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Carlsbad beach

Carlsbad is located 35 Miles North of San Diego, with a population of 105,328. Its scenic coastline that stretches 7 miles is enjoyed by residents and guests from all over.

Carlsbad is home to two world-renowned spa resorts: , Aviara – Four Seasons Resort, and La Costa Resort & Spa. Legoland has been great attraction to visit for families or visitors. It boasts more than 50 rides and shows for the family to enjoy. Carlsbad Flower Fields are also great to visit in the spring, where the foothills of Carlsbad metamorphose in to one of the most spectacular and coordinated displays of natural color and beauty anywhere in the world. They span nearly 50 Acres and are in bloom for approximately six to eight weeks each year – from early March through early May.

Carlsbad is also well-known to be the golf capital of the world, with holding two world-class golf resorts, and housing more than 30 golf industry businesses calling Carlsbad home. Having the gorgeous Blue Ocean to the west and the ridge lined mountain distant to the east, offers visitors magnificent views in this relaxing natural environment. Tennis is also largely known in Carlsbad, for each August the Annual Acura Classic is held at the renowned La Costa Resort & Spa.

Carlsbad also is home to a major regional shopping center, 16 auto dealers, 25 hotels for lodging tourist’s, and many land developers building single and multi-family housing in a variety of community settings.

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Carlsbad or “Village by the Sea,” is 48 square miles of rolling hills with seven miles of scenic coastline enjoyed by residents and guests who come to play. Located 35 miles north of San Diego and 86 miles south of Los Angeles, it is easily accessible from either city and well worth a drive up or down the coast  to see. Old world charm co-exists with modern day pleasure in a city where the oldest building in town dates back to 1887 and the newest Legoland amusement park has been around just a few short years.

Carlsbad is named for the popular 19th century Karlsbad Spa in Europe. When sea captain, John Frazier, drilled a well and struck water in the 1880s, it appeared to have the same mineral properties as water in Karlsbad, Bohemia. Continuing a proud tradition for which the city was named, Carlsbad is home to two world class spa resorts: La Costa Resort & Spa and Four Seasons Resort, Aviara.

This charming city by the sea attracts guests from around the world and is also flower friendly as a premier growing region for poinsettias and ranunculus.

Beginning in March and running for several months, flower lovers are abuzz at the arrival of spring which brings an endless sea of colors to local fields. People come from near and far and pay a small fee to get a glimpse of nature’s  perfect beauty. The bird of paradise got its start here and is the city’s official flower.

Legoland theme park, Carlsbad flower fields, a downtown shopping village with a European flavor, a shopping mall and family oriented vacation beaches are a few of the things you can do and see when you visit. There is also jetskiing, parasailing and sky diving for additional thrills.

If golf is your bag, there’s Aviara, an 18-hole public course, Rancho Carlsbad, a public 18-hole executive course and Encinitas Ranch, 18-hole public course.

LaCosta Resort offers two 18-hole courses open to hotel guests and Shadowridge/ Vista features an 18-hole private course as does Vista Valley Country Club.

Easily accessible by car, train, bus or plane, travelers can rest assured they are in a safe community where you can sleep soundly knowing that the location  has no earthquake fault zone. (A fault zone is a region with a higher incidence or likelihood of earthquake activity). This is just one of the many features of a vacation in a the hospitable place which welcomes travelers and treats them well.

Although the “village” dates back more than 100 years, the City was incorporated July 16, 1952. At that time, Carlsbad had a population of approximately 7,000 people and covered 7.5 square miles. Since its incorporation, the City has grown substantially in population and size (through annexations). As of January 1, 1998, the population of Carlsbad was 73, 688 and the City encompasses approximately 42 square miles. There will be no foreseeable growth in the land size of Carlsbad because all County islands have been annexed. At build out, sometime beyond the year 2010, there will be at most 54,599 residential units in Carlsbad, housing approximately 135,000 residents. The dwelling unit cap was ratified by the voters of Carlsbad in the November 1986 election and can only be increased by a majority vote of the people.

Industries in the area include a major regional shopping center, 16 auto dealers, 25 hotels offering 2,200 rooms for tourist lodging, high technology, multimedia and biomedical businesses, electronics, golf apparel and equipment manufacturers, several business and light industry parks, and numerous land developers building single and multi-family housing in a variety of community settings. Carlsbad residents enjoy the benefits of a full service City.

The City of Carlsbad is a general law city. This means the City follows the general laws of the State of California rather than having a specific charter of its own. It is a municipal corporation following the Council-Manager form of government.

