Our Ocean Beach San Diego real estate spotlight focuses on one of San Diego’s best beach communities.
Popularly called “OB”, this casual seaside town sits under the upscale hillside neighborhood of Point Loma to its east and the Pacific Ocean on its west.
Known as one of San Diego’s “laid back” and “quiet” neighborhoods. In spite of sitting on prime waterfront real estate, it maintains a small town atmosphere. A very tight-knit neighborhood where locals call themselves “OBceans”. You pronounce that as “Oh-BEE-Shuns”.
The fierce independence of OB keeps commercialism at a minimum. Instead of multiple fast food chains, Ocean Beach maintains a popular food co-op.
Ocean Beach San Diego Real Estate Spotlight History
Originally named “Mussel Beach” due to the vast amount of mussels found there. The name Ocean Beach originated from developers Albert Higgins and Billy Carson in 1887. They built a resort hotel called the Cliff House. They also subdivided the surrounding land into lots.
In 1887, D.C. Collier bought oceanfront properties while only 16 years old. He became the “father” of Ocean Beach by developing streets and selling lots. He also built the Point Loma Railroad in 1909 connecting San Diego to Ocean Beach.
In 1916, surfing came to Ocean Beach and the rest of San Diego later on. Surfing began when Duke Kahanamoku let an OB lifeguard borrow a board. In 1966, surfing in San Diego’s Ocean Beach established itself with the World Surfing Championship held at OB.
The Ocean Beach Historic District consists of the Ocean Beach Cottage District where many cottages, Craftsman bungalows, and other buildings built between 1887 and 1931.
Ocean Beach Community
Basically, the Ocean Beach economy relies on independent, small retail businesses.
OB also contains a U.S. post office, a public library, many churches, and their famous vegetarian food co-op.
OB organizations include:
- The Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association;
- Ocean Beach Town Council;
- Ocean Beach Historical Society;
- Ocean Beach Planning Board; and
- Kiwanis Club.
Ocean Beach Activities
OB local events include:
Farmer’s Market every Wednesday afternoon from 4 pm to 8 pm taking up a closed two-block area on Newport Ave. Offering locally grown fruits, produce, flowers, along with arts & crafts;
Ocean Beach Kite Festival on the second Saturday in May;
Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off in late June, usually 10 am to 8 pm. More than 40 years as a local festival for all ages. Chili, arts and crafts, various foods, and live beachfront entertainment. Over 70,000 visitors every year.
Jazz Festival in late September at the foot of Newport Ave.;
OB Oktoberfest during the mid-October weekend celebrating German culture, beers, foods, and fun.
Ocean Beach Canine Carnival on Sunday before Halloween in October; and
Ocean Beach Holiday Parade in early December.
Other Things to Do in Ocean Beach
The Ocean Beach Municipal Pier, built in 1966. The West Coast’s longest concrete pier at 1,970 feet. Its concrete walkway expands along 1 mile of the beach. The pier contains the Ocean Beach Pier Cafe (a bait shop and restaurant). The pier remains open 24 hours per day.
Dog Beach located at the northern end of the OB waterfront. Open 24 hours per day allowing free run by leash-free dogs since 1972. Dogs, surfers, and others celebrate one of the first leash-free beaches in America.
Long Branch Avenue Beach begins at the dead end of the residential Long Branch Ave. Popular for its many volleyball posts. However, nets not supplied, so bring your own net. Enjoy the weekend beach volleyball league games.
Newport Avenue Beach the most popular beach in OB. Very popular with photographers who find many interesting things to shoot. Also, surfers love the “big waves”.
Niagara Avenue Beach near the Ocean Beach Pier offering tide pools for close up viewing of ocean life.
Saratoga Avenue Beach offers a family friendly beach much quieter than Voltaire Street Beach and Newport Ave. Beach. Body surfers and boogie boarders love this beach! The huge grassy area near the lifeguard station also popular with picnicking. Provides food, showers, parking, lifeguards, and a nice beach.
Voltaire Street Beach located down the hill from Point Loma at the dead end of Voltaire Street. Popular with the locals who also enjoy the nearby bars, eateries, and shops. Also maintains a large grassy lawn with picnic tables.
OB Self-Guided Historic Walk views their online tour brochure to enjoy the old buildings dating back to the early 1900s.
Strolling on Newport Avenue, OB’s main drag and business district. Absorb its small-town feel.
4th of July Fireworks on Ocean Beach features a spectacular fireworks display off the OB Pier starting at 9 pm.
Ocean Beach Restaurants
Bo-Beau Kitchen & Bar provides a romantic setting with a candlelit cozy dining room offering upscale French cuisine.
Hodad’s offers huge burgers in a casual eating spot.
South Beach Bar & Grill for their fresh fish tacos.
Kaiserhof serving authentic German cuisine and beers.
Old Townhouse Restaurant for the best diner-style breakfasts.
Trip Advisor Ocean Beach Restaurants
Hodad’s received 4 Stars (out of 5) from over 2,000 reviewers. Best burgers in Ocean Beach.
Jungle Java another 4 Star recipient for their coffees, teas, and baked goodies.
Pizza Port Ocean Beach got 4.5 Stars as the best pizza in Ocean Beach.
Gallagher’s Irish Pub earned 4 Stars for their Irish whiskeys (over 20 of them), Irish cocktails, and Irish coffee.
Ocean Beach Bars
But, also nice venues with live entertainment including:
Winstons Beach Club provides live music including Reggae, Rock & Roll, and basic Jam bands. They also host comedy shows.
Arizona Cafe, a former dive bar which cleaned up its act. Locals consider it a “cool hangout” to watch sporting events on their big TV’s and playing pool on their many tables.
Ocean Beach Shopping
Sunshine Daydreams a small chic clothing boutique earning 4 Stars from Yelp.
Ocean Beach Antique District located on Newport Ave. offers vintage clothes, furniture, and home goods at several small shops.
The Black Smoke Shop, a local favorite and neighborhood tradition. A mix between head shop, record store, and novelty items. Think “Hippie” times still alive in OB.
Black Bead showcasing a magnet for jewelry lovers.
Ocean Beach San Diego real estate spotlight shows how this casual small seaside town blossoms.
As one of San Diego’s most quiet and laid back towns, Ocean Beach offers year-round events, lots of beaches, and quality eateries.
Contact Us to learn about available Ocean Beach homes and condo units.
Steven Rich, MBA – Guest Blogger
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