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A Guide to San Diego's Suburbs
Real Estate

A Guide to San Diego's Suburbs

Pick a spot, plan a getaway to these small SoCal towns, and get ready to visit your potential future home in the suburbs of San Diego.

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5 min read

May 17, 2021

Thinking about moving to San Diego? We’re here to make the process a breeze. Amazing beaches, a bustling downtown, great weather, and gorgeous neighborhoods—the best San Diego suburbs have it all. Whether you want to escape to a secluded coastal enclave or live amongst a thriving urban community, the San Diego suburb of your dreams will give you all you need and more.

While this list is in no way conclusive, it gives you the gist of what San Diego's best suburbs to live in have to offer. Pick a spot, plan a getaway to these small SoCal towns, and get ready to visit your potential future home.

The best suburbs of San Diego

Del Mar is located north of La Jolla and 100 miles south of Los Angeles. This city is known for its racetracks and all-out county fairs.

Del Mar

Median home price: $2,662,000

Del Mar always ranks highly when it comes to the nicest suburbs of San Diego. The beach city is simultaneously suburban and urban. Restaurants, coffee shops, parks, and hiking and biking trails are abundant in one of the best neighborhoods to live in San Diego. 

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While it does come with a hefty price tag, the perks of Del Mar are hard to beat when it comes to San Diego suburbs for families. The public schools are amazing, the streets are safe, and the community members are friendly.

Solana Beach is a small town of around 12,000 residents that has an amazing coastline and plenty of interesting things to do.

Solana Beach

Median home price: $1,623,000

While Del Mar is best for families, Solana Beach is more attractive to young professionals. This suburban area in San Diego has a secluded coastal feel and a tight-knit community that makes it ideal for those who enjoy the beach and their privacy. You’ll find athletes, entrepreneurs, craftsmen, and microbiologists as your neighbors—this San Diego suburb perfectly reflects its community. 

If you’re strolling the beach with your pup when it isn’t high tide, you can make it to The Original Dog Beach, found a bit further on the shoreline. Sip a lemonade as you watch your dog have fun in the sun with the other pups at this massive canine-friendly beach. Though there isn’t much shopping and dining in Solana, you’ll have endless opportunities to splash around San Diego. Can you think of a better way to spend your day?

Just outside the city of San Diego is Coronado, a family-friendly resort town with no shortage of history, ghosts, sailors, and good food.

Coronado

Median home price: $2,049,000

Translating to “The Crowned One” in Spanish, Coronado is the San Diego suburb you’ve been wanting to visit. Living in this resort town feels like being on vacation year-round. You’ll enjoy amazing weather, pristine beaches, and great shopping and dining (getting bored is unheard of in Coronado). Cleanliness, safety, and a great public education are also a given in this suburb near San Diego.

While an eclectic mix of people live in Coronado, you’ll find that military and ex-military personnel are significantly more concentrated here than anywhere else in SoCal. So, while Coronado is a great fit for anyone, it’s definitely the best San Diego suburb for families of vets.

Encinitas is a city that's broken into five different neighborhoods. Each of these five regions has its own special flare.

Encinitas

Median home price: $1,332,00

The 60,000-plus population of Encinitas is mostly made up of families and young professionals. While exploring this San Diego suburb, take the time to wander the mom-and-pop shops, embrace the surf culture, and admire the art galleries. 

If you’re reminiscing about this mid-20th-century laid-back beach town, you’ll find that Encinitas is more urban than it used to be. Whether or not that’s a positive perk in your book, this region is often considered one of San Diego’s best neighborhoods to live in.

Encinitas is a top-notch San Diego suburb that consists of amazing beaches, trails, skateparks, and everything else you can think of. Not sure how to make up your mind? Pay a visit and you just might want to move here.

Carlsbad is an affluent seaside resort city occupying a seven-mile stretch of Pacific coastline in northern San Diego County.

Carlsbad

Median home price: $1,018,000

Carlsbad is one of the bigger San Diego suburbs on the list with a population of more than 100,000 residents. The “Village by the Sea” is a favorite among tourists because it has many of the top San Diego things to do within its vicinity. With pristine beaches and a bustling downtown, Carlsbad is a walkable suburb that you just can’t miss. 

As one of the best suburbs to live in San Diego, Carlsbad is popular with families, largely due to the great number of public schools. But, many surfers and outdoor enthusiasts also call this place their home thanks to the countless recreational opportunities. Given this, Carlsbad is undeniably one of the best suburbs of San Diego.

Chula Vista is home to the year-round training facility Olympic Training Center. The center is regularly utilized by Olympic athletes.

Chula Vista

Median home price: $641,000

While it may not be considered affordable by many other counties’ standards, Chula Vista is often ranked among the top affordable San Diego suburbs. But don’t be fooled by its relatively low cost of living—Chula Vista provides top-notch amenities comparable with other more pricey SoCal suburbs. In fact, living in Chula Vista means you’re most likely within walking distance of a park or garden. Chula Vista is the second largest city in the San Diego metropolitan area and is home to one of the country’s few year-round U.S. Olympic Training centers. 

Though it's one of the most affordable San Diego suburbs, the shopping and dining scene in Chula Vista is also incredible. Because it’s more ethnically diverse than other San Diego suburbs featured on the list, you’ll get to indulge in a wide variety of authentic cuisine without having to travel far. Chula Vista is also more liberal-leaning—the city offers relatively more job opportunities, as well as great universities and schools, making it the perfect spot for families.

Politicians, veterans, and children’s book writers are but a few of the celebrities who have called La Jolla home at one point in time.

La Jolla

Median home price: $1,874,000

It’s tough to resist the charms of the upscale San Diego suburb of La Jolla. Beautiful ocean views? You got it. Fine dining, trendy boutiques, and great schools? You’ll find them all over San Diego’s best neighborhood to live in—La Jolla has it all. But perhaps the best thing about living in this San Diego suburb is that you'll have easy access to everything. You’ll have the ocean in your backyard, and plenty of shopping and dining spots within close driving distance. It’s a win-win if you ask us.

The public schools in La Jolla are some of the best in the state, and safety is almost a non-issue. While the cost of living here is significantly higher than the national average, this San Diego suburb is a dream for those who can afford it. 

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