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20 Things to do in Carlsbad During the Summertime

Things to do in Carlsbad during Summertime

Carlsbad is one of those towns that has more fun things to do then you might have time for. From hanging out on the beaches, hiking the lagoon or wine tasting, Carlsbad has you covered in activities. Here are 20 Things to do in Carlsbad Summertime:

1) Beaches: 20 Things to do in Carlsbad Summertime
Carlsbad is located in sunny San Diego County and it has 7 miles of pristine sandy beaches to explore. Bring your surfboard and check out Tamarack Beach or Ponto for some great rides on the waves. Stand-up paddle boarding has also become a very popular activity on the lagoons or at the beach. The boardwalk runs along the beach in Carlsbad and is ideal for bike riding or walking.

2) Carlsbad Village : 
Located in the heart of downtown Carlsbad near the waterfront. Carlsbad is a fun little beach town in north county San Diego. Carlsbad Village is where many of the visitors to town spend most of their time, local boutiques, eateries and hotels are all located near the village including the famous Carlsbad Inn which is a great place to stay while you are in town. Carlsbad Village is very walkable, come and stroll through the streets and get a glimpse of Carlsbad history while you do so.

3) Historical Sites:
Carlsbad Mineral Water & Spa A great way to learn about the history of Carlsbad is to visit the Carlsbad Mineral Water & Spa and taste some of the local alkaline artisan mineral water and maybe even have a relaxed spa treatment while you are there. The city of Carlsbad was named after “Carlsbad, Czechoslovakia the famous spa city in the Czech Republic. Karlovy Vary (Carlsbad) is a spa town in the west Bohemia region of the Czech Republic. Its numerous thermal springs have made it a popular resort since the 19th century.

  • Twin Inns:  This glorious Victorian home was built in 1887 by Gerhard Schutte “The Father of Carlsbad” also the owner of the Carlsbad Land and Mineral Water Company.
    It now houses Sun Diego Board Shop which specializes in Southern California’s active lifestyle, it is a great surf shop with a fabulous sushi restaurant called the Land and Water company and a surf museum. Carlsbad has many historical points of interest in town and the Visitor Center is one of them, located in the old Victorian train station in the middle of town the Visitor Center is easily accessible to obtain additional information about Carlsbad.
    Carlsbad Barrio Museum is located on the corner of Roosevelt and Walnut in the original Lola’s building. The museum houses information about some of the first families to settle in the barrio; the Ramirez and Trejos families came to the Carlsbad Barrio area in 1918.
    • Visit the Barrio Museum to learn about the early days in Carlsbad, how people lived and worked in the neighborhood (barrio).
  • Shipley Magee House is a craftsman home built in 1887 by Samuel Church Smith, one of the founders of the Carlsbad Land and Water Company. It is now home to the Carlsbad Historical Society. Magee’s House also has a beautiful rose & herb garden.
    Leo Carrillo Ranch & Historic Park is a designated Historic National Landmark that was opened to the public in August 2003. Leo Carrillo is a 27 acre historical park that was originally a working ranch owned by the famous actor Leo Carrillo. As an entertainer Leo was highly successful, appearing in 15 major stage plays and over 90+ motion pictures. Leo’s greatest fame however, came from his portrayal of Pancho, the mischievous sidekick to Cisco Kid in the 1950 television series.

4) Shop Carlsbad:

  • Carlsbad Village Shopping:  Carlsbad has some fantastic boutiques in the downtown area. Here is a list of some favorites: Olde Ivy Antiques, Wysh Boutique, The Beat Clothing, Blues & Shoes, Coolest Shoes, Linda’s Gifts, Mermaids, Aranelle, Double Take and Retail Therapy.
    Village Faire Shopping Center is another great option for browsing the local shops in Carlsbad and it is located at the corner of Carlsbad Village drive and Carlsbad blvd.
  • Carlsbad Premium Outlet Mall features 90 stores offering exceptional designer named items. The Outlet Mall has some extraordinary savings of 25% to 65% on your favorite brands.. The mall has an impressive collection of designers and leading brands including Banana Republic, Coach, Jones New York, Polo Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, True Religion and many more. Dining is also available in the mall, Blaze Pizza is one of my favorites.
  • The Forum Carlsbad is another great place to spend the day shopping and having fun. The Forum has an elite collection of merchants, including Victoria Secret, Free People, J Crew, Apple and many other designers brands. Dining options include Buca de Beppo and Casa de Bandini.

Carlsbad Art & Antique Mall A must do shopping experience in Carlsbad. The Carlsbad Village Art & Antique Mall has over 15,000 square feet and over 100 shops. It has a street faire atmosphere type of atmosphere, stroll along the booths and find your secret treasures.

