7 Adrenaline-Inducing Ways to Discover Oceanside and Beyond


By Jenna Gabrial Gallagher

What better place than the edge of the world’s biggest, deepest ocean to really make the most of your one wild and precious life? 

From family-friendly activities like whale-watching excursions and helicopter rides, to testing your limits to the extreme at IRONMAN 70.3, when you stay at Mission Pacific Hotel in Oceanside, there’s no end to the heart-racing, jaw-dropping, memory-making ways to super-charge your adrenaline and have the adventure of a lifetime. Here are some of our favorites.

Go Up, Look Down

Get a gull’s eye view of Oceanside’s natural beauty — including our wide sandy beaches and cinematic horizons — as well as human-made attractions like our quaint New England-style harbor and Mission Pacific’s high-vibing Rooftop Bar, when you charter a Waverider Helicopter Tour. Choose from several shoreline and inland excursions — or customize one of your own — and capture exhilarating, unobstructed photographs by removing any or all of the chopper’s doors. The most popular tour leaves right before sunset and flies over Oceanside Pier, offering spectacular views of the sun sinking from the fiery sky and below the water’s edge.

Image courtesy of GoJump Oceanside

Take a Flying Leap

If you’re ready to take the plunge, GoJump Oceanside has you covered. The only coastal skydiving service in Southern California, GoJump offers unparalleled, open-air, total immersion Oceanside views with experienced, friendly professionals – the jump may go by quickly, but the memories of what you saw and felt — and the photographic and video evidence of your triumphant freefall — will last a lifetime.

IRONMAN sunset pool

Tri It All

Did you know that Southern California is the birthplace of the modern triathlon? The first swim-bike-run event to be called a triathlon was held in San Diego in 1974 and had 46 participants. Today, Oceanside is proud to be the first race on the annual North American circuit for IRONMAN 70.3 and hosts an average of more than 3,600 athletes. In honor of the event, which takes place April 1, 2023, Mission Pacific is offering an IRONMAN 70.3 hotel deal that’s within walking distance of the race. Receive a discounted $30 valet parking fee and up to 15 percent off your room rate when you book a standard room, plus reward yourself with the luxury amenities of Mission Pacific and our sister property, The Seabird Resort, including garden-to-table dishes and fresh-pressed juices at Piper, and rejuvenating treatments at Sunny’s Spa and Beauty Lounge.

Surf women and man

Ride the Tide

If you want to experience surfing the way the gods and Phil Edwards (the world’s first professional surfer, who grew up in O’Side) intended, look no further than right across the street from Mission Pacific where you can carve out some of Southern California’s best waves. If you’re new to the sport, get the basics with an on-land class with our Surf Concierge. Surfers at all levels can also join our Whitlock Surf Experience Surf Club to improve their skills, or book a 90-minute lesson with second-generation pro-surfer Duran Barr at our partner, North County Surf Academy.

Whale besties

Cruise for Whales

Nothing spikes the old adrenaline quite like coming within feet of a 60,000-pound gray whale — but maybe being out in the open sea with minke whales, fin whales, humpback whales and the occasional dolphin comes close. Through our partners, Oceanside Adventures, you can experience these thrills and more by booking a whale and dolphin watching cruise.

ebikes (1)

Wheel Around Town

There are plenty of easy breezy ways to explore Oceanside on two or three wheels, including renting a traditional or e-bike right outside Mission Pacific from our partner, Pedego. Should you be looking for something with a bit more horsepower, nearby Ride O’Side offers Fat Tire scooter rentals that go up to 20 MPH, or you can be chauffeured up and down Highway 101 in the open air on a guided Pegasus Side Car Tour.

Up, Up and Away

It’s about a 20-minute drive from Mission Pacific to catch your hot air balloon ride with Compass Balloons, but once in flight you will soar above the coastline in one of the most magical ways imaginable. Book a balloon for up to ten people for a sunset ride along the coast or go a little further inland for a sunrise tour over Temecula’s wine country.

Need for speed

Feel The Need For Speed

Mission Pacific has a high-flying experience custom made for fans of Top Gun and its 2022 follow-up Top Gun: Maverick. For $16,000, our exclusive Need for Speed Experience gets you and your wingman or wingwoman matching bomber jackets and RayBan shades; round-trip luxury car service from San Diego or Orange County Airports; two nights in our most expansive and luxurious suite, the 1,290-square foot Ethereal Suite, with original artwork, a spa bath, and sweeping ocean views; a skydiving session with former Naval aviators onto Oceanside Beach, followed by a celebratory Dom Perignon toast; private surf lessons with a professional surfer with commemorative custom David Barr surfboard; and a private dessert tasting at Top Gun House, home of the famous HIGH-pie, the historic Oceanside home on our property where Kelly McGillis’s character lived in the first film that has now been meticulously restored as the home of our famous HIGH-pies.