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An Insider’s Guide to Shopping in Oceanside

A new crop of indie boutiques is making the SoCal surf town a must-stop for anyone interested in creative retail therapy.


By Andrew Bender

Over the last few years, shopping in Oceanside has evolved from an afterthought to a magnet, as a new crop of independent boutiques draws in locals and visitors alike. Collectively, they represent the easy-breezy O’side vibe that the SoCal destination is gaining a reputation for.


You don’t have to go very far from The Seabird to catch some of that style, thanks to The Ozone, a lifestyle shop located at our sister resort next door, Mission Pacific. The shop’s creative director/buyer Karen Meena calls it “an eclectically designed space to discover art, vintage objects, adornments, and one-of-a-kind creations unique to SoCal.” The shop’s wares include fashion, beauty, home design, jewelry, accessories, books, and gifts. It also hosts events for local designers and artists. 



The Ozone at Mission Pacific.


Meena has a bead on the rest of the Oceanside shopping scene, and she shared some recommendations with us. Most shops are located on or just off Coast Highway, the city’s (and California’s) main drag, making navigating a snap whether you’re exploring by car, rental bike, or on foot. You might start a couple miles away in the South Oceanside neighborhood (“South O” to its many friends), working back toward the resort. 


In South O, Captain’s Helm blends vintage and modern, both with an aesthetic of undeniable cool. It has you covered with both substance and style, whether your tastes run to a throwback leather or jean jacket, little black dress, rock tour T-shirt, or contemporary design items you didn’t know you needed — knit shopping bags, berry bowls, wooden whisk brooms, or eye-catching wall art. While there, get fortified for your retail therapy adventure at the onsite coffee shop, Captain’s Grounds. 


Nearby, Meena says, “Reap & Sow stocks local wellness brands and keeps locals tuned into the best in eco-beauty, health, and wellness.” This family business and self-proclaimed “lifestyle apothecary” is also ahead of its time, having offered natural, sustainable, toxin-free, and zero-waste products since 2014, well before those became everyday watchwords. From beauty products to essential oils, handmade jewelry to teas and herbal remedies, it’s all good for you — and the environment. 


Heading back toward town, Sea Hive Marketplace is where “locals shop weekly to add to their vintage clothing, jewelry and design collections,” Meena says. Sea Hive calls itself a “massive mall o’ vintage,” and its 13,000 square feet house some 100 vendors.


A repurposed 1930s-era gasoline station is now home to Rising Co. “It’s a community collective of local designers and artists and one of our favorite places to feel the local vibe,” Meena exclaims. Case in point: handmade handbags by Rais Case, personalized jewelry from Tessa Lane, and Feather 4 Arrow, a kids’ clothing and lifestyle brand imbued with an attitude that’s pure Southern California. Meena also recommends the in-house coffee and tea shop and weekend events in Rising Co.’s parking lot. 



Brixton started in Oceanside before taking Instagram by storm. The Oceanside retail location is just as picture-worthy as the cool apparel.


Another go-to hub is Tremont Collective, home to a local coffee shop, surf shop, bottle shop, and wildly popular hat and apparel brand Brixton, which was started by a group of friends way back when in an Oceanside garage. If you need a new sun hat, you won’t want to miss stopping by here.  


Surfing and skateboarding culture are woven into the very fabric of San Diego County. Experience them at Surf Ride, which has won Retailer of the Year from the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association. It offers a dizzying selection of boards for gnarly waves or the perfect Ollie, plus the right gear and clothing to rock the look. Never surfed? Take a lesson from one of their experienced instructors. 


And speaking of water, even humble H2O gets its place in the sun here in Oceanside. Urbn Wtr Company sells its own alkaline water, treated via a 13-step process that helps the body both hydrate and detoxify (Urbn Wtr also supplies the drinking water for The Seabird), alongside bottles and flasks to make the folks back home go “Where’dja get that?” 


Back downtown, the Oceanside Museum of Art is one of the region’s hidden gems. Meena calls it “small but amazing, with exciting exhibits highlighting California artists.” Its Museum Store is like a gallery of Southern California-based makers of painting and photography, textile and fiber arts, ceramics, mixed media, timeless jewelry, and even elegant basketry. The result: one-of-a-kind pieces with a real sense of place. 


And if your visit coincides with one of Oceanside’s popular street markets, you’re in luck. Thursdays, downtown streets are closed off for the morning Farmer’s Market — for California’s bounty from produce to prepared foods — and the evening Sunset Market featuring eclectic crafts, an international food court, and live music. At the monthly First Friday Art Walk, the focus turns to dozens of local creators showing their paintings, sculptures, home décor, and jewelry; it’s along Artist Alley, a side street well worth a visit anytime for its Instagrammable collection of murals. 




Looking for a Spa in Oceanside? Get That SoCal Glow at Sunny’s Spa and Beauty Lounge

When staying at The Seabird, you don’t have to go far to find the best spa in Oceanside. 


