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North America > United States of America > California > Southern California > San Diego County > North County (San Diego County) > San Marcos (California)
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San Marcos is a city in San Diego County in Southern California.

Get in

San Marcos is located on Highway 78 between Oceanside and Escondido. It is roughly 35 miles north of San Diego via I-5 or I-15 to Highway 78. The nearest major airport is San Diego. The nearest minor airport is Palomar Airport in Carlsbad.

The SPRINTER, a new light rail which runs between Oceanside and Escondido, stops in San Marcos.

Get around

Breeze is the local bus system, with the Sprinter Oceanside-Escondido light rail line stopping in San Marcos as well. You can also dial 511 in the San Diego area for regional traffic, transit, and commute info.


The gallery has steadily gained in stature locally, nationally and internationally. It has been featured in such prestigious publications as Art Forum, Artweek, Art in America & Ceramics Monthly.


  • Discovery Creek Trail. Excellent views for hikers and cyclists. Cyclists will have to put in some work, though, to reach the views, as there is an 0.8-mile paved road uphill- but most agree that it’s worth the climb. The trail totals 1.1 miles with an equestrian path running just south of it. The trail begins at La Noche Drive, runs along Discovery Creek and ends at Lakeview Park.


  • Fry's Electronics. Theme "Jules Verne" with several large fishtanks.


  • Restaurant Row offers a selection of different restaurants, including Indian, Thai, Mexican, Greek, Seafood, Brewpub, Steak, Pizza, as well as several chains.
    • Katsu Seafood & Steak House, 1020 W San Marcos Blvd # 150, +1 760-744-7156. Sushi and Benihana-style Japanese stir-fry. The sushi bar is popular; there's usually a wait.
    • King & I Thai. Try the duck pineapple curry.
    • Fish House Veracruz. Good food. Small portions.
    • Alfresco Italian Buffet. This is on Nordhal Road exit on I-78.
  • Rossi's Pizza, 156 S. Rancho Santa Fe Rd. Consistently good pizza. A San Marcos Tradition for over 30 years!
  • Sushi Huku, 727 W San Marcos Blvd. Probably the best sushi in North County. Korean-run. Great service.


  • Churchills Pub and Grille, 887 West San Marcos Blvd, +1 760-471-8773. English Pub, hosts dart leagues. Very involved in the craft beer community and boasts a selection of over 200 beers. Known for its Fish n Chips and curries. Patio with firepits. Pool table, dart boards, golf game, Big Buckhunter. Kid Friendly. Was a much warmer and more colorful venue when it used to be the expat haven called Camelot. The food was better as well.
  • Penny Lane Pub & Grill, 1001 W. San Marcos Blvd. Even if you don't love the Beatles, the pints are tasty, the staff is friendly, and the British-style dinner specials are a bargain (try the Chicken Pie!).


There is a pretty limited selection of lodging in San Marcos. More options can be found in neighboring Carlsbad.

Go next

Routes through San Marcos
OceansideVista  W California 78.svg E  EscondidoBrawley

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