The Best Beach Hotels in Carlsbad, California

Stay steps from the beach in Carlsbad, California
Stay steps from the beach in Carlsbad, California | © Ian Dagnall / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Nick Dauk
1 June 2021

Carlsbad, California, has waves of excitement and leisure, including surfing, sunbathing, rollercoasters and drives. Just north of San Diego, it offers a laid-back culture stirred with natural beauty and modern thrills. Whether your vacation plans include cruising the coast or settling down in the sand, make your trip a memorable one with a stay at one of these beach hotels – bookable with Culture Trip.

Beach Terrace Inn

Hotel
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Beach Terrace Inn
Courtesy of Beach Terrace Inn / Expedia

With space and privacy to kick your feet up and say “ah,” the Beach Terrace Inn fills every moment with little luxuries. These former apartments have spacious rooms to lounge in when you’re not soaking in the rays at the pool. Should the private beachfront not be large enough for your liking, Carlsbad State Beach, including Tamarack Surf Beach, is a seashell’s toss to the south. You could also hop on a train at the Carlsbad Village station across the street to explore the surrounding area.

Ocean Palms Beach Resort

Resort
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Ocean Palms Beach Resort
Courtesy of Ocean Palms Beach Resort / Expedia

Supreme California living for the budget traveler is the name of the game at Ocean Palms Beach Resort. With its pool, hot tub and fitness center, the hotel has it all, but don’t plan on hanging out in your apartment-like suite. Carlsbad City Beach is just across the street, beckoning you to dive in. As the sun sets on this top-rated hotel, you’ll wonder why you don’t just move in and wake up to the waves every morning.

Hilton Garden Inn Carlsbad Beach

Hotel
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Hilton Garden Inn Carlsbad Beach
Courtesy of Hilton Garden Inn Carlsbad Beach / Expedia

South Carlsbad has something for the whole family, and you can access it all from the Hilton Garden Inn Carlsbad Beach. SeaWorld, the San Diego Zoo and other attractions are a half-hour away, while Carlsbad Village’s best dining and shopping are within a 10-minute drive. Not sure where to head first? Think it over under the California sun on your suite’s patio, in the outdoor pool or among the sand crabs along Carlsbad Beach.

Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach, a Hilton Resort and Spa

Resort
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Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach
Courtesy of Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach, a Hilton Resort and Spa / Expedia

Catch royal rays on the luxurious oceanfront pool deck at Cape Rey. Too much sun in your eyes? Perhaps a private cabana will do the trick. Of course, the private balcony of your ocean-facing suite provides the right amount of shade and the perfect spot for whale watching. Prefer bath salt to sea salt? The Ocean Crest Spa uses custom-blended spa products for its full-body treatments and massages for unrivaled regal pampering.

Cardiff by the Sea Lodge

Lodge
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Cardiff by the Sea Lodge
Courtesy of Cardiff by the Sea Lodge / Expedia

Follow the I-5 20 minutes south of Carlsbad to be whisked away by the effortless charm of Cardiff by the Sea Lodge. This dreamy retreat has serene views of the San Elijo State Beach from its rooftop garden. With cozy fireplaces and jet tubs in some rooms and ocean or garden views, the hotel has everything you need for a relaxing stay. Add your favorite book or bottle of wine into the mix as the crashing waves and cooing gulls help you disappear into paradise.

Tamarack Beach Resort

Business Hotel
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Tamarack Beach Resort Hotel
Courtesy of Tamarack Beach Resort / Expedia

Scheduling a business trip to SoCal? Treat your employees (and yourself) right with a stay at the oceanside Tamarack Beach Resort. The rooms include everything from coffee makers and refrigerators to DVD players and irons with boards. Hit an early-morning workout at the fitness center, then punch the clock and kick it with your co-workers with a game of pool in the rec room. Although there are conference and event spaces on-site, there’s a huge meeting space right across the street – Carlsbad State Beach.

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  • Carlsbad Seapointe Resort

    Resort
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    Carlsbad Seapointe Resort
    Courtesy of Carlsbad Seapointe Resort / Expedia

    With a state-of-the-art fitness center, two relaxing hot tubs and sweeping ocean views that never get old, Carlsbad Seapointe Resort is paradise. However, the kids will likely ignore the beach and beg you to visit Legoland California instead. When you’re not buying another 100 mini bricks, take advantage of the resort’s separate kiddie pool, playground and host of fun activities for the little ones. It also provides free transportation to 7 Mile Kitchen, where a well-deserved bottle of wine awaits you.

    Grand Pacific Palisades

    Resort, Luxury
    4.1/5 (946 Reviews)
    Grand Pacific Palisades
    Courtesy of Grand Pacific Palisades / Expedia

    With a steam room for the parents, a game room for the kiddos and an on-site brewery and restaurant with local IPAs and chicken fingers, the Grand Pacific Palisades makes a family vacay a great one from start to finish. Directly across from the Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch and only a few steps more to the beach, these upscale condos are fit for the whole family.

    More info

    Surfhouse Boutique Hotel

    Boutique Hotel
    Map View
    Surfhouse Boutique Hotel
    Courtesy of Surfhouse Boutique Hotel / Booking.com

    Stoked for your surfing trip to SoCal? Surfhouse Boutique Hotel will give you the ultimate surf-inspired experience. Drop into Encinitas’s waves with a rented surfboard, or ride up and down the sand on a beach cruiser. Bum it on the beach, or bend into a yoga session as you get comfortable in the California lifestyle. Staying a little longer than most? Ask about the Surfhouse Van, and take your journey on the road for a few days.

    Carlsbad Inn Beach Resort

    Resort
    Map View
    Carlsbad Inn Beach Resort
    Courtesy of Carlsbad Inn Beach Resort / Expedia

    We’ve got 100 reasons why Carlsbad Inn Beach Resort is a fantastic weekend getaway, 25 of which are its weekly activities. Anyone up for pizza bingo or karaoke? Casino night or wine night? How about farmers’ markets, cinema under the stars and a bon voyage party with live music? There’s a full schedule of activities; all that’s missing is you. If you just want some solo time on the beach, the staff will gladly provide you with beach chairs, umbrellas, towels and boogie boards.

    These recommendations were updated on June 1, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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