Solana Beach, California

Country Club Meets Eclectic

Looklyloo Score: 86

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What's it like to live in Solana Beach?

Encinitas/Cardiff vs Solana Beach?

Encinitas has more night life than Solana, IMO. Solana has their little downtown but it’s mostly interior design related. They do have some cool bars and restaurants on PCH, I’m a fan of the Pillbox and Pizza Port personally. And Belly Up tavern has some good shows come through! Solana is smaller, maybe slightly more affluent—not that Encinitas and Cardiff aren’t, obviously. Cardiff, especially on the west side of the 5 is a little tighter.

Family life is good for all 3–schools are good, good parks and beaches, access to trails in the lagoons, etc. All 3 are well situated for getting wherever you wanna go. We have friends in downtown, Mission Valley, PQ, Clairemont, etc, and preCOVID could always get to their houses or meet up with them pretty quick.

We’ve been here in Encinitas for about 3 years and are very happy with it. We bought last year and will probably stay permanently. Started out in Del Mar (pre-kids), so spent a lot of time in Solana too. Good news is it’s all super close together, so you’ll still spend plenty of time in each of the north coast communities.

Encinitas/Cardiff vs Solana Beach?

Solana beach is a little nicer I’d say because 20 years ago Encinitas was kinda eh, but Encinitas has changed a lot. Definitely a way younger crowd in Encinitas and the 101 part of it got really nice in the last couple of years. Solana is more geriatric because older people are grandfathered into a massively growing real estate market. I grew up in Solana and it’s definitely a small family town, everyone goes to Solana Vista, then Skyline then Earl Warren for school, all great schools. Encinitas is bigger and from why I know there’s more flexibility around where kids go to school. Western part of Encinitas is pretty indistinguishable from Solana Beach just more commercial and retail stuff, Solana is almost entirely residential outside of Cedros and the one side of the 101 where there’s shops. Kinda gotta spend time in both tho to get the vibe

Solana Beach Living Recommendations, Renting/28/M

Dear God don't live in North Park or PB if you are going to work in Solana Beach. North Park is cool and really hipstery but not worth the drive. Don't think about living in PB unless you really don't care about your stuff (car) and you just want to get raging drunk every weekend with a bunch of 20yo college kids. Traffic in SD is getting worse and worse. Solana Beach, Cardiff, Encinitas are are really awesome places to live that have a good social scene, good food, and good people; especially for the young professionals. I live in Leucadia (a community in Encinitas) and I love it, you can walk to good food and fun places to go out. You will thank me later but please take north park and pb off your list. Instead of having a lovely 5 minute commute along the beautiful pch, you will be sitting in traffic wanting to kill yourself and others.

LIVING IN SOLANA BEACH | North County San Diego | Relocating to San Diego