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Neighborhood Guide: Vista

Where to eat, drink, shop, and explore in this city with a small-town feel
Justin Halbert

By Jeanette Giovanniello


Most of Vista’s treasures live just off Vista Village Drive / East Vista Way, the city’s main thoroughfare. Check out the tandoori chicken and paneer tikka masala at Bombay Cafe, where everything is cooked in tandoori ovens, the key to its flavor. Craving comfort food? Try the hearty shepherd’s pie at local haunt Vista Village Pub, or take your pick from their specialty hot dog selection.

Vista - Guadalupe

Guadalupe Brewery

Justin Halbert

If you’re itching for a sweet treat, neighborhood classics like Danny’s Donuts or Pepper Tree Frosty are worth the wait (and there will be a wait). The blueberry cake donut and chocolate-dipped cones have made these two adjacent shops household names. Just down the street, Little Cakes Kitchen doesn’t have to boast their two wins on Cupcake Wars to prove their greatness—the banana split and strawberry milkshake cupcakes do all the talking.

For your nightcap, continue the sweet streak at a few of Vista’s popular breweries. Guadalupe Brewery offers the Roasty Toasty stout for coconut lovers, as well as the creamy El Vainillo. Down the street, cozy up next to Belching Beaver’s outdoor fire pits with one of their famous peanut butter stouts. For a traditional brew, head to Prohibition Brewing for a classic pale ale. Coming soon to the craft beer hub are Barrel & Stave Pour House and Co-Lab Vistaa two-story brewery hall.

Vista - Twice

Twice on Main Street

Justin Halbert


Check out curated secondhand boutiques like Twice and Re-find Off Main to score repurposed graphic tees, hats, cowboy boots, and jewelry galore. If you’re still  searching for good finds after all that thrifting, head to Standards Record Store for cherished vinyl at reasonable prices. It doesn’t matter whether you’re into hip-hop or classic rock, just roam through the decades with the dollar bins full of 45s and crates packed with cassette tapes. Fashion lovers can go to Metaphor for flowy dresses and minimalist-inspired accessories.


Vista Conservancy Walking Trail’s new extension reopened access to the entire length of the trail, from Wildwood Park to Brengle Terrace Park. The oak-lined path stretches about a mile with bridges, creeks, and shady areas along the way. If you’d rather roam the streets, spend your Saturday strolling through the stands of over 80 local vendors at the weekly Vista Farmers Market from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. If you’re in search of a history lesson, Rancho Guajome Adobe is a perfect place to learn. The national landmark is an authentic adobe hacienda built in the 1850s. Today, visitors can tour the property, set up a picnic, or go for a walk on one of the many trails in the 112-acre Guajome County Park.

Rancho Guajome Adobe

Justin Halbert

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