5) Wine Tasting: Carlsbad has several great wine tasting locations in town:

Witch Creek Winery in Carlsbad, it is considered an Urban Winery’ in that there is no vineyard on the property, they source their grapes from various locations including Paseo Robles in Northern California, Fallbrook and Valley de Guadelupe in Baja California. They then blend the grapes using traditional wine making techniques and create some fabulous red wines.

  • Paon Wine Bar is a great place to sample fantastic French wines.
  • Relm Wine Bistro is another fabulous place to relax and listen to music while sipping wine and enjoying a delicious cheese platter.
  • Napatini
  • Oak & Elixir

6) Carlsbad Breweries:
San Diego County, California has been called “the Craft Beer Capital of America. There are more than 100 breweries in the county. As of 2014 San Diego ranked among the 50 largest brewers in the US. North County San Diego Highway 78 from Oceanside to Julian is affectionately called the “Hop Highway”, because of all of the local breweries. And Carlsbad is not far behind them with heavy hitters like Karl Strauss Carlsbad and Pizza Port and 83 Degrees , the brewer business in Carlsbad is booming.

  • Scavanger’s Beer & Adventure Tours is another great way to experience Carlsbad’s Beer culture. It is an all-inclusive beer adventure. Ride along with us in their vintage 1973 Swiss Military Safari Jeeps around the sunny Carlsbad coast. Sample tasty IPA’s, Farmhouse ales, Lagers, Porters, and Stouts at some of San Diego’s coolest breweries. Check out Carlsbad Beer & BBQ Safari at

7) Carlsbad Food Tours: 
Carlsbad Food Tours is a culinary & history tour of Carlsbad Village. The tours are facilitated by gourmet docents(tour guides) who have a love and passion for Carlsbad’s eateries. The goal is to provide both a fun and fulfilling experience as we walk (and eat) our way through Carlsbad’s most scenic and historic neighborhoods.
Expect the tour to be about three hours as you learn about the origins of Carlsbad, to what we see today. Throughout the tour, you’ll sample unique local favorites from neighborhood restaurants, cafes, and specialty food stores.All food tastings are included in the ticket price and enough for an average lunch or light dinner. Carlsbad Food Tours provides unique and specially-selected food tastings served from locally-owned and operated specialty food shops and ethnic or local eateries. Stops include one of Carlsbad’s most romantic restaurant, tasty deserts from local eateries that have been made from recipes past on from generation to generation.Award-winning wines that are grown in California, will be a delight for your taste buds. California wines are some of the best wines in the world. Enjoy wine tasting at one of Carlsbad’s Urban Wineries.Tasting Locations include: Gregorio’s Italian Restaurant, Witch Creek Winery, Caldo Pomodoro Italian Restaurant, Humble Olive Oils, Cafe Topes, Cafe Panini and Chocolate Bar and Gaia Gelato.

8) Carlsbad Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch: 
Relax and take a few hours to indulge your inner nature lover in a place that is filled with vibrant colored flowers. The Flower Fields is home to the famous Giant Tecolote Ranunculus Flower that blooms there at spring time every year. When the flowers are in bloom it looks like Holland has arrived in Carlsbad. It is a spectacular view of the blooms on a hillside overlooking the Pacific Ocean. It is a great place to take family photos while strolling the gardens. Prime time for viewing the Flower Fields is March – May.

9) Omni La Costa Resort & Spa
Carlsbad’s ultimate luxury retreat and top ranked spa with a 36 hole world famous Golf Course. It is currently is home to two PGA Tours. And is also a member of the Historic Hotels of America.
10) Making Music Museum: 
Making Music Museum is an organization that presents visitors with an interactive journey through a century of instrument innovations that shaped American popular music. The Making Museum has over 450 vintage instruments and hundreds of audio and video clips, that provides a unique, memorable and educational adventure for all to enjoy!
11) Gemological Institute of American: 2
GIA World Headquarters is the premier gem studies school located in Carlsbad, CA. Gia has state-of-the-art classrooms and laboratories for the study of gems. Gia is also an internationally recognized museum on gems.
12) Arts & Entertainment: 

  • New Village Arts Theatre: An award winning professional art theatre in the heart of Carlsbad. The theatre has a wide variety of events and shows including highly rated musicals and plays. It also serves as a music venues for local bands and groups. The New Village Arts Founder Studio is an onsite artist workspace located within the center.
    Carlsbad Village Theatre: Opening date for the theatre was Feb 8th, 1927 with the showing of the film called “It” starring Ms. Clara Bow the famous actress. The theatre was originally owned and operated by the Samuels family and cost a total of $40,000 to build. It now serves the community entertainment venue for cinema screening presentations as well as live stage and music events.
  • Carlsbad Music Festival:  Music by the sea usually takes place in the month of August.
  • TGIF Concerts in the Park:  Eat, Drink, Dance & be Merry, when the music stops it is time to go home.

