I spent part of my youth growing up in California and I remember driving on the freeway and, from time to time, seeing an exit sign here or there that would say: Carlsbad. I always thought the name itself was kind of cool... but who knew the actual city was so great!
About 8 years ago my wife and I along with our four kids exchanged through RCI and stayed at a beautiful Grand Pacific Resort in Carlsbad and to this day, my kids say that was one of their favorite trips of all time (and believe me.... we've been on some awesome vacations)!
The first thing we liked was the easy accessibility. Carlsbad is built up on both sides of the I-5 Freeway and everything seems to be just minutes away. The resort we stayed at was about 5 minutes from the beach but built atop a small mountain crest with total, unobstructed views of the southern California coast - the sunsets were simply inspiring!
The next thing we liked about Carlsbad was all the fun shops and restaurants. We love to explore new shops and enjoy different restaurants when we go on vacation and Carlsbad has plenty of both. Since it's right on the coast, it's swimming with great seafood and tons of shops with a "beach boy" flare. Everything is fun and laid back at the same time and the locals all seem to have those same qualities woven into their DNA.
Another great thing about Carlsbad is its proximity to the theme parks. Seaworld is less than 30 minutes south in San Diego and Lego Land is only minutes away... and if you want to drive a little further north, you can still take in Disneyland.
Yup, my family and I LOVED Carlsbad. If Southern California is a place you've always wanted to go... or if you've been there before but haven't checked out Carlsbad, put it down as the next place for your next vacation!