By Andrew Bender

Sunny’s Spa and Beauty Lounge at The Seabird offers more than just a top-notch massage, facial, hair treatment, body work, or mani-pedi. Spa Director Marissa Edwards calls it “a full immersion experience” — an alchemy of natural spa products, meditative techniques, and therapists whose sole intention is your wellbeing.


Since opening in 2021, Sunny’s Spa has quickly become the seaside town’s go-to relaxation spot and the leading spa in Oceanside, perfect for Mother’s Day, a wedding day (an array of beauty services, including blowouts and makeup are on the menu), or any day. 


Arriving through the spa’s bright yellow doors, each guest is greeted with their choice of bubbles or herbal tea. After slipping into The Seabird’s signature, plush seersucker robe, head to the Lookout lounge to relax with the ocean views and, as Edwards notes, “the natural soundtrack of Oceanside Beach,” as you prepare for your treatment. 


The Look

Edwards calls the spa’s design “inspired by the good-hearted energy of Oceanside,” effortlessly blending sustainability, minimalism, inclusivity, and “updated twists on traditional relaxation spaces.” 


Taking its cues from nature, she says that the spa’s color palette is intentionally minimal and cool, with clean whites accented with blond woods and splashes of blue from nautical to teal to sky. “Artwork enhances the relevance to the natural environment of the region,” she says. 


While other spas often offer the classic Mediterranean grotto experience, Edwards says, “We’ve transformed ours to fit our modern-day space. We call this special space The Cove, combining dry warming stone benches with radiant heat, cooling mist, and aromatherapy sanarium which transforms the sauna into a tropical bath. All together, it’s a much-needed respite for stress relief, mood enhancement, and immune and respiratory system boost.”


Even the lighting is thoughtfully calibrated for a residential rather than a commercial spa feel. The result, she says, is “a subtle mix of calming and life-infused energy.”


The Must-Try Treatments



One of Edwards’ unmissable treatments is the Healing Cocoon. It’s 75 minutes of sea salt and botanical body scrub followed by a marine body mask infused with algae, white tea, copper and zinc peptides. The scrub increases circulation, softens, and exfoliates, while the body mask helps plump, firm tone, and deeply moisturize the skin.


Another is the Deep Sea Anti-Aging Facial, which, she says, “visibly smoothes fine lines, brightens dark spots, deeply hydrates, releases facial tension, and stimulates collagen production.” A combination of white algae, white wine, white tea, and copper peptides blended with hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, probiotics, and an intense marine-based oxygen serum works together to “give your skin an anti-aging boost” in just 90 minutes.


For couples tying the knot at The Seabird, Edwards recommends the signature Soul Ritual. “Perfect for the bride, groom, or both, relaxing for the body and connecting with your soul, or soul mate,” she says, through an exfoliating body scrub, healing wrap, full body massage, aromatherapy sound bath, breath work and special attention to the scalp, hands, and feet.


For the expectant mom, the Family-to-Be treatment combines a prenatal massage, baby bump facial, and an oceanfront family photo session.


And in honor of Mother’s Day, Sunny’s Spa will feature two special offers all May: Mom & Me takes mothers and their adult daughters through four hours of a manicure, pedicure, massage or facial and poolside lunch, while Soothe Your Soul is just for the special mom in your life. 


“Rooted in the ocean,” Edwards says, “this package encourages a full-day escape with our vagus nerve meditative massage, deep sea anti-aging facial, manicure, pedicure, and a poolside lunch.”

View all treatments here.


The Team



A spa is only as good as its expert therapists and estheticians, and Sunny’s Spa has you covered. 


“Our providers, all southern California locals, bring a combined mastery of healing arts and beauty expertise,” Edwards says. “While classically trained, as a team we find ways to infuse new trends seamlessly, often introducing guests to traditional therapies like vibrational sound and gua sha sculpt, all with our current-day twist.”


The Products

True to Sunny’s Spa coastal focus, spa products come from OSEA, based just up the Southern California coast. “[Through this partnership], we have brought our most restorative and beneficial resource, the Pacific Ocean, right into the treatment room,” Edwards says.


OSEA’s sustainable, vegan, cruelty-free, and climate-neutral products are made with high quality natural ingredients — without colors, dyes, and synthetics — incorporating elemental ingredients like salts, clays, essential oils, and seaweeds from around the world.


Additionally, at the spa’s retail counter, guests can craft their own essential oil blends — whether the goal is to unwind for a good night’s sleep or feel reinvigorated for a night on the town — in addition to choosing pre-made potions.


Visit Sunny’s Spa in Oceanside

For more information, please contact the spa or follow @sunnysspaandbeauty on Instagram for more updates and a behind-the-scenes look at Sunny’s. 