13) Camp Carlsbad:  

  • Carlsbad State Park Campgrounds, a camp by the sea is a special place to be. Carlsbad State Park has a large campgrounds that can accommodate RV’s and tents. The park has 220 campsites and two day-use areas. Ponto Day-Use Area, south of the campground, has restroom. South Carlsbad State Beach is reached by exiting Interstate 5 at Palomar Airport Road in the City of Carlsbad and heading south along the Pacific Coast Highway (Carlsbad Blvd).

14) Bike the Coast: 
Pacific Coast Highway 101 runs right through the middle of Carlsbad. Bicycling the coast of California is on many bucket lists. The Coast Highway has a wide bicycling lane the goes along the coastline in Carlsbad.

  • Pedego Electric Bikes Conveniently located in the Village of Carlsbad, and just minutes to the beach, Pedego Carlsbad offers electric and pedal bicycle sales, rentals, tours and service.
  • Nikaro Outdoors is also located in downtown Carlsbad. The bike tours provide epic rides with the mighty Pacific Ocean as a backdrop as we pass through many seaside town.

Carlsbad recently launched a Walk & Bike Campaign The City of Carlsbad, Circulate San Diego and the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition announced today the launch of Walk + Bike Carlsbad, a campaign to promote walking and biking in Carlsbad, just in time for those seeking fitness and lifestyle changes in to promote walking and biking in Carlsbad, come and join the fun.

15) Sport Events: 

  • Carlsbad Triathlon ranks among the nation’s longest running triathlons and is for everybody: from first-timers to elites, and their friends and family. It is a sprint distance race, consisting of a 1K open water ocean Swim, which is well marked with buoys, followed by a 25K Bike and a 5K Run. The roads are wide and closed to traffic—very safe! The course is mostly flat with a couple of rolling areas. The course begins at Tamarack Surf Beach and follows the coastline of Carlsbad, past our scenic beaches, lagoons and wildlife preserve. It boasts an ocean swim, a rolling bike course and a smooth run for the finish. Save the date: July 10th, 2016.

16) Carlsbad Street Faire/Farmers Market
The one day street faire is the largest in the nation, more than 100,000 people will take in the beauty of our seaside city while browsing through unique booths for unusual and distinct items. The Carlsbad Village Faire will take place on May 1, 2016. Each year, the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce hosts the faire in May and November.

  • Carlsbad Farmers Market: Wednesday afternoon from 3-7pm on State street.

17)  Golf Carlsbad: 20 Things to do in Carlsbad Summer 2016
Did you know that Carlsbad is considered the Golf Capital of the US. Carlsbad’s idyllic year round climate has quietly transformed this coastal town into Titanium Valley, the sport’s manufacturing mecca. Golf is King in Carlsbad: Calloway Golf Company the world’s largest manufacturer of golf clubs is located in Carlsbad. As is Taylor Made Golf Company, their nearest competitor. Cobra Golf Inc. is their number 3 competitor and they are also stationed in here in town. Not to mention the world renowned fairways in Carlsbad: Titleist, Odyssey and Lynx. Now if you are looking for golf apparel try Ashworth, then you can look the part while relaxing and golfing in Carlsbad.

Here are a few favorite Golf Courses to practice your swing at:
• Omni La Costa Golf Resort
• The Crossings at Carlsbad
• Aviara Golf and Resort

18) Kid Friendly Activities

  • Legoland California is a theme park and miniature park located in Carlsbad, California, based on the Lego toy brand.
  • Sea Life Aquarium is designed to be a child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active, hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and opportunities to have up close and personal encounters with a variety of sea creatures. A visit to SEA LIFE® is an experience like no other!

19) Water Sports:

  • Surfing Carlsbad is always a great entertainment option for those wanting to experience the California lifestyle at it’s best. Just grab your board and head down to the beach. If you need lessons here are a few places to check out:
    • So Cal Surf
    • Surf Lessons Carlsbad
    • Surfin Fire
  • Stand-up Paddle Boarding at the Carlsbad Lagoon: Stand Up Paddle Boarding, is one of thee most versatile sports out there. Today, Paddle Boarders can be found on virtually every body of water including rivers, lakes, oceans, estuaries, and lagoons. One can easily see the attraction of this sport. Paddle boarding is easier, less stressful, especially if you are not a surfer, anyone can do it, it is a lot of fun, and it is incredibly good for your mental and physical health. For equipment rentals Carlsbad Lagoon does water rentals for SUP boards, wave runners, ski boats, kayaks and canoes. For lessons 2 Standup Guys is a great option for learning the sport. And if you are an experienced paddle boarder that wants to experience something different, try Floating Yogis, this will take paddle boarding to a whole new level.

20) Hiking in Carlsbad:
The City of Carlsbad has nearly 50 miles of trails, supporting a healthy active lifestyle for it’s residents and visitors.

  • Batiquitos Lagoon Hiking Trails
  • Bueno Vista Lagoon Hiking Trails 
  • Aviara Hiking Trails