Del Mar is a seaside village with a wealth of natural attractions. A splendid beach defines the two-mile-long western boundary. Open space parks extend along most of the eastern side of town. Gentle canyons in these luxuriant natural preserves showcase forests of rare Torrey pines. Major lagoons border the northern and southern edges of the village. The picturesque enclave is also favored by mild weather year-round.
Del Mar has served as a prized seaside getaway from its beginning. In 1882, Col. Jacob Taylor (a former scout for Buffalo Bill Cody) laid out streets and built a hotel that burned and was replaced near the turn of the century by a larger seaside lodging more in keeping with the village=s quiet prosperity. In 1937, Bing Crosby and other Hollywood movie stars opened the Del Mar Racetrack. The rich and famous have been relaxing here ever since, along with increasing numbers of visitors who enjoy both the manmade and natural attractions.
Del Mar still has the size and feel of a village. The ocean, lagoons, and reserves of Torrey pines continue to frame and give stature to the locale. But, just beyond, burgeoning suburbs of the City of San Diego engulf it. Today, the racetrack and fairgrounds are among the biggest and best in America. The ocean-view hotel site in the heart of town is now a grand resort, in keeping with the village's tony status. New restaurants, galleries and specialty shopping complexes distinguish downtown, above a beachfront park. Beyond, tree-shaded streets wind past fashionable homes and gardens to the increasingly popular beach and pine preserves.