Just A Weekend: San Diego + Encinitas

Just Hit Send is here to make your life easy; our city guides are a curated experience for the perfect weekend in a new city. With up-to-date recommendations for 2021


San Diego is often touted for it’s pristine climate & access to nature, while being in the heart of a bustling city.

But like all cities this year, things have changed & shifted - so we set out to this sunny city see for ourselves which attractions are still San Diego go-to’s, and what’s new; in short - it did not disappoint!

If you can swing it, we recommend spending two nights of your long weekend in San Diego proper and one night down the road in the small, picturesque surf town of Encinitas, to get a well-rounded California experience!


Below we’ve outlined our top tips for an idyllic three-night adventure in SoCo:

  • Stay:

San Diego

The Pendry Hotel

With proximity to downtown, Little Italy, and a short drive from several hot spots – the Pendry combines traditional elegance with modern trends, making for a relaxing & fun getaway experience. Stop by their bustling pool deck on weekends for cocktails & people-watching, or enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the high-end Provisional Kitchen attached to the hotel.



Photo credit: DiscoTech

  • Eat + Drink


Born & Raised

Google any top restaurant list for San Diego in 2021 and Born & Raised is likely to be near the top – and for good reason! This two-story, high-energy steakhouse was as glamorous & impressive as it was memorable.



Photo credit: San Diego Magazine

Nolita Hall

Only open Weds-Sun, make sure to reserve at Nolita Hall in advance & be prepared for a treat! With an insta-worthy indoor-outdoor garden & lively scene (even late-night) it’s a dining experience unique to San Diego.



Photo Credit: We Traveled Where

Breakfast / Brunch: Morning Glory, Frost Me, Herb & Eatery

Late Night Drinks:

False Idol

If you’re sticking around Little Italy like we did (there's so much to explore it would take more than a weekend!) pop over to this tiki-themed speak easy for imaginative & conversation-worthy cocktails!



  • Things to do:

Take in Views from the Water

Venture over to the Seaforth Marina and jump on a powerboat for $150/hour; a shaded, 6-seater boat that lets you cruise around the bay and comfortably take in views of the San Diego skyline & USS Midway right from the water!



Day 3 - drive to Encinitas:

  • Stay

Alila Resort

If you can squeeze in a 1-day venture over to Encinitas, the brand-new Alila Marea Beach Resort is a must-stay! With breathtaking views of the coast, suite-like rooms, & a nod to the Carlsbad caves built right into the architecture, this sleek & stylish resort is somewhat magical.


Photo credit: Markzeff


  • Eat + Drink


Jeune & Jolie

A trip to Jeune & Jolie is worth the entire trip to Encinitas/Carlsbad area. This recent Michelin-star award-winner is a cheerful play on classic French & Californian cuisines with interior design details to write home about.



Breakfast & Lunch:


Newly-opened MRKT SPACE is a fresh, modern café with a selection of healthy breakfast & lunch options (think salmon nicoise, baked eggs with greens, & caprese sandwiches) as well as a full coffee selection and beer & wine. Oh, and of course, a beautiful market!





Things to Do:

Rent a bike and ride through the town of Encinitas, which is dotted with quaint, old shops & eateries (MRKT will be one of your stops along the way.) Cross one street over for a picturesque stroll along Neptune street to spot surfers & charming beach homes.



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