Vista is a hillside city in the northwest part of San Diego County, located just 7 miles from the coast and only 18.7 square miles in size.

With ideal weather, even a little warmer than the coastal locations, the lovely Mediterranean climate is in full effect in Vista. Average high temperatures range from 65° F in December to 81° F in August, while the average lows range from 44° F in December to 62° F in August. Vista, like most of the cities of San Diego County receives minimal rainfall, only 13.24 inches which mostly falls between November and April.

The population was reported at 93,834 as of the 2010 US Census and is estimated at 98,079 as of 2014. The population breakdown was 26.7% under the age of 18, 12.5% aged 18 to 24, 29.5% aged 25 to 44, 22.0% aged 45 to 64, and 9.2% of the population who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31.1 years.

Median family income for Vista is $45,649, a good deal lower than the CA state average of $53,025 and surrounding communities (according to

Vista is served by 2 public school districts with over 50 schools. However, the number of private and catholic schools in the area is many times the number of public schools.

The Tri-City Medical Center in nearby Oceanside is only 3 miles away, while the Palomar Medical Center in Escondido is 10 miles in distance. Overall, there are 10 regional hospitals within 24 miles of the center of Vista.

There are over 800 businesses in the Vista Business Park, making their headquarters, manufacturing, distribution and marketing homes here.

Recreation and Public Amenities

The Vista Village area is the main entertainment district where the biggest festivals and events take place. A lively and creative area filled with restaurants, pubs, live music, it’s also home to the Winterfest & Bazaar and Alley Art Festival. The AVO Playhouse is here too, which hosts various theatre and musical performances and events.

The renowned Moonlight Amphitheater offers high quality theater productions, rivaling many larger theater productions. Located in Vista’s Brengle Terrace Park, it’s great place to see an outdoor performance and you can bring a picnic dinner to enjoy on the lawn seating. Stage productions are normally scheduled from April through October.

Other big attractions include the Krikorian Theaters, Wave Water Park, and Alta Vista Gardens (a serene botanical park). Also, museum lovers will enjoy the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum and the annual Fall Antique Engine and Tractor Show.

Numerous restaurants and nightlife venues are scattered throughout the city. The city hosts a summer Movies in the Park series of free outdoor movies. Also, the Vista City Library has a large and lively calendar of diverse events for all ages. The city also runs a variety of creative art programs and exhibitions in its Public Art Program, with numerous public art programs of murals and sculptures in the Vista Village area.

There are 13 public parks in the city including a dog park, several sports parks and the Wave Waterpark.

There are 2 private golf courses in Vista – Shadowridge Golf Course and Vista Valley Country Club. However, there 27 public and private courses within 10 miles of Vista, many just next door in the neighboring cities of Carlsbad, Oceanside, San Marcos and Encinitas.

The Gloria McClellan Adult Activity & Resource Center

This senior center offers many activities, programs and classes. Located in the Brengle Terrace Park area, the center focuses on promoting the physical, emotional and social well-being of seniors and helping to get them involved in different aspects of community life.

With opportunities for entertainment or socializing, taking exercise classes or a day trips, the center’s goal is to make retirement fun. Seniors here take advantage opportunities to travel, learn new skills, or even new careers and giving back to the community. The center also provides door-to-door transportation for senior and disabled Vista residents.

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Where to Retire in San Diego County – Southern California

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