What to Do for Mother’s Day in Oceanside


By Alana Morgan

Mother’s Day should be special for all moms and mother figures alike…it should also be a relaxing day for the whole family! Less than two hours driving from Los Angeles and only 45 minutes from San Diego, Oceanside offers an easy way to enjoy a Mother’s Day escape. (Don’t want to deal with driving? You can take Metrolink’s Orange County Line following the scenic SoCal coast to Oceanside, or conveniently hop on an Amtrak train from both L.A. and San Diego.)


Once in the seaside town, there are plenty of things to do for Mother’s Day in Oceanside. Even better? They’re all just steps from The Seabird.


Savor a Mother’s Day Brunch



First things first, make sure to make a reservation for Mother’s Day brunch. At Piper, an elevated Mother’s Day brunch is available May 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Known for its fresh, flavorful dishes drawing from the region’s best small farms and artisanal purveyors, Piper’s Mother’s Day brunch menu is sure to delight diners of all ages thanks to an array of carefully prepared and made-to-order dishes, including live carving stations, local pastries and baked good, and charcuterie and seafood platters featuring a bounty of SoCal specialities. 


Sound too good to pass up? Book your table here.



Be Pampered With a Spa Day



A spa day becomes extra soothing with family-focused treatments. At Oceanside’s sophisticated spa, Sunny’s Spa and Beauty Lounge, the expert team of therapists have designed special packages for Mother’s Day, complete with added perks. For a grownup getaway, the Mom and Me Getaway includes your choice of massage or facial, paired with a manicure, pedicure, and lunch credit to enjoy at The Seabird’s pool.


Meanwhile, for those in need of a longer escape, the Soothe Your Soul spa journey includes a vagus nerve meditative massage — using steaming aromatic compresses, gentle neck, body, and cranial techniques along with an essential oil blend of juniper, chamomile, lavender and jojoba to reduce stress while promoting positivity and wellbeing — a deep sea anti-aging facial, manicure, pedicure, and poolside lunch credit.


Spending Mother’s Day on a babymoon? The Family to Be experience allows space for you and your partner to nurture yourselves and your soon-to-be addition with a custom or prenatal massage, express or baby bump facial, and an intimate oceanfront photo session for two.



Make memories at the beach



Of course, an Oceanside stay wouldn’t be complete without spending time on the iconic stretch of beach. Snag beach towels and loungers from The Beach Rambler, conveniently located on The Strand, for the whole family, then find the perfect spot of sand to stay awhile. Prefer to stay more active? Rent Pedego electric bikes from nearby Mission Pacific and pedal down the Strand. The two-mile-long oceanfront road is popular for cycling with the kids, taking the dog for a walk, or simply strolling to soak up the ocean views.



Sneak in Some Retail Therapy (and Shop for a Cause)



In recent years, Oceanside’s shopping scene has leveled up, drawing in a wide selection of independent boutiques and artisans. For surf-inspired goods, vintage collectibles, cool apparel, and eclectic home decor, The Ozone offers a one-stop shop for O’side finds. 


In Oceanside April 30 or May 1? Stop by The Ozone between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. to meet local makers (Ron Robinson of Apothia LA, Paula Rosen of Paula Rosen Jewelry, and Ali Heitz with Kerri Rosenthal) and pick up some special items. A percentage of sales will be donated to TERI, Inc., an Oceanside nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting children and adults with developmental and learning disabilities. (You can also shop The Ozone online and use code “TERI” during checkout to donate.)



Spend Time Together at The Seabird



While it’s possible to just spend the day in Oceanside coming from San Diego or L.A., the laidback town deserves more time to discover — and to let yourself fully unwind. Staying overnight at The Seabird provides the perfect base for you and your family to spread out, relax, and spend time together for Mother’s Day (who can say no to playing in or lounging by the pool with Pacific Ocean views?) You can bring your furry family members too!


Book a room for two nights to take advantage of even more perks.






Hi Friends, Please join me in my garden to savor the best of fresh California cuisine. Enjoy hand-crafted pastas, garden-to-table dishes and a selection of wines from around the world, all while dining steps away from the beach! Gather your friends and family to enjoy $100 credit to dine with my “Garden to Glass” package! With Love & Care, Piper

Must-Try Breweries in Oceanside and Beyond

By Suzanne Davis

San Diego is becoming as well known for its craft breweries as it is for its fish tacos. But San Diego breweries are just the start — there are plenty more just up the frothy coastline towards Oceanside, where the craft beer scene is booming, all just steps from the beach and the beachfront The Seabird Resort.

Read on for our favorite breweries in Oceanside, along with a couple honorable mentions just beyond our borders. 

Bagby Beer Co.

When world-famous professional brewer Jeff Bagby went out on his own, heads (and pint glasses) turned. What he and his wife and co-owner Dande built, less than a mile away from The Seabird, is far from beer-business-as-usual. Among their award-winning offerings? Gotta Pay the Pils, a German-style pilsner, and Untarted Cherritory, a tart Belgian-style mini blonde. Don’t miss the fried chicken and cheddar biscuits and fried cheese curd topped Belgian-style frites. If you don’t make it to the pub, you can still sample Bagby’s brews right here at The Seabird with rotating beers on tap at The Shore Room, Piper, and The Shelter Club. Bagby Beer Co., 601 S Coast Highway, Oceanside

Booze Brothers Brewing Co.

