It’s so nice to meet other bloggers from other places and do some awesome collaborations. I may only have met them virtually but I feel like I know them because we share a common passion for blogging and in many cases I’m in groups with them online. When I decided to start my Eat, Shop, Do series I thought what better way than to collaborate with some of my blogger friends and in the process learn more about them, where they live, and share with all of you their go-to’s in their city.
Everyone meet Jessica! Jessica Kay is a San Diego (North County!) based lifestyle and career blogger. She writes for the 9-5 corporate professionals at her blog Cubicle Chic and strives to inspire, uplift, and motivate her fellow ambitious and career driven women. Her professional background is marketing in the life science and healthcare industry. She lives with her husband and 2 cats in the hidden gem of San Diego – North County!
Allow me to humble-brag with a simple statement here: San Diego is the best place to live in the US. It’s probably one of the top 5 cities to live in the world, and it’s easy to tell why. The sunny beaches, the food scene, the easy-going culture and people, and relatively affordable standards of living. Yes, real estate price has hiked up sky-high, but we also have a thriving biotech/tech industry and a super-low unemployment rate. Any way you slice it, San Diego is an amazing place to live in. If these things don’t make you want to pack up your bags and visit, I don’t know what would!
If you are looking to visit San Diego soon, I’d highly recommend checking out San Diego’s hidden gem – North County. It’s not an area that gets a ton of publicity and visibility, probably because it’s a little farther from the airport (about an hour). But if you’re driving down from LA or anywhere north of LA, you pass by North County first! With that said, here are the things to check out in each of the Eat, Shop, Do categories!
San Diego is nationally known for its microbreweries so this is definitely a must-do! Many breweries also happen to serve excellent food, so make sure you do your research if you are wanting to sample the beer and also have some delicious food. Here are three in North County that I highly recommend.
1. Stone Brewery (Escondido)
2. Mother Earth Brew Co. (Vista)
3. Belching Beaver (Vista, Carlsbad, Oceanside)
There are many places to shop in North County, like the Carlsbad Outlet, but a few places stand out from the average malls/shopping places. The Forum in Carlsbad is a small outdoors mall but it has shops like Madewell, Anthropologie, H&M, and Urban Outfitters amongst its retail shops. It’s BEAUTIFULLY designed outdoors space. In fact, I’ve done photo shoots here multiple times and I’m always happy with the results.
The Design Districts on Cedros Avenue is another unique place that is only found in North County. It’s a street full of interior design & décor boutiques, firms, and just various shops. My favorite shop to visit on the street is called Leaping Lotus.
1. The Forum Carlsbad Mall (Carlsbad)
2. Cedros Avenue Design District (Solana Beach)
There are SO many outdoors activities to do in San Diego. I will pick one from each of these categories – beaches, hiking, and stand up paddle boarding.
Torrey Pines State Beach is probably the most quintessential and iconic beach in San Diego. It’s the picture you see in many promotional posters about San Diego. It also happens to be a beautiful and super accessible beach.
Annie’s Canyon is probably the most unique hiking places I’ve ever gone to in my life. It’s very short (about 45 minutes back and forth at average speed) and has gorgeous sceneries. It’s also very kids friendly (I see people bringing their toddlers all the time) and it’s a perfect place to visit for about 1.5 hours if you are around Encinitas/Solana Beach for other things.
Last but not the least, if you’re interested in standup paddle boarding and perhaps it’s your first time, don’t forget to try it at Carlsbad Lagoon. The thing about learning to standup paddleboard is that you want to start your learning experience at a place with calm and smooth water. Once you learn the technique and have the muscle memory, then you can conquer the choppier ocean. Carlsbad Lagoon offers the perfectly calm and smooth bay water, and is a must visit for beginner SUPers!
1. Torey Pines State Beach (San Diego)
2. Annie’s Canyon (Solana Beach)
3. Carlsbad Lagoon for SUP (Carlsbad)
I hope you enjoyed this latest installment of my Eat, Shop, Do series post and as always thank you so much for stopping by the blog today!