Carlsbad (California)

Carlsbad is a city in the north end of San Diego County in Southern California.


San Francisco built out of LEGO bricks

Carlsbad has a relaxed oceanfront atmosphere away from the madness of LA, but close enough for easy access. It has beaches that are better maintained than its northern neighbor Oceanside. South of Carlsbad is the beach town of Encinitas.

Carlsbad is also a favorite destination for foreign tourists, especially Germans.

For families with young children, Carlsbad's biggest draw is Legoland California, a theme park based on the popular toy line with sculptures made of the little plastic bricks and lots of Lego-themed rides.

Get in

By car

Carlsbad is located about 30 miles north of San Diego on Interstate 5. The Coast Highway (County Route S21) passes through Carlsbad as well.

By rail

Carlsbad has two train stations: Carlsbad Village (on State Street just north of Grand Avenue) on the north side and Carlsbad Poinsettia (on Avenida Encinas between Palomar Airport Road and Poinsettia Lane) on the south side. Both can be reached via the COASTER regional rail line, which runs between Oceanside (northern neighbor of Carlsbad) and the Santa Fe Depot in downtown San Diego.

If you are traveling from Los Angeles or Orange County, a limited number of Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner trains (three trains in each direction) stop at both Carlsbad stations. Alternately, take Metrolink's Orange County Line to the Oceanside Transit Center. From the Oceanside Transit Center, take the COASTER, a bus, or a taxi to Carlsbad.

By air

Carlsbad's local Palomar Airport (IATA: CLD) is open to general aviation. In the past, it has served commercial commuter flights but this is no longer the case.

San Diego International Airport (IATA: SAN) is the closest major airport to Carlsbad. From SAN, you may take San Diego Transit's Route 992 bus to the Santa Fe Depot, connect to the COASTER, and get off at the COASTER stations at either Carlsbad Poinsettia or Carlsbad Village.

John Wayne Airport (IATA: SNA) in Orange County is the next closest major airport; the nearest Amtrak/Metrolink stations are in Santa Ana, Tustin, and Irvine.

Get around

The North County Transit District provides public bus service within Carlsbad.


Flower Fields


Carlsbad State Beach



Gluten-Free Dining: If you are on a gluten-free diet you are in for treat. The following restaurants are located in Carlsbad Village and are walking distance from the train station: Pizza Port offers delicious gluten-free pizza and carries gluten-free beers and ciders. For Mexican dining try Garcia's, Norte, and Las Olas all of who can provide gluten-free options. Several Italian restaurants will substitute gluten-free pasta including Caldo Pomodoro and Vigilucci's. O'Sullivan's Irish Pub offers bangers and mash plus traditional corned beef (ask for no whiskey sauce). The Coyote Bar and Grill has an excellent roasted half chicken and other menu options that can be made gluten-free.




Carlsbad State Beach. A beautiful area south of town on the Pacific Coast Highway. Reservations required most dates.

Go next

Routes through Carlsbad

Santa Ana Oceanside  N  S  Encinitas San Diego
Los Angeles Oceanside  N  S  Encinitas San Diego

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Sunday, March 13, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.