When brothers David and Donny Firth started tinkering with brewing their own beers in their garage, they never thought it would lead to this: a beloved veritable beer empire with taproom locations in Vista, Fallbrook, and, yep, Oceanside. Among their most beloved brewskies? Ramble On, an IPA with notes of fresh pine and grapefruit, and Courage Lager, which is brewed with German Pilsner malt. Booze Brothers Brewing Co., 606 Mission Ave., Oceanside

Burgeon Beer Company

Just down the road in Carlsbad, this craft brewery and taproom is well worth the short trek. Sure, we love the eye-popping lineup of brews — which range from Nitro Coffee Burl ale to the passionfruit and citrus-noted Hand Selected — but what keeps us coming back weekend after weekend are the food trucks popping up in the beer garden, including Thumbs Up BBQ and El Shrimp Bucket Mexican Food. Burgeon Beer Company, 6350 Yarrow Dr., Carlsbad

Craft Coast Beer and Tacos

The name says it all – this local joint brings two of the world’s best culinary delights together: craft beer and Baja-style street tacos. Who can say no to that? Even better, Craft Coast Beer and Tacos is just a 2-minute walk from The Seabird. With a rotating selection of beers available, enjoy a new brew on tap every time you visit. Get your fill of tacos, nachos, multias (a type of taco that uses one tortilla on top and one on the bottom with fillings in the middle), and taco bowls with your choice of perfectly prepared meats (the birria is a favorite) and satisfying veggies. Craft Coast Beer and Tacos, 275 Mission Ave, Oceanside

Northern Pine Brewing

The piney woods of the Pacific Northwest-inspired this beloved brewery, which Oceanside locals love for its knowledgeable staffers and on-point barbecue. Founded in 2018 by a trio of craft beer obsessives, Northern Pine’s offerings include slightly sweet Turning Point Cream Ale and Saized & Confused, a Belgian ale that won a gold medal at the San Diego International Beer Festival. Northern Pine Brewing, 326 N. Horne St., Oceanside

Societe Brewing Company

This indie brewery in San Diego is devoted to uniting “beer folk” of every stripe. And thanks to flavors for every palate — including a hoppy The Coachman and floral The Harlot — they do. The only thing better than nabbing a picnic table in their alfresco beer garden? Getting a few street tacos or carne asada fries from Chachos Tacos, tucked within the brewery. Societe Brewing Company, 8262 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., San Diego

South O Brewing Company

Founded by local Oceanside neighbors in 2020, South O Brewing Company is a relatively new addition to the region’s craft beer scene, situated along the famous California Pacific Coast Highway. South O brews a little of everything, offering a tap list that features a solid mix of IPAs, pilsners, amber ales, porters, and more. Food trucks pull up to dish out meals on the weekends and some weekdays — check the brewery’s social media to see what’s available. South O Brewing Company, 1575 South Coast Highway, Oceanside


The best part about checking out these craft breweries in Oceanside? Knowing you’ll return home to The Seabird Resort for a much-deserved break (and okay, maybe another pint) by the pool.

What to Do for a Family-Friendly Spring Break in Oceanside

By Jenny Adams

Spring is just around the corner and with it comes the promise of longer days, warmer temperatures, a desire to get outside, and, of course, the allure of spring break. We’ve made it through the winter and, while winter around Oceanside is one of our favorite times of year, we’re looking ahead to longer family getaways spent outside and in the water.    


Only a 90-minute drive (or two-hour train ride) from Los Angeles and just a 45-minute drive north from Downtown San Diego, easily accessible Oceanside offers a little something for everyone — whether you want to lounge on the beach, learn how to surf, splash in the pool, bike along sandy paths, or take a break with some spa-inspired R&R. 


Private balconies, beach valets, and fresh California cuisine make The Seabird Resort a welcome escape for adults. But the resort also has a world of fun waiting for the youngest family members, making it an obvious place to spend spring break.


Along with amenities tailored to every age group, curated adventures — both on land and by sea — are available with education and entertainment going hand-in-hand.


Simply put, Oceanside is fun for the whole family (pets too!). 


What to Do With Young Kids in Oceanside


These are the years when kids first meet the water. And, whether it’s splashing in the shallows of our expansive, cabana-lined pool or toddling towards the Pacific Ocean’s edge to meet the salty spray, there are endless memories to be made in Oceanside.


