Carlsbad Village Faire May 1

Art in Carlsbad

The Carlsbad Village Faire, one of the area’s favorite arts and craft fairs, returns Sunday May 1.

The Carlsbad Village Street Faire is said to be the largest outdoor 1-day fair in the US. Its counter-part, the November Carlsbad Village Faire, may be as large.

The Faire runs from 8 am until 5 pm, so you have plenty of time to see everything and shop to your heart’s content.

The Carlsbad Village Faire is held in the heart of town, along Grand Avenue from Carlsbad Boulevard to Jefferson. The Faire spills over onto side streets, including State Street over to Carlsbad Village Drive. (photo is from a different art fair in the Village).

art fair in Carlsbad

The Village Faire is not to be confused with the shopping center by the same name on Carlsbad Village Drive.

Signs are already out warning everyone about this special event. The reason? Much of the parking on these streets will not be available due to the vendor booths.

The Carlsbad Village Faire is pretