Can you tell me about San Diego/Carlsbad/surrounding areas?

I will be moving in approximately six months or so, I need to garner all the information I can about these areas…but I prefer a more personal point of view rather then the statistics. :slight_smile:

Pluses, minuses, whatever you have…all opinions wanted and needed! Thank you!

Hi again.

As I said in the other thread, I live in the next town south from Carlsbad (i.e. Encinitas). Carlsbad is a beautiful coastal city with a moderate climate, good schools, nice neighborhoods, good access to nearby cultural activities (shopping, outdoor concerts, Legoland) and of course a very nice beach. Carlsbad is generally considered to be a middle to upper-middle class community. Carlsbad is spread over a large area with both coastal communities and inland ones coming together to consitute a diverse whole.

Home prices and the general cost of living are high everywhere here in San Diego County. Gasoline prices are consistently the highest in the nation. There is a communter rail line that passes through Carlsbad offering access to Downtown San Diego and points North. Also, Amtrak passes by on its way to Los Angeles (2 hours away). The main transportation artery of Interstate 5 runs North/South through town.

Carlsbad is home to several high tech companies in the fields of biomedical research and manufacturing, sporting goods design. defense contracting, etc.

The entire county is a paradise for active people who like outdoor sports. In just over an hour you can drive from the beach to the mountains and on to the desert. Surfing, swimming, running, walking, hiking, camping, fishing, kayaking, birdwatching, etc. are all available locally.

Mexico is about 1 hour to the south and Los Angeles is 2 hours to the north. San Diego County is the second largest county in the US (after San Bernadino) and is filled with numerous distinctive communities.

Besides the world-famous Zoo, San Diego does have a few worthwhile museums*, and a decent little wine region near Temecula.

*I’m thinking of the Timken Gallery in Balboa Park. When I was there in the 1970s it was a privately run museum that was small, but of very high quality. However, they seem to have no Internet presence whatsover. Are there any San Diegans here who can tell me if it still exists?

Also, by dint of what James Lileks would call “ingenious dual-use technology”, Amtrak passes right back to San Diego again using those very same tracks. Incidentally, in many stretches of the line there is only one set of tracks; how they manage to have about 12 round trips a day, plus sharing with freights, I don’t know.

IANASD (I Am Not A San Diegan) but I was there for a week this past May, and I can vouch for the Timken still being in operation, and it still has free admission. There are a whole slew of museums in Balboa Park, on a wide variety of themes (natural history, cultural history, various arts, automobiles, astronomy, etc.).

Old Town has the best Mexican-American food I’ve ever had.

This is all helping immensely…thank you guys! Right now we live in rural (very rural) Oregon, so this is going to be quite a change…but we are ready for a change. The most daunting thing is the cost of living and the popoulation difference.

Encintas-I will be attending college again, we have three school age kids, and my husband works for State of California. For the past ten years we have lived in rural communites, so this will be quite the culture shock for us all I know! We have friends there though, so they will be helping with the transition.

lie not with dragons I think you will adjust just fine. Looking forward to meeting you someday.

Greater San Diego also boasts a couple of major nudist/clothing optional resorts, and I think Black’s Beach is still clothing optional. I won’t provide links for fear of violating board policy, but the names of the other two places are Sun Island Resort about 20 miles east of downtown SD and the De Anza Springs resort near Jucumba.

I haven’t been there but they look pretty good from their websites.

Just wanted to thank everybody for their input again…I look forward to moving there!

There are more retired US Navy people living in and around San Diego than anywhere else.

I spent a few days there in 1982, and it impressed me as a wonderful city.

The neat thing about San Diego is that it has several very culturally unique neighborhoods that feature restaurants, museums, shopping, etc. that are distinctive to each.

As another poster mentioned, Old Town is a fabulous place to find authentic Mexican food (even though Tijuana is so close, getting there, and especially back, can be a pain if you drive and with all of the post-9/11 security measures). Ocean Beach (OB) is a very laid-back, eclectic place with a great vibe. It’s my favorite neighborhood (because it is so low-key, friendly and kinda hippy). Then you’ve got the trendier section that is the Gaslamp. It’s cool to walk through and there are a couple of good steak places, but be prepared to see lots of tourists.

There’s also Hillcrest, which is cool and fun and full of really nice (and cute) gay folks. Hillcrest has great restaurants, cafes, clubs…it’s my second favorite spot. Mission Beach has the roller coaster and beach that’s swamped on weekends. Still, can be a good place for a meal and a drink…Pacific Beach can be, too, though the crowd is definitely younger.

Since you’re moving there, it would be a wonderful opportunity to explore. The beaches are amazing, the climate is incredible, they have a football and baseball team (just got back from a Padres game and it was lots of inexpensive fun), hiking, kayaking and other outdoorsy things to do.

Some links to the San Diego Reader and Union Tribune: