Encinitas featured in the San Francisco Chronic:
Encinitas, halfway between San Clemente and San Diego, is a vestige of classic California beach culture that has all but succumbed to stratospherically priced homes inhabited by a generation to whom "working on myself" means attaining washboard abs rather than enlightenment. But partly because Swami's Beach remains a holy grail to hard-core surfers, good vibrations endure here.
Diversions include watching world-class surfing, exploring the 100-year-old downtown and meandering in soul-soothing gardens. If you need a vacation from life as well as work, this is the place.
Encinitas Cafe, Kim's, Swami's, and Pipe's are the restaurants mentioned. The Ocean Inn in Leucadia gets a favorable review. The public-transpo-hating NorCs suggest arriving by car rather than by train or bike.