The Guide to Del Mar

San Diego's Best Beach Town

Del Mar, California

Home of the renowned Del Mar Racetrack and one of the most prominent county fairs around, the beach town of Del Mar is a haven of fine dining, luxury hotels, and summer concerts––all of which are within a stone’s throw of the Pacific Ocean. From sunset views overlooking Torrey Pines State Beach to the seasonal horse races and the county fair, Del Mar offers a uniquely upscale yet laid back environment that’ll make everyone feel right at home.

The San Diego County Fair provides family entertainment in a variety of facets including pie eating contests, petting zoos, and a great line up of concerts, as well as some more adult-specific activities like wine and beer festivals, which can all be enjoyed before the spectacular fireworks display. Dine on special treats only available inside the grounds such as grilled corn and turkey legs saturated with butter and other delicious seasonings followed up with a variety of your other favorite treats––but deep-fried!

Del Mar also features an eclectic group of restaurants covering the culinary spectrum. Tucked away by the corner of 12th and Camino Del Mar, Café Secret provides an authentic look in the lives of Peruvian owners Bratzo and Daniella Basagoitia. As you sit down to enjoy classic Latin dishes like empanadas and ceviche, you are welcomed into the most comforting and uniquely refreshing restaurant in North County. Continuing with the Latin theme, visitors and residents alike can look forward to Taco Tuesday at En Fuego. Located a few blocks south of the Del Mar Plaza, En Fuego brings you a late night, social setting with traditional street tacos and excellent margaritas bound to get your night going.

When it comes time to settle in for the evening, L’Auberge is the premiere luxury hotel by the ocean. With five acres of land overlooking the crashing waves of the Del Mar beaches, this hotel is home to fine dining options like Coastline to get your day started and Kitchen 1540 for that romantic evening with your loved one. Don’t forget to include a trip to the hotel’s very own spa, where you can expect to receive some of the most relaxing treatments, guaranteed to leave you feeling rejuvenated and ready to ease back into the monotony of life.

Just across the street from the hotel is the Del Mar Plaza, where you’ll find more exquisite dining opportunities like Il Fornaio, a traditional Italian restaurant where you can sip bellini’s while enjoying Frittelle Allo Sciroppo d'Acero, as well as Pacifica, where you can find the best oysters and prime cuts of steak around. The Plaza also features the best boutique clothing shops in the area like Peaches En Regalia and Gary’s Studio to ensure you are dressed to perfection when you are out for that night on the town.

New this year, the Del Mar Racetrack will also host the Breeder’s Cup World Championship, a race with a large prize purse sure to draw in the masses. Take part in gambling and spectating during the November through December season while enjoying great food and family fun.

Del Mar offers a unique environment that is distinguishable from all other beach towns. The laid-back, easy-going nature combined with the posh hotel and shopping amenities create the most picturesque beach town in Southern California. From nights out on the town with you and your loved one to the days of family outings, time can be spent enjoying walks on the beach after romantic dinners or meandering around the fairgrounds with your children. 

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