Celebrate these unforgettable ages with convenient programming far beyond the expected. Start your day with fishing off the Ocean Pier, and make sure to bring your camera along, as photo opportunities are plentiful. No fishing license is required. This is a fun learning opportunity for little ones, from walking the longest pier in San Diego (1,972 feet!) to stopping at the Pier Bait Shop to gear up. Even if you don’t catch anything the first time, it’s guaranteed one of the older, more experienced anglers will pull in a perch or bass (or even a spiny lobster), putting on a good show for the whole family.


Back at the resort, our team is ready to provide plenty of fun in the sun…or shade…for young children and tweens with Little Seabirds kid-friendly art and adventure activities, like a beach-inspired Craft Hour and an Art Scavenger hunt.


Afternoons can include playing in the pool, hunting for crabs in the powdery sand or even kite flying. The latter is fantastic just before sunset, when the winds pick up and the skies tinge pink. Our trained pros keep this event fun for all ages, with kites in various sizes, built for even the littlest muscles.


Of course, cuisine plays an important role in any vacation, whether you’re six or 60. Kiddos up to age 12 can enjoy extra special meals when booking the Little Seabirds Eat Free package, including two complimentary meals at Piper, where the organic ingredients and handmade pasta extend to the kid’s menu, plus receive a Seabird stuffed animal as a memento of their stay. 


What to Do With Tweens in Oceanside


Tweens won’t even remember video games or their iPhones with all the outdoor action available in Oceanside. Begin your first full day with breakfast at Piper (remember, kids up to age 12 can eat for free) and a walk around Harbor Village. This picturesque cove has loads of charm, from the red-and-white striped lighthouse to the colorful boats docked at the marina. That lighthouse is also your jumping-off point for two of Oceanside’s most adrenaline-packed activities — whale watching and dolphin tours. Oceanside Adventures offers cruises on a 50-foot, 49-passenger catamaran. It definitely takes your breath away watching a massive humpback whale break the surface and pods of dolphins commonly swim right alongside the vessel. From gray whales to blue whales, from all four species of dolphins to sea lions, sharks, and sunfish, you are only a few yards from the ocean’s most impressive wildlife.


As impressive as the Pacific Ocean’s wild creatures are, there’s even more to explore on solid ground. The waterfront town actually became famous decades ago…for its concrete. Concrete half pipes that is.


This is the birthplace of the famous Transworld SKATEboarding magazine, and the town’s five skate parks include Prince Memorial Skate Park, John Landes Park, Libby Lake Park, Martin Luther King Park, and Melba Bishop Park. If your kids are eager to learn, there are plenty of outfitters ready with pads, boards, and expert know-how. It’s also a cool afternoon activity to grab an ice cream and cruise down to one of the more advanced parks to watch the pros shred.


Make this spring break one for the books by learning out to catch a wave.


What to Do With Teens in Oceanside


California surf culture is known all over the world, and spring break is a great time to introduce your teens to the sport, whether it’s a low-key morning lesson or a full week of surf camp. The break at the Oceanside Pier is one of the best places in the nation to learn. How good? It’s actually listed in the Encyclopedia of Surfing as one of the world’s most consistent breaks.


Help selecting a board, picking up the lingo, and understanding the leash begins at Shaper’s Alley — a string of more than a dozen surf shops. Then, it’s down to the water for the first rides. Teens and parents will quickly find that the surf instructors in Oceanside are as consistently awesome as the waves. Set up a family-friendly surf lesson with North County Surf Academy Surf founder (and second-generation pro surfer) Duran Barr. You’ll learn how to read the surf and ride the waves while on the beach before heading out to test your skills in the waters of the North Shore. 


Downtown Oceanside is a great place for teenagers to gather, whether it’s shooting Instagram posts in front of the multiple, huge, colorful murals by California’s street artists, shopping along Main Street, or breezing around on cruiser-style bikes (rent a Pedego electric or pedal bicycle right at Mission Pacific, available every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.).


As the sky darkens, the streets here come alive. Every Thursday from 5-9 p.m., the Oceanside Sunset Market features regional musicians on a main stage, and hundreds of vendors, selling everything from spicy, international street foods to handmade jewelry, ceramics, and sunglasses.






Now, besides all the fun they can have with our kids programming, we also offer a special package for them. With the Little Seabirds Eat Free your kids can enjoy a meal at Piper and receive a cute Seabird stuffed animal.

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This vacation, leave your car at home and enjoy a scenic train ride to Oceanside. When you arrive, you’ll have it all just a few steps away… beach, restaurants, local shops, theater, and more!

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The Best Family-Friendly Beaches in Oceanside

By Suzanne Davis

There’s only one thing better than a day at the beach. And that’s a day at the beach in Oceanside, where three miles of soft golden sands, frothy waves, and a picturesque pier await. The Seabird Resort sits just steps away from the shore…so close that you can taste the salty sea air from your private balcony.


If you’re traveling as a family, you may be wondering: which is Oceanside’s best beach for kids? Not every stretch of sand is worth schlepping the umbrellas and castle-building gear. Below, we break down the best family beaches in Oceanside for wee ones and tweens alike. 


