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Neighborhood Spotlight: San Marcos

Nestled in the charming foothills of northern San Diego County is San Marcos, a growing community of over 90,000 residents who enjoy a terrific quality of life.
About San Marcos
San Marcos is the Spanish name of Saint Mark and was derived from an 18th-Century historical legend where Spanish troops were robbed by a small band of Native Americans who escaped to the hills. During the pursuit of the Native Americans, the Spanish came across a fertile valley which was named Los Vallecitos de San Marcos (which means Little Valleys of Saint Mark). 
To honor this day of discovery, April 25th has been set as St. Mark’s Day. 
The original town of San Marcos was about a mile north of Barham, at the intersection of what is now Grand Avenue and Rancho Santa Fe Road. San Marcos experienced a period of growth from 1956 onward. Several small businesses were founded in the 70s and the population rapidly increased. The city has continued to flourish as the third fastest-growing city in the state. 
Over the past few years, San Marcos has experienced accelerated growth while maintaining its small-town vibe and values.
With plenty to see and do, San Marcos proves to be one of the most pleasant cities to live in. It also serves as an educational hub for northern San Diego County. 

San Marcos Real Estate Market

San Marcos has a diversified housing market. Home to award-winning San Elijo Hills and other master planned communities, San Marcos is the leader in providing quality housing with a wide range of prices and designs.
The median home value in San Marcos is $550,800 as per Zillow.com, and the median rent is $1,318. San Marcos also has a strong rental market that appeals to students.
Miles of trails sprawled throughout the local hills, a dedication to parks and community services, plenty of unique dining and shopping opportunities, and its stellar retail centers set San Marcos up to make life for locals and visitors enjoyable. 
With a focus on quality community development and services, the city has constructed 60 miles of trails, 29 new parks, and 11 recreation centers over the past 25 years. 
Developments like the Creekside Marketplace, Nordahl Center and Grand Plaza have all become popular shopping and dining destinations, and plans for thoughtful future developments like the San Marcos Downtown Creek District, Palomar Station and University Village will quickly put San Marcos on the map as a regional shopping, dining, and entertainment destination.
Known for having some of the best restaurants in North County Old California Restaurant Row has become North County's largest dining and entertainment experience with fourteen restaurants and an Edwards Stadium 18 Cinema Complex.
The San Marcos Unified School District is one of the largest school districts in San Diego County. It includes 20 schools with diverse educational programs for kindergarten through adult education and has become the heart of education in northern San Diego County. It is home to an award-winning school district, Palomar Community College and California State University San Marcos. Additional educational institutes also include San Marcos Unified School District and the University of St. Augustine.
Community theatre, music and fine arts groups are also thriving in San Marcos. The City’s own “Theatre West” group presents spectacular community theatre production, while the California Center for the Arts in Escondido and the Performing Arts Center at Palomar College both bring quality entertainment to the area.
Nearby Areas Include


Located along the SPRINTER commuter rail line with excellent bus service, San Marcos has a solid transportation network. 
The City is located along Highway 78 and has six interchanges along that route, with easy access to Interstates 5 and 15. Several airports are also close by, including Carlsbad/Palomar Airport (6 miles), San Diego Airport (35 miles) and Orange County Airport (60 miles).
It’s a 35-mile drive south which takes you to downtown San Diego and a short drive west to get to the beautiful shores of the Pacific Ocean.
Serving the largest student population in North County, easy commutes are also available to other colleges and universities, as well as several employee skills training opportunities.

Top Things To See & Do NearbY

A few of the popular things to see and do nearby include:
  • Double Peak Park
  • Discovery Lake
  • St. Mark Golf Club
  • Rip Current Brewing
  • Twin Oaks Golf Course
  • Dos Desperados Brewery
  • Jack’s Pond Park & Nature Center

Overall Impression

A strong central North County location with excellent educational opportunities, low crime rates, and a thriving economy combined with enviable weather, an excellent transportation network and a focus on community development makes San Marcos a great place to live and buy a home for families, students, and young professionals.

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John and Melissa Steele, San Diego Real Estate Agents

John and Melissa Steele