The City Council is the community’s legislative body. The Council enacts laws know as ordinances; sets policies known as resolutions; and, adopts an annual budget. The Mayor and four City Council members are elected city-wide by registered voters in the City of Carlsbad. These officials typically serve four- year terms. Also elected for four-year terms are the City Clerk and the City Treasurer.

The Council hires the City Manager and the City Attorney who serve at the pleasure of the City Council. The City Manager serves as the City’s chief administrative officer and sees to it the Council’s programs are implemented. The duties of the City Manager are detailed in the Carlsbad Municipal Code, Chapter 2.12.

The City Attorney is the City’s principal legal advisor responsible for making  sure that ordinances, resolutions and contracts are properly drawn and legally correct. The City Attorney also advises the staff and commissions upon request. Duties of the City Attorney are detailed in Carlsbad Municipal Code, Chapter 2.14.

The City provides a full range of services normally associated with a munici- pality including police, fire, parks and recreation, library, planning and zoning, building and engineering, various maintenance services and administration. The City provides water services through the Carlsbad Municipal Water District, subsidiary district of the City. The City Council serves as the Board of Directors for the Carlsbad Municipal Water District. Solid waste collection is provided through a franchise agreement with a local refuse collection service.

The Organizational Structure for the City of Carlsbad provides specialized support for five major services areas. The goals and objectives of each department are outlined in the annual operating budget, which is on file at the City Clerk’s Office and each library.


The following is a brief history of Carlsbad including some select photographs. For more information on the history, events, and people of Carlsbad, see the recently published book Windows on the Past.

The Community of Carlsbad is named for a popular 19th century spa in Europe but its history reflects the heritage of many cultures. Luiseno Indians camped on the shores of its coastal lagoon for centuries before the arrival of Don Gaspar de Portola and Fr. Juan Crespi in 1769. Blazing the trail now known as El Camino Real, the conquistador and Franciscan priests were exploring Alta California for the King of Spain. It was during a rest stop, upwind from an old fishing camp, that their weary troops christened the lagoon for posterity: Agua Hedionda (Stinking Water).

Following in their footsteps were more soldiers and priests, sent to establish missions and pueblos to ensure Spain’s hold on its remote territory. Mission San Luis Rey was founded ten miles north of Agua Hedionda lagoon in 1798. Five years after Mexico won its independence from Spain in 1821, the Franciscans lost their jurisdiction over the Indian converts. In 1833 the rich mission holdings were secularized, making them available by grants from the Mexican government. Although the land grants were to be distributed to all, it was the influential Californios, the second generation Hispanics, who ended up with most of them.

Thirteen thousand acres surrounding Agua Hedionda Lagoon were claimed in 1843 by Juan Maria Romouldo Marron. He and his wife operated several businesses in San Diego, coming to run cattle at Rancho Agua Hedionda only in the summer. When Marron died in 1853, his family’s hold on the ranch became tenuous.

Foreclosure in 1860 put Rancho Agua Hedionda into the hands of Francis J. Hinton, an American. When Hinton died in 1870, he left Rancho Agua Hedionda to Robert Kelly, his Irish born domo, who in turn, passed it on to nine nieces and nephews after his death in 1890.

The children of his older brother Matthew came in 1868 to homestead “Los Kiotes,” 10,000 acres immediately south of Rancho Agua Hedionda. Kelly descendants have continued to maintain their separate portion of the rancho to this day, but perhaps the most significant aspect of “Uncle Robert’s” legacy was the 40-acre coastal right-of-way which he deeded to the railroad in the early 1880s. With the coming of the Arizona Eastern Railway in 1883, the land between Los Angeles and San Diego was opened up to homesteaders and real estate speculators.

John Frazier, founder and director of the Good Samaritan Mission in Los Angeles, took over a homestead claim of 127 acres north and west of Rancho Agua Hedionda. He tapped the springs of both artesian and mineral water in  the well that he dug. The cool sips of water that he graciously offered to thirsty train passengers became famous for their apparent healing powers, and Frazier’s Station soon was anticipated as a destination of its own.

In 1886, Gerhard Schutte and Samuel Church Smith, two Nebraskans with dreams of building a town of “small farms and gracious homes,” purchased Frazier’s holdings plus 275 adjoining acres and embarked on the promotion of their new project. Their plans were further bolstered when chemical analysis of the well’s mineral water indicated properties identical to those of a famous health spa in Karlsbad, Bohemia. This intelligence combined with the German origins of town founder Schutte to determine that the name of the community would be Carlsbad.

The economic roller coaster of the 1880s and 1890s dictated the fortunes of Carlsbad’s earliest years. The population hovered around 300 until 1914, when railroad money brought in by South Coast Land Company secured water rights from Oceanside. Dry farming, the town’s principle industry, was immediately expanded to include propagation of flowers, bulbs and fruit orchards, including the exotic avocado. The railroad packing shed became a vital hub of the community while an obvious increase in beach campers and other tourists indicated that people, as well as plants, were benefited by Carlsbad’s climate and setting.