A quick note before heading out on a day of surf, sand, and sea: While there are plenty of family-friendly Oceanside beaches, none of the beaches are dog-friendly. (You can take your pup with you for a stroll along The Strand.) Many beach options are within walking distance from The Seabird Resort but, if you’re taking the car, public parking is available along the road following the beach with meters that accept coins and at public parking lots.

Pier View North Beach


A quick stroll from The Seabird (make sure to reserve our complimentary beach chairs and umbrellas before heading to the beach), the relaxed bend of sandy shoreline known as Pier View North Beach is tucked under the stilted legs of the Oceanside Pier — built back in 1888. Volleyball courts await for older kiddos (BYO net and ball), and two lifeguard towers help give parents peace of mind. Four blocks inland, Parlor Doughnuts is a must try, thanks to unexpected flavors like churro, lemonade, and strawberry shortcake.

Pier View South Beach


With a popular playground that sits right on the sand, Pier View South is a favorite of parents of toddlers and six-year-olds alike. Plus, the sand seems to stretch on forever — one reason why this particular beach is seemingly always bustling, yet has plenty of room at the same time. Just a few blocks inland from here: the California Surf Museum, where exhibits include antique boards and even one formerly owned by champion Kelly Slater.



Back view of fearless kid floating surfboard at ocean with waves on sunny evening
Oceanside’s family-friendly beaches offer plenty of spots for surfers of all ages.


Harbor Beach


Feel like a bonfire on the sand with your teens? Just 1.5 miles from the hotel, this sprawling beach (which, yes, sits on the harbor — fun if you love watching yachts bob on the water) has Oceanside-maintained fire rings ready for your use, steps away from the lapping waves. Need more? As Oceanside’s widest sandy beach, there are also designated swimming areas, picnic tables, and solid surfing. Breakwater Bay got its name because it straddles where the San Luis Rey River hits the ocean, and it’s just as sweet as it sounds. Just a few blocks away: Nautical Bean Coffee Company, which serves up a mean espresso macchiato that desperately-in-need-of-caffeine parents appreciate.

Buccaneer Beach


Your little buccaneers will surely proclaim this beach as arrr-some. Why? Buccaneer Park, right there across from the water and straddling a marsh, is tricked out with basketball courts and an expansive playground — complete with a slide; swings for infants, toddlers and older kids alike; and a mini rock-climbing wall. The beach itself is a bit rocky…all the better for a morning of beachcombing before heading back to The Seabird for a cappuccino for you — and a nap for the kids.

Breakwater Bay Beach


When you’re done exploring, head back to The Seabird Resort for poolside snacks at The Shelter Club. Get too much sun? Indulge in our cooling Sun Salutation treatment at Sunny’s Spa, with its mask of sea algae, aloe vera, and green tea extracts. Say it with us: “Aaaaah.”


7 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive in Oceanside

By Alana Morgan

Long stretches of sand, a laid-back vibe, and swoon-worthy sunsets make it easy to relax—and rekindle a spark — in Oceanside. An easy romantic getaway from Los Angeles, Oceanside is two hours from the City of Angels, just 45 minutes from the center of San Diego, and filled with romantic things to do for couples.

1. Book a Romantic Hotel

Of course, we’re partial to thinking that The Seabird Resort is one of the leading romantic hotels in the San Diego area. But can you blame us? With rooms and suites offering panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean from floor-to-ceiling windows and spa-inspired bathrooms with rain showers and free-standing tubs, one step into your private abode will spark that lovin’ feeling.

2. Walk Along the Beach

If you’ve ever used the “I like long walks on the beach” line, even as a joke, Oceanside delivers. Just steps from The Seabird, three miles of sandy shoreline offers plenty of beach to take an intimate stroll. Hold hands, listen to the waves lapping the shore, look out to the horizon, and feel the day-to-day stress melt away.

3. Try Something New Together

Trying a new activity or having a new experience causes our bodies to release dopamine, the neurotransmitter that makes us feel good — and it can reignite that sense of novelty and excitement from when you first fell in love. Research has shown that married couples who regularly shared new experiences reported higher relationship satisfaction. With that in mind, there’s plenty of things to do in Oceanside! Try surfing for the first time with a personalized lesson, explore the town on an electric scooter, or test your balance by paddleboarding in the Pacific.

4. Sneak in Some Spa Time

Whether you slip off for some solo self-care or opt for an intimate couple’s experience, a restorative massage, scrub, or facial will leave you feeling more at ease and more in tune with your body — the perfect recipe for a romantic getaway. Our onsite Sunny’s Spa takes the typical spa experience a step further with a curated selection of offers designed specifically for duos in their own private spa suite.

5. Share a Memorable Adventure

Make new memories with a life-changing experience, such as going whale watching in the waters surrounding Oceanside. (Mid-December through April is the time to spot majestic grey whales as they migrate from Alaska to Baja California.) Want an even bigger adrenaline rush? Liftoff and go skydiving in Oceanside to soak up stunning coastline views of southern Los Angeles to San Diego.

