Sports & Recreation
While the beautiful beaches and golf courses spring to mind when you think of activities in Del Mar, there is so much more! From swimming, surfing, biking and golf, to more unique recreational activities like hot air balloon rides, free-flying at the Torrey Pines Gliderport, and seasonal whale watching. And don’t forget the famous Del Mar Racetrack and San Diego County Fair! With so many things to do in Del Mar, this little seaside retreat is a surprising coastal gem for families, couples and business travelers alike.
Del Mar is known for not only it’s great beach breaks, but for it’s excellent reef breaks as well. From the north end of Del Mar, heading south, there are beach breaks on all the numbered streets, from 29th to 15th Streets, with 25th, 23rd & 19th seeming to break a bit better than the others most of the time. From 15th Street, there are very good reef breaks at the ends of many of the streets, with a short climb down the sandstone bluffs to get to the water. Due to limited parking in the city, the breaks rarely get too crowded. Also, within 20 minutes north or south, you’ll find some of the best surfing in California.
There are many beachbreaks in Del Mar, perfect for fishing in the surf. San Diego is also home to a fleet of boats that travel to Mexican waters to fish for yellowtail, dorado (mahi mahi), wahoo, marlin and tuna: big eye, yellowfin, bluefin and my favorite, albacore. These boats go from 1 1/2 days to a few weeks (down to Cocos Island off the coast of Costa Rica) and everything in between.
Two public tennis courts are located near the intersection of 21st Street and Court Street in Del Mar. Municipal tennis court facilities are open to all members of the general public at no charge. All tennis tournaments conducted on municipal tennis facilities must have prior approval from the Del Mar City Manager. Additionally, L’Auberge Del Mar offers tennis instruction for resort guests. Their tennis professional, Jason Miller, is available daily for group, individual, private and semi-private tennis lessons. 30-minute and 1-hour sessions are available by appointment. Guests of the hotel will receive world-class instruction on championship courts – just two blocks from the beach – while enjoying breathtaking Southern California coastal views. Call the hotel concierge for rates and to set up your lesson: (858) 793-6455.
Around Del Mar, you’ll discover sprawling lagoons and wetlands teaming with wildlife. All this natural beauty makes for some of the San Diego’s best hiking, which includes Torrey Pines State Nature Reserve, San Dieguito Lagoon and Riverpath Del Mar. South of 15th Street, bluffs line Del Mar City Beach. At all but the highest tides, the beach is totally passable all the way to Torrey Pines, and there are a number of rugged trails down from the cliffs. A dirt path paralleling the train track on the bluff is a favorite of walkers and joggers, who can go for miles without encountering a car or crossing a road. Click here for the best Del Mar day hikes!
Whether you’re taking to the road on a road bike or a beach cruiser, Del Mar offers cyclists picturesque views of the coastline. Starting on the 101, cyclists can travel as far north as Oceanside on the Pacific Coast Highway before turning around. Or, cyclists can head south towards La Jolla and travel along the challenging hills of the Torrey Pines State Reserve.
The equestrian scene is flourishing in Del Mar with many nature spots perfectly viewed from horseback. Check out Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve and Del Mar Mesa Ranch located at 6150 Del Mar Mesa Rd, San Diego, CA 92130 / Phone: (858) 792-2508
One of the best ways to explore San Diego’s beaches and bays is to get out on the water. Anyone can enjoy kayaking from their very first outing, and the sport offers a lifetime of opportunities and challenges ranging from two-hour coastal tours to epic multi-day expeditions.
Guided tours are widely available here in San Diego’s temperate waters, and don’t require any formal training or experience.
Couples and families with small children will particularly like the tandem models that can accommodate two or more paddlers. On any given day, hundreds of visitors and locals can be seen paddling these brightly-colored craft all around San Diego’s coves and coastlines.
San Diego Beach Volleyball Club is located in Del Mar and Oceanside, CA. They offer elite classes and camps year-round from beginning to intermediate to advanced. Playing volleyball is best at River Mouth (aka Dog Beach.)