In 1915, Roy G. Chase became the Station Master in Carlsbad’s 1880s Victorian Depot. Before long, he opened a general store, became a real estate salesman and the operator of a trucking and construction company. His position as the leader of the town’s business community was recognized when he organized  the Chamber of Commerce in 1922.

By the mid-twenties, Carlsbad had its own school district, several new  churches, a movie theater and a weekly newspaper, the “Carlsbad Journal.” The Depression was weathered with the economic support of a new group of  settlers from Los Angeles. They were writers, directors and other members of the Hollywood film industry who built second homes and devoted their weekends to gentleman farming.

Proximity to a new Marine Corps Base at Camp Pendleton brought the world to Carlsbad’s doorstep after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. The post-war boom that followed V-J Day was based largely on the return of veterans to the sleepy little beach town of their wartime memories.

Recognition that the growing pains could best be eased by incorporation led to the formation of the City of Carlsbad in 1952. Since then, although the population has increased nearly 700 percent and the area of the city has expanded to three times its original size, much remains the same. Amid the shopping centers, industrial parks and housing tracts punctuating the hills and valleys of Rancho Agua Hedionda are many vistas that would be recognized by the Luiseno, the Hispanics and Yankee rancheros. To the west and north, the friendly small-town atmosphere envisioned by Schutte and Smith remains a feature of Carlsbad’s historic downtown.


San Diego Gas & Electric

Mail Payments to:


P.O. Box 25111 / Santa Ana, CA 92799-5111 (800) 411-7343


Time Warner (760) 707-1000



Waste Management

1635 Faraday Avenue / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 929-9400

Carlsbad Municipal Water District

1635 Faraday Avenue / Carlsbad, CA 92008 Phone: (760) 602-2420



Carlsbad’s great beaches, local attractions, world class resorts, shopping and restaurants set the standard for being a complete vacation destination. The following links are provided to help you learn a little more about Carlsbad and what we have to offer our visitors.


LEGOLAND® California has more than super 50 rides, shows and attractions for the whole family to enjoy. Our park is specifically geared towards children ages 2-12. Information by Phone: Please call (760) 918-5346 for general information, including Admission Prices, Park Hours and Parking Prices.

The Flower Fields

Each spring, the foothills of Carlsbad are transformed into a rainbow of vibrant colors. The Flower Fields host thousands of visitors from all over the world every year, during the peak ranunculus blooming season of March and April.

This spectacular show of mother nature is unique to North America.

Museum of Making Music

located on the hill just above the world famous Flower Fields, opened to the public in March 2000. It presents visitors with a nostalgic journey through a century of musical instruments and innovations that has helped shape popular music from 1890s to the present day. Guests can see over 500 vintage instruments, hear a wide variety of music and video samples of popular music through the decades and play on over a dozen hands-on instruments in the Museum’s Interactive Area. The Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 AM – 5 PM. For information, call (760) 438-5996.


Carlsbad is well known as the golf capital of the world, with two world class golf resorts and more than 30 golf industry businesses calling Carlsbad home. A beautiful municipal golf course, set amongst rolling hills, will begin construction in the very near future.

With the sparkling blue Pacific Ocean to the west and the Southern California Peninsular Mountain Ranges in the distance to the east, this state-of-the-art, 18-hole championship municipal golf course and event facility offers visitors magnificent views and a relaxing natural environment. Developed and owned by the City of Carlsbad, this public course is nestled among more than 1,000 acres of Carlsbad’s coastal terrain and natural habitat. It’s home to wetlands, sage brush and other plant, animal and bird life.

Named for the five bridges – or crossings – that were designed into the course to meet existing environmental and topographic conditions, The Crossings at Carlsbad also features a lighted practice center and access to The Crossings Trail, a three-mile round-trip walking path that links with the Carlsbad’s extensive Trail System.

The Crossings also offers a 28,000-square-foot clubhouse complete with a golf shop, banquet facilities, a spacious fireplace-lit dining room, full-service kitchen and an outdoor deck with ocean views. The Canyons restaurant, located in the clubhouse, will serve breakfast and lunch daily.


The Annual Acura Classic is held each August at the world renowned La Costa Resort and Spa. Tennis enthusiasts converge to watch the world’s top seeded women tennis players compete in Carlsbad.

City Parks and Recreation

Carlsbad is home to many City parks which offer a variety of leisure activities, including softball, volleyball, soccer in addition to providing playground equipment and picnic tables.