6. Indulge in a Special Meal

There’s something about an incredible meal that invigorates our appreciation for pleasure. Begin an evening of indulgence with drinks at a refined coastal lounge, like The Shore Room, before heading out to a romantic dinner. Our pick: Valle right next door, where expertly prepared dishes inspired from Baja’s Guadalupe Valley excite the senses with intriguing flavours, textures, and colours.

7. Watch the Sunset

Watching the sunset with the one you love may be cliché, but it never gets old! Ending a relaxed, romantic day together — or starting a decadent evening — by watching the sun paint the sky and the water sensational colors will evoke a deep sense of appreciation and togetherness.







Stay In Love

Soak in the Southern California coastline with your significant other in a private ocean view oasis. During your stay, relish in a blissful spa day while you connect with your loved one and renew your soul with a beautiful treatment and relaxing experience at Sunny’s Spa and Beauty Lounge.

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Photo by Rebecca Webb

Art That Draws Inspiration from the Coast

How the beauty — and fragility — of Oceanside’s greatest natural resource sparks the creativity of local artists.

The Pacific has inspired many people in Oceanside — the surfers who ride its waves, the fishermen who plumb its depths, the beachgoers dazzled by its kaleidoscopic waters at every sunset. 


That same water has also inspired artists, many of whom are so drawn by the area’s beauty and uncommon light that they’ve settled here permanently, making Oceanside a burgeoning center for creativity. In 2017, the city was recognized as one of the state’s first officially designated cultural districts, thanks to its eclectic emerging cultural scene. 


It’s not just the beauty of the water that spurs creativity — many local artists are moved to communicate its vulnerability. “Art can be powerful in its ability to connect us to a place and shape our understanding of the surrounding environment,” says Courtney Mattison, a Los Angeles–based ceramic artist and sculptor whose works capture the physical beauty of the imperiled ocean. Her piece Our Changing Seas VII, which hangs above the reception desk at The Seabird Resort, is a constellation of 350 individually handcrafted ceramic pieces whose fragility evokes the brittle bodies of living coral. 


“The work celebrates the immense biodiversity of coral reefs while raising the specter of climate change,” says Mattison, who has a master’s degree in marine science. “Vibrant tones and textures of healthy reefs are juxtaposed against white glazes, emphasizing the stark contrast of coral bleaching. Viewers may feel as if they are hovering over the seafloor and discovering details from every angle.”


Mattison is among many artists whose ocean-inspired works can be viewed at The Seabird and its sister resort Mission Pacific, a rotating collection curated by the Oceanside Museum of Art. From surrealist paintings to photorealism, the art at the hotels is connected by a focus on sustainability and the local environment, particularly the ocean. “The OMA did a wonderful job selecting contemporary works from local artists with meaningful ties to local ecology and culture,” says Mattison.  


For example, San Diego–based artist Akiko Surai used rope — a material closely associated with the ocean — in her work Pacific Stratum, which hangs outside at Mission Pacific’s Rooftop Bar. The colorful, fibrous shapes evoke jellyfish or perhaps cells under a microscope, and change as the sun moves across the sky. Michelle Montjoy, who lives and works in Oceanside, transformed t-shirts she sourced in local thrift stores into Chorus, an installation of dangling sculptures that emulate swaying ocean life (spot it in the pre-function space at The Seabird). 


For Presence of Mind, an elegiac collection of 33 watercolor-painted cyanotypes — a photographic print with a distinctive blue color — in The Seabird’s lobby, San Diego artist Annalise Neil fastidiously photographed natural items both large and small along the Oceanside coastline. “This work is built entirely from the visual fabric that makes up the wild regions surrounding Oceanside, from the creatures of the sea to the rippling lagoons,” she explains. “I’m passionate about the wilderness of this ecosystem, and believe it must be noticed and loved in order to be protected and kept healthy.”






Chorus by Michelle Montjoy

Winter Fun in the Sun: Family Vacations in Oceanside 

Like it or not, winter is upon us. Have you made plans for keeping the winter blues at bay? We’ll let you in on a little secret: Oceanside California. With mild weather throughout the season (think sunny days in the mid-60s), activities to please all ages, and an easygoing, small-town vibe, Oceanside is the perfect spot for a family beach vacation. 


The best part: Oceanside is easy to access: it’s about a 90-minute drive or two-hour train ride from Los Angeles, and the San Diego airport is just 40 miles away.  


Your home base? The Seabird Resort. Our oceanfront hotel has stunning Pacific views, sophisticated dining options, and a full roster of activities from surf lessons to our fun and educational program for kids, Little Seabirds.


Here are seven ways to make the most of a winter stay in Oceanside. 


