Subject: Re: Oceanside, California.
Hi Jan,

You don't have to worry about the weather in Oceanside. At the end of November it will feel like the tropics compared to Scotland. Most likely you will encounter sunny days and warm temperatures. Ideal for spending some time on the beach which you'll find right outside your condo door. Or you could walk out on the Oceanside pier and gaze down on the surfers riding the winter swells rolling in from the Gulf of Alaska. While strolling along the pier you can check out the luck of the fisherman. On occasion an angler has been known to pull in a thresher shark from the pilings below.

As you head back to your condo you might notice something familiar about the small Craftsmen homes nestled behind a line of mature palm trees on the street north of your complex. If you saw the movie "Top Gun" that's why it looks so familiar. The house at 102 Pacific St. was where Kelly McGillis' character Charlie lived.

Unfortunately Jan I can't be much help with dining choices in Oceanside with the exception of one breakfast place. The Longboard Cafe is a restaurant I visit once a year on Labor Day after my wife participates in the Oceanside Roughwater Swim. You'll find it on the corner of N.Coast Highway and Pier View Way, about 5 blocks from your condo. After seeing all the surf memorabilia on the walls you'll be primed for a visit to the California Surf Museum right across the street.

Oceanside is about a thirty minute drive from San Diego on the freeway. Twenty minutes north of Oceanside you begin to encounter the beach cities of south Orange County; San Clemente, Capistrano Beach, Dana Point and then on to Laguna Beach, Corona del Mar, and Newport Beach.

I know that the San Diego Wild Animal Park has been suggested. Just down the road from the park is the Orfila Winery which has a tasting room. Also closeby is the San Pasqual Battlefield, one of just a few California sites of hostilities between American and Mexican soldiers during the Mexican-American War. Here are the website links:

If you enjoy the winetasting you might consider visiting Temecula, a short 30 minutes from Oceanside. This inland valley has a number of wineries that offer tours and tasings. On the mountains overlooking Temecula you can visit what in its day was the world's preeminent astronomical observatory, the Palomar Observatory with its 200 inch Hale telescope. There are a number of campgrounds and parks up in the Palomar Mountains which offer ideal settings for a picnic. The elevation up in these mountains is above 4,000 ft. so be sure and bring along warm clothes. Also, don't forget to use a designated driver if you visit the wineries.

An additional activity you might coinsider would be to take a whale watching boat out for a cruise along the coast. the California Gray Whales will be making their annual migration from the Bering Sea down to the calving lagoons of Baja California. I'm not sure if any boats run out of Oceanside harbor, most likely, but, if not, you will be able to find some out of Dana Point to the north or San Diego to the south.

Jan, a search of the archive using "San Diego" will turn up several previous posts I've made about the area. These should be helpful for planning a visit down to San Diego and I believe include some suggestions in the North County near Oceanside

Have a good time. If you do come down to San Diego and want to try a GTG let me know.

John in San Diego