"Ocean Beach AKA O.B.!!" Ocean Beach by lmkluque

Ocean Beach Travel Guide: 63 reviews and 130 photos

A Blast From The Past!!

Welcome to my Ocean Beach page,

Newport Avenue in OB is a nostalgic step into to the past. The late 1960's-early 1970's to be exact

If you'd like to get a feel for those wild, eclectic times, stroll up and down Newport Avenue, look in the shops--might find some surprises--eat at the restaurant of your choice and the Ocean Beach Hotel looks like a great place to "crash!"

However, there is an International Youth Hostel on Newport Avenue that seems to be a popular place for young people on a budget. Everytime I go by, the front porch is populated with coffee drinkers, letter writers and often at least one talented person strumming a guitar, but all enjoying a sunny day.

There are many "second-hand" stores along the street, some offering antiques, and most have some pretty interesting inventory, even "retro" clothes can be found here. You'll notice quite a few restaurants open early for breakfast, this is especially to serve the daily throng of surfers who come out here to catch the early morning waves before going to the office. Coffee shops, breakfast places and other restaurants are usually not of the "fine" dining type, but basic beach casual.

If you didn't grow-up during the 60' or 70's you might not recognize the "feel" of this area, but for those of us who did, it seems that the only thing missing is the jargon, "Wow" "Beautiful!" "Make Love Not War Man!"

Oh, and the music is different these days, "hootenannies" are gone and "acid rock" has given way to the popular sounds of the day.

I hope you enjoy your visit,
Linda

The Community of Ocean Beach

Another aspect of Ocean Beach is, of course, the beach. This commuinity of San Diego sits along the California coastline of the Great Pacific Ocean. It's development began much like those in Imperial Beach and Coronado, ambitious land developers set up a street grid and sold lots in 1887. Though this particular scheme--one of the original developers became Mayor of San Diego and years later in a case not related to OB, ended up in prison for fraud--went bust, other efforts followed, including a venture proposed by the president of the 1915 Panama-California Exposition who promoted Ocean Beach as a resort town.

However, the "resort" idea never seemed to catch on and it was the residents who held this community together over the lean years by offering neighborhood businesses a helping hand when things got tough. You can see evidence of that happening there today.

During WWII, residents played as active a role, supporting the servicemen stationed near, as possible. Those servicemen, Impressed by the strong sense of community, returned to make this their homes. By the 1950's the population of OB had grown considerably.

The creation of the Mission Bay resort area just north of OB and as a result of highway 101 giving way to Interstate 5, Ocean Beach became isolated, not as easy to get to as the other beach communities along the coast. The economy wasn't boosted by tourists but the residents didn't actually mind. They loved their community fiercely and enjoyed it's "small town" qualities.

Imagine the great upheaval when "hippies" started to move in to this "off the police's beaten path" section of San Diego and take over! The "Establishment," especially the old WWII War Heros and the "hippies" with their antidisestablishmentarianism, free-love and tendency to drug-use, were naturally at loggerheads. Eventually as the 70' rolled in, things mellowed a bit.

Today, the atmosphere in OB is still pretty mellow. War Heros have died out, hippies have grown old, the creation of the OB Municiple Pier attracted fishermen and the surf's as good as ever.

The biggest sign of change is the Starbucks on the corner!!!

Living in Ocean Beach!

Because so many people ask about relocating to San Diego, I've included information that gives an overview of what to expect in the community of Ocean Beach. If I haven't addressed an issue you are interested in, feel free to write and ask.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Not The Typical Tourist Haven
  • Cons:Not The Typical Tourist Haven
  • In a nutshell:An Unassuming Beach Community In San Diego
  • Last visit to Ocean Beach: Mar 2013
  • Intro Updated Jul 13, 2013
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Reviews (53)

Comments (16)

  • blueskyjohn's Profile Photo
    Oct 16, 2013 at 3:35 AM

    Excellent page Linda! Very informative and complete!

    • lmkluque's Profile Photo
      Oct 19, 2013 at 9:33 AM

      Thank you John for the visit, the rates and the kind words. I just noticed that it seems I haven't thanked you until now. Sorry for the delay. It' must be the age. :-)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Mar 8, 2012 at 3:13 PM

    I’m glad to hear that there is a part of San Diego with some 1960s atmosphere for those of us who remember that era.

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Oct 12, 2011 at 8:20 PM

    You write so well! I so appreciate the tour of Ocean Beach and it all sounds like fun to explore. Thank you for giving my such a delightful tour of OB. Excellent page Linda!

  • travelgourmet's Profile Photo
    Apr 27, 2009 at 3:09 PM

    Linda, I surfed this area in the late 50's, early 60's and remember the first coffee house in OB on Newport Ave, "Za".

  • Apr 20, 2008 at 10:41 PM

    Take the "J" out of JOB and you have OB. I love it here. I live here. BBQ house is the real deal.

  • Basaic's Profile Photo
    Feb 5, 2008 at 1:15 PM

    Sounds interesting.

  • SLLiew's Profile Photo
    Dec 9, 2007 at 10:18 AM

    Excellent page. Enjoyed reading about Ocean Beach. Such a great choice of restaurants and sports activities. Cheers, SL :)

  • May 31, 2007 at 7:17 PM

    OB IS THE BOMB!! CHECK OUT THE YEARLY STREET FAIR!

  • Sep 5, 2006 at 11:16 PM

    You pictured OB PERFECTLY... but left out Nati's Mexican Restaurant.They've been around forever, it's an institution and I'd drive from LA regularly, JUST to go to the Zoo and Nati's.(picante and jalepeno carrots as starters are amazing!)Salt the carrots.

  • matcrazy1's Profile Photo
    Mar 9, 2006 at 1:02 AM

    WOW! Linda, i am impressed, it's almost a completely new page! Perfect tips in each category. Haha, I like it: Beer is a reason I get up every afternoon :-)

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