1. Go On a Whale Watching Adventure

Mid-December through April is one of the best times of the year to see whales in the wild, as more than 20,000 gray whales swim right past Oceanside as they migrate from Alaska to Baja California, Mexico. Head out on a whale watching tour with Oceanside Adventures to spot grays as well as minke and humpback whales, dolphins, and sea lions.


2. Spin Around the Rink

It may be too warm for snow, but you can still take part in a frosty winter tradition. Lace up your skates and glide around the ice rink during the daily open skate sessions at Icetown Carlsbad, less than 20 minutes away from the Seabird Resort.


3. Visit the San Diego Zoo

A must for animal lovers — and sure to convert anyone who isn’t — the 100-acre wildlife park an hour south of O’side is home to more than 12,000 rare and endangered animals. Beyond the cheetahs, chimps, and Chinese alligators, there’s always something new happening at the zoo, like the Jungle Bells series of holiday events (through early Jan.), or other special experiences and tours available year-round. 


4. Build Sand Castles

The only things interrupting the Pacific Ocean views from the Seabird Resort is a long stretch of sand and Oceanside’s iconic, picturesque pier. With the beach right out front, it’s easy to get your sun & sand fix without having to pack a day’s worth of beach gear. Make sure to stop by the Beach Rambler to grab complimentary beach chairs and umbrellas.


5. Stroll Through the Sunset Market

The outdoor Oceanside Sunset Market takes over the streets near the pier every Thursday from 5 to 9 p.m. With a dizzying variety of food vendors serving everything from lobster rolls to empanadas to Thai street food — plus local crafts and artists, live music, and a game-filled kids zone, you can easily spend an evening exploring all the market has to offer.


6. Go Fishing Off the Pier

With no fishing license required, the pier is not only the perfect backdrop for your family sunset selfie, it’s also a convenient spot to try fishing with your family. There’s even a bait shop located right in the middle of the pier to rent rods and all the gear you need to drop a line. 


7. Keep the Little Ones Busy

To ensure even the youngest members of the family stay engaged, the Seabird team hosts daily interactive activities through the Little Seabirds program. From clever arts and crafts (like building your own stuffed bear) to stimulating art scavenger hunts, the kids can discover a different side of Oceanside while you take some time for yourself. Little Seabirds participants can also eat free when booking our special package in advance.


Photo by Patrizia Montanari

Holiday Shopping Guide: How to Give the Gift of Oceanside

Want to put an authentic Oceanside twist on your holiday shopping? The Ozone, the lifestyle store located at our sister hotel, Mission Pacific, is your place. The artful mash-up of a slick art gallery and cool surf shop has become an essential shopping destination in Oceanside for its highly curated offerings and singular ambience — and the holiday season is no exception. 


“We definitely wanted to go all out for our first holiday season,” says Karen Meena, the store’s chief buyer. That meant putting up a rock-n-roll-inspired Christmas tree whose red branches are hung with ornaments depicting icons like David Bowie, Stevie Nicks, Johnny Cash, and Freddie Mercury (the work of artist Cody Foster). And stocking the shop with an inspired mix of “special things you cannot find elsewhere” and merch to inspire spontaneous discovery.


That includes limited-edition gnome sculptures by German conceptual artist Ottmar Hörl; Smith and Sinclair holiday gummies (chewable no-fuss instant cocktails); crystal glassware; custom tie-dye T-shirts; and exuberant red and pink neon lips encased in an acrylic box. 


Books are always popular gifts, and the selection Meena has curated includes interiors, pop culture, and art volumes sure to please even the fussiest readers. “Maybe it’s because they’re so beautiful to hold, but guests are loving the book selection — and the rarer the better,” says Meena, who adds that tomes covering the local surf and skate culture, such as the one produced by the Oceanside Historical Society, make for great presents. 


Oceanside culture is also reflected in the excellent collection of vintage shirts, as well as surfboards that, according to Meena, “were shaped by local guys in Oceanside in the 60s and 70s and chosen by curators from the California Surfing Museum.”


Ozone’s clothing selection focuses on Southern California designers and brands, the closer the better. “Oceanside has an impressive reputation as a place where people start fashion or streetwear brands or become designers,” says Meena, mentioning local eyewear company RAEN as well as Nixon watches and Vuori activewear — all hometown brands who made it huge. Other local merch in stock: leather bags by Rais Case, travel bags from Aloha Collection, Feather4 Arrow’s beachy kidswear, hoodies from Aviator Nation, and hats made by Zito Hat Co. In other words, a one-stop shop for anyone interested in emerging California designers and the SoCal style scene.


From a bit further afield, you’ll find beach-inspired sportswear from Santa Monica’s John Eshaya and binoculars from San Francisco–based Nocs Provisions.


Products from Apothia, the LA brand responsible for the aromas at the Seabird and Mission Pacific, are also in high demand. “Guests are constantly asking us what makes the hotels smell so good,” Meena says. Scents used throughout the hotels, including Bronzed and the holiday scent Chrismukkah, have been “runaway bestsellers.”