Between the beach and the brew scene, some epic golf venues, and adrenaline-soaked adventures, O’side just might be the perfect locale for a trip with the boys. Here’s a roundup of some of our favorite things to do the next time you’re in town hangin’ with the dudes.
O’side is famed for its consistent swells. Depending on the style you surf, there are different breaks you’ll want to check out, from the north and south sides of the pier to Harbor Beach to Buccaneer’s.
Newbs should check out the O’side surf schools and arrange for a group or private lesson tailored to your experience and ability. Or, for vicarious thrills, head to the California Surf Museum and check out the impressive collection of vintage surfboards that chronicles the history of wave riding and the influence of surf culture on SoCal and beach towns like O’side.
We’re super bike friendly, and rental shops around town have a variety of cruisers and city bikes so you can get around like a local, including a selection of e-bikes and electric scooters from Ride O’side or Wheel Fun Rentals.
You can bike, drive, or walk to take a self-guided tour of the O’side art murals, an amazing example of public art and a big part of our eclectic O’side identity.
The brew scene in O’side has earned a national reputation and a passionate local following. Kilowatt Brewing produces handcrafted beer with unique ingredients located right in downtown Oceanside. Taps include multiple IPAs and traditional styles to barrel aged, fruit and sour beers all small batch brewed by hand. And with a name like Kilowatt, you can expect lighting & decor that’s “electric”!
A few more blocks south on Coast Highway, Bagby Beer has earned accolades for its “Three Beagles” English-style brown ale (among others!), proving that styles beyond hoppy IPAs have a home in O’side (there’s a full food menu, too).
South ‘O Pour House has a range of draughts, local and otherwise, plus cocktails, wine by the glass, burgers, entrees, and shared plates.
For something different, head to the Pac Coast Spirits, an award-winning distillery specializing in hand-crafted small batch spirits. And they’re serving up a great food menu to boot.
Oceanside’s golf scene is vibrant and diverse and totally o’riginal—you’re as likely to see a local teen golfing in flip flops as a pro wielding a custom club. Bill Murray and Kelly Slater are known fans of Goat Hill Park and its challenging short-course layout (the name should give you a clue, it’s a steep track).
The final four holes at the hilltop Arrowwood Golf Course are known as The Quandary, thanks to the terrain and the ocean breezes that kick up in the afternoon. Emerald Isle Golf Course hosts an all-day Friday Skins tournament, designed to include golfers at all skills levels on any schedule.
And Oceanside Muni is a public course open to all that rents gear, teaches lessons, and has a practice facility with a full grass driving range, a chipping area, and two groomed putting greens.
Oceanside is home to the only coastal skydiving experience in SoCal, available through GoJump Oceanside located at the Bob Maxwell Field at the Oceanside Municipal Airport. Get a spectacular birds-eye view of the Southern California coastline from San Diego to Catalina Island and Dana Point, whizzing through the air before you deploy your parachute and float slowly back to Earth.
If skydiving is on your bucket list, but that “jumping from a plane at 12,000 feet up” isn’t, check out iFly. Oceanside’s indoor skydiving experience taught by world-class instructors within state-of-the-art wind tunnels that let you take flight just like the real thing.
If your crew is looking for some excitement floating on the Pacific Ocean, then sportfishing charters right out of Oceanside Harbor is your ticket. Check out Oceanside Sea Center for all your open-water fishing needs.
Sun’s up and you need grub. In the heart of downtown, The Beach Break Café on South Coast Highway is a hometown fave, serving up omelets, scrambles, and fluffy buttermilk pancakes with a heaping side of O’side vibes.
Barely a stone’s throw from the pier, Señor Grubby’s is where locals get their breakfast burrito fix (we like A.B.C. – eggs with avo, bacon and cheese) before heading to the beach.
The Pier View Coffee Co. is practically next door, serving breakfast sandwiches, an acai bowl, fruit smoothies, and—very important—all the caffeinated beverages.
And LTH (it stands for “Local Tap House”) is a local institution on South Coast Highway, beloved for its brunch (try the huevos rancheros with your choice of local beers on tap).
Midday, we like to hang at PCH Sports Bar & Grill (“PCH” literally stands for “Pretty Cool Hangout”). It’s a South O institution for wraps, fish tacos, and the self-proclaimed best burgers on Earth (we dig the Barnyard Burger with a fried egg on top).
We’re also keen on the Mission Avenue Bar & Grill—it’s a little more gastropub, with a cocktail menu and dishes like crawfish mac-and-cheese and fish & chips rounding out its burger offerings.
For fast-casual, we’ll grab the karaage chicken sando at Naegi, serving artful Japanese sandwiches on soft Hokkaido milk bread. Or at the Harbor, we’ll keep it old school with a fish & chips basket or the fried shrimp and clam strips at Harbor Fish & Chips.
O’side has one of the hottest food scenes in SoCal, but no matter how elevated the cuisine, the vibe is always down to earth (yes, you can wear your flip flops).
When you need a pizza fix, it’s The Privateer Coal Fire Pizza, where your pie comes with toppers like garlic confit, Spanish chorizo, or vegan Brazil nut parmesan—plus a world-class wine list from its own bottle shop.
For some down-home southern BBQ, Miss Kim’s by Dat Boy Good is where you’ll want to satisfy your gumbo fix, along with a heapin’ helpin’ of pulled pork, brisket, and ribs, you and the boys won’t leave hungry. And they’re pouring all the cocktails specialties; can we say you haven’t really experienced a flavor of the south until you’ve had a Spiked Sweet Tea.
At Harney Sushi Oceanside near the pier, dig into fresh sashimi, nigiri, and specialty rolls, plus cocktails.
And these days, O’side restos are redefining boutique hotel dining. One of the hottest reservations is Valle at the Mission Pacific Hotel, where Chef Roberto Alcocer is gunning for Michelin glory, celebrating the food and wine of Baja’s Valle de Guadalupe region.
When you’re craving a truly memorable dining experience, there’s Matsu, which San Diego Magazine called the Best New Restaurant of 2022—a 48-seat fine-dining restaurant serving a 10-course tasting menu focusing on the traditions and techniques of Japanese food married with Southern California terroir.
On a guys’ trip, you want two things out of your hotel: location and amenities. On the waterfront, The Seabird Resort has four private cabanas, a hot tub, and ample lounge seating around the third-floor pool that overlooks the pier.
Its sister property, the Mission Pacific Hotel, has a live DJ at the rooftop bar where you can get bottle service, craft cocktails, and small bites.
The Green Room Hotel is a mid-century urban oasis, where, thanks to its location, you can walk next door to Heritage BBQ and munch on world class brisket and brew.
And if you’re looking for something of a smart value choice on your man-venture, there’s always the Holiday Inn Oceanside, Days Inn by Wyndham Oceanside, SpringHill Suites by Marriott Oceanside, and The Fin Hotel, by Hilton.
Or check out the numerous O’side property rentals available through sites like Airbnb. You’ll find everything from inland estates to beachfront condos.
For more lodging options, click on the Stay page of the website and find the place to suit your needs.