Encinitas is a beach city in the North County area of San Diego County. Encinitas is a Spanish name meaning "little oaks". The city was incorporated by 69.3% of the voters in 1986 from the communities of historic Encinitas, new Encinitas (Village Park, etc.), Leucadia, Cardiff-by-the-Sea, and Olivenhain. The communities retain their identities and distinctive flavors.
Encinitas lies on a rugged coastal terrain. The city is bisected by a low-lying coastal ridge that separates New and Old Encinitas. In the north of the city, the coast rises in elevation and the land is raised up in the form of many coastal bluffs. The city is surrounded by Batiquitos Lagoon and San Elijo Lagoon to the north and south, respectively.