Jazz Concerts

Jazz concerts in the park have become a summer tradition in Carlsbad. Every Friday evening, a thousand or more jazz enthusiasts bring their picnic baskets and chairs to enjoy a FREE concert under the stars at one of Carlsbad’s beautiful Community Parks. For more information call (760) 434-2904.


School Districts

Carlsbad Unified School District (K-12)

6225 El Camino Real / Carlsbad, CA 92009

(760) 331-5000 (760) 431-6707 Fax /

Encinitas Union School District (K-6)

101 S Rancho Santa Fe Rd / Encinitas, CA 92024

(760) 944-4300 (760) 942-7094 Fax /

San Dieguito Union High School District

710 Encinitas Blvd 1 / Encinitas, CA 92024

(760) 753-6491 (760) 943-3501 Fax /

San Marcos Unified School District

Civic Center Dr #300 / San Marcos, CA 92069

(760) 744-4776 (760) 471-4928 Fax /


Elementary Schools

Carlsbad Union School District Elementary Schools

Aviara Oaks (K-5)

6900 Ambrosia Lane / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 331-6000 /

Buena Vista (K-6)

1330 Buena Vista Way / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5400 /

Calavera Hills (K-6)

4100 Tamarack Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-6300

Hope (K-6)

3010 Tamarack Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5900 /

Jefferson (K-6)

3743 Jefferson St / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5500 /

Kelly (K-6)

4885 Kelly Dr / Carlsbad, CA 92008

(760) 331-5800 /

Magnolia (K-6)

1905 Magnolia Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5600 /

Pacific Rim (K-5)

1100 Camino de las Ondas / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 331-6200 /

Poinsettia (K-5)

2445 Mica Road / Carlsbad, CA 92009

(760) 331-6500 /


Encinitas Union School District Elementary Schools

La Costa Heights Elementary (K-6)

3035 Levante / Carlsbad, CA 92009

(760) 944-4375

Mission Estancia (K-6)

3330 Calle Barcelona / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 943-2004

Olivenhain Pioneer Elementary (K-6)

8000 Calle Acervo / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 943-2000

El Camino Creek Elementary

7885 Paseo Aliso / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 943-2051

San Marcos Unified School District Elementary Schools

La Costa Meadows Elementary

6889 El Fuerte / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 290-2121

Carrillo Elementary

2875 Poinsettia Drive / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 290-2900


Middle Schools

Carlsbad District Junior High Schools

Aviara Oaks Middle School (6-8)

6900 Ambrosa Lane / Carlsbad, CA 92009 (760) 331-5900 /

Calavera Hills Middle School (6-8)

4104 Tamarack Avenue / Carlsbad, CA 92010 (760) 331-6400 /

Valley Middle School (7-8)

1645 Magnolia Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5300 /

San Dieguito District Junior High School

Oak Crest Middle School (7-8)

675 Balour Dr / Encinitas, CA 92024 (760) 753-6241


High Schools

Carlsbad District High Schools

Carlsbad High School

3557 Lancer Way / Carlsbad, CA 92008 (760) 331-5100 /

Carlsbad Village Academy (9-12)

1640 Magnolia Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 331-5200

Sage Creek

3900 Cannon Road / Carlsbad, CA 92010

(760) 331-6600 /

San Dieguito District High School

La Costa Canyon High School (9-12)

3451 Camino de los Coches / Carlsbad, CA 92009 / (760) 436-6136

San Dieguito Academy (9-12)

800 Santa Fe Dr / Encinitas, CA 92024 / (760) 753-1121


K-12 Alternative Education

Carlsbad Seaside Academy

1640 Magnolia Avenue / Carlsbad, CA 92008

(760) 331-5100 /


Private Schools

Abc Children’s Center (PreK-K)

2634 El Camino Real / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 434-7143

Army And Navy Academy (7-12)

P.O. Box 3000 / Carlsbad CA 92108 / (760) 729-1492

Beautiful Saviour Lutheran School (K-8)

3030 Valley Street / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 729-6272

Carlsbad Montessori School Inc (PreK-6)

740 Pine Ave / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 434-4161

Casa Montessori De Carlsbad (K)

3470 Madison St / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 729-4455

Discovery Isle Child Dev Center (K)

6130 Paseo Del Norte / Carlsbad, CA 92009 / (760) 431-7090

International Montessori Ed Center (PreK-6)

740 Pine Ave, Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 434-0510

Pacific Ridge School (7-12)

6269 El Fuerte Street / Carlsbad, CA 92009 / (760) 448-9820

Palisades Point Chritian Academy (1-12)

1807 Palisades Dr / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / 760-434-2537

St Patrick (K-8)

3820 Pio Pico / Carlsbad, CA 92008 / (760) 729-1333