North San Diego Staycation

Every weekend is a vacation when you live in Oceanside. And having out-of-towners visit is a perfect opportunity to be a tourist in your own town. With no pre-scheduled plans, we let the weekend unfold naturally.  Homebase was literally our home in Oceanside and we never needed to travel far for incredible food and entertainment.

Dolphin Watching
Friday stole the show. We took a walk on Cassidy Beach and lucked out on an incredible sighting of dolphins. They were very close to the shore and were jumping out of the water. I’ve never seen anything like it.


The Flying Pig 
Arguable the best restaurant in Oceanside, my friends were thrilled with their specials: Duroc pork chop on grits (my personal favorite) and the Churrasco J’Dour (their steak special) which tonight was a rib eye. They raved about the meals for the remainder of the weekend. ​

The Flying Pig. Photo courtesy of @flyingpigpubkitchen

Buccaneer Cafe
Saturday morning was breakfast burritos at the Buccaneer Cafe, another local favorite. It’s amazing that they dish out such delicious breakfast standards and unique plates from a tiny shack.  And you can’t beat the setting with the beach to the west and a park to the east. ​The breakfast tacos are my personal favorite.  You have your choice of red arbol chile beef, Kailua pork, and tomatillo verde chicken.

Torrey Pines Reserve
For the best coastal views, head south to Del Mar for Torrey Pines State Reserve. Be warned that it’s popular and swarmed by locals and visitors alike on the weekends and holidays. Come early to beat the crowd and maybe score street parking. The rest of us have to pay the $15 park entrance which parks us at the base of the cliffs. Visit the visitors center at the top to learn see local species up close and learn about the areas first settlers. Then take a trail towards the coast. If you’re lucky, you might spot dolphins or whales.

Following heavy winter rains, Torrey Pines was the greenest I’ve ever seen it and blooming with wild flowers.

Stone Company Store – Oceanside
Wrap up you trip with a visit to the tasting room of San Diego’s best known brewery for a couple tasters and to pick up souvenirs.

Image courtesy of

Do you have a favorite spot in Oceanside? Leave me a comment.