really want to be in for a treat then, definitely come for sunrise and stay for sunset. If you’re looking for a spectacular place in the Carlsbad Beach area then check out this article right here.

Dog Owners

Unfortunately, Carlsbad Beach does NOT allow dogs here. However, do not fret pet owners, there are some places you can still walk with your dog! Check out the article that shows you how your pets can still enjoy the spectacular Carlsbad Beach without being allowed.

What Makes Up Carlsbad Beaches in California

Boardwalk pathway to Beach in Carlsbad Beach in California

The North Beaches of Carlsbad:

People come here to enjoy the beach of course, but the nice thing about the beaches is that it is within walking distance to Carlsbad Village. So if you are here to do some shopping then do not hesitate to check it out.

Explore Carlsbad Village by reading our article on what to expect!

I noticed that a lot of people also love watching the sunset near Harbor Fish Cafe. There are volleyball nets below to catch the spectacular sunset while playing a game.

Tamarack Beach:

Something you will notice here is… mostly surfers. Even though people say it is a surfer’s beach, it is not entirely restricted to surfers. There are areas where you can lay your beach towel and umbrellas.

And there are lifeguard towers here too. Parking is available here at the mini lot in Tamarack Beach. It may be difficult to find parking since it is limited. So if you plan on parking on the beach lot then arrive early!

South Carlsbad State Beach:

Also known as South Carlsbad State Beach Camping where you can camp with an RV or tent. You can hear the amazing crashing of the waves at night. It is the place where you will have beach and camping life all in one.

South Ponto Beach:

This beach has nothing but amazing cliffs and beautiful scenery to take in. If you are a sunset go-er then look no further, but South Ponto Beach! Who doesn’t want to see the beautiful sunset beneath the water? Calling all photographers and videographers here!

Things to check out near Carlsbad Beach California

Carlsbad Beaches in California are gorgeous, but that is not all you can find here. If you are looking to venture out and see other things besides the beach then…

Read on.

There is more to see and do! These things are found near the beach or within Carlsbad itself.

Carlsbad Beach’s not-so-secret Boardwalk/Seawall

Carlsbad Boulevard Seawall sign at Carlsbad Beach in California

The Boardwalk or Seawall, as many have called it, is one of the best places you can jog, run, walk, and ocean gaze, etc. It comes as no surprise that this boardwalk/seawall is one of the local’s favorites to get fresh air.

Though biking is not directly permitted on the boardwalk, I see many people using the bike lanes on the road.

The seawall is a popular paved boardwalk that runs alongside the beach area so you can exercise to your heart’s content. Make no mistake that this is one of those places you want to check out.

Check out the article on what to expect when visiting the Carlsbad Beach boardwalk.

As a photographer, I do enjoy coming here because it’s the perfect place to take beach photography. You simply cannot go wrong with the panoramic view of the Carlsbad Beach area.  

Carlsbad Village

The welcome signage of Carlsbad Village in California

Carlsbad Village is one of those places you need to check out. It is what many would refer to as the “Beach Town” of Carlsbad.

Or maybe that’s what some people see it as.

There are so many reasons why you need to check out this mini beach town for yourself. Not only can you find places to eat here, but you can find all sorts of boutiques, ice cream shops, and stores.

If you are hungry or looking for a coffee shop then walk on over there. It is within walking distance from the beach itself. It is here where you can find your local mom-and-pop shops.

Carlsbad Beach Restaurants

There is plenty of restaurants to choose from. If you’re looking for seafood restaurants by the beach then there are plenty in Carlsbad Village. Some are within walking distance while others are within driving distance.

Flower Fields

Flowers Field in Carlsbad
Beautiful flower fields along driving to Carlsbad Beach

The flower fields are within driving distance of Carlsbad Beach, but it is a seasonal thing. If you are planning to visit Carlsbad Beach in the spring from early March to May, then definitely make it a day trip to visit the Flower Fields too.

If you are hoping to fill your day with other adventurous things then the Flower Fields of Carlsbad are one of those places you want to check out.

Premium Carlsbad Outlets

Okay, so you spent the first couple days of your vacation at the beach and maybe you’re looking for some outlet mall type of shopping.

Then look no further than the Premium Carlsbad Outlets, it is the place you want to go to get some good shopping in.

You can practically find any beach clothes attire here. Although you may have to drive, it is still within the Carlsbad Beach vicinity.


the view of the beach and lighthouse of Carlsbad Beach

Are you ready to soak in some San Diego Beach fun?  Then look no further than some of the best beaches in Southern California.

Carlsbad Beach in California is where it is all happening.

From beach volleyball to beach camping and shopping there is something for everyone.

But the question becomes, what else can I do around or near the Carlsbad area?

Swim at the north beaches of Carlsbad to play volleyball and watch the sunset. At the same time take a stroll to Carlsbad Village where you can find countless mom-and-pop shops along with boutiques and restaurants of all kinds.

Use Tamarack Beach to surf some of the best waves.

Don’t be caught off-guard like many others. Equip yourself with our top favorite 5 essential beach must-haves and avoid common beach pitfalls! 🏖️🌞🌊

1. YETI Wheeled Cooler: Keep your drinks and snacks chilled under the sun.

2. Kelty Tent: Seek refuge from the sun with a lightweight, easy-to-set-up beach tent.

3. BeachBub Umbrella: Stay cool and protected with a durable, stylish UPF beach umbrella.

4. Trailhead Chair: Sit back and relax with a comfortable and sturdy beach chair.

5. CGear Sand-Free Mat Sand Blanket: Keep the sand at bay and stay comfortable with a sand-resistant blanket.

And finally, book in advance a camping spot at the Carlsbad State Beach Campgrounds. You can camp and take to the beach to watch the sunrise and sunset.

This beach has a lot more to offer than its surfing waters and family get-togethers.

Renting a car is one of the best things you can do in Carlsbad to catch some other things to do around the town.

For example, if you want to check out the Carlsbad Premium Outlets then do it for some fair pricing on clothes.

It’s perfect for spending a whole day shopping or even window shopping. Whatever it is you want to do then be sure you make this one of the things to do.

Have you ever visited Carlsbad Beach in California? If so. What do you like doing here?


Jess & Jeanette

Jess and Jeanette, two sisters who founded Unseen Beaches, were inspired by their family’s beach vacations while growing up.

Their passion lies in guiding you toward the most remarkable beach destinations across the U.S., while also protecting and preserving these beautiful coastal treasures! 🌊❤️

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Don’t be caught off-guard like many others. Equip yourself with our Top Favorite 5 Essential Beach Must-Haves and avoid common beach pitfalls! 🏖️🌞🌊

1. YETI Wheeled Cooler: Keep your drinks and snacks chilled under the sun.

2. Kelty Tent: Seek refuge from the sun with a lightweight, easy-to-set-up beach tent.

3. BeachBub Umbrella: Stay cool and protected with a durable, stylish UPF beach umbrella.

4. Trailhead Chair: Sit back and relax with a comfortable and sturdy beach chair.

5. CGear Sand-Free Mat Sand Blanket: Keep the sand at bay and stay comfortable with a sand-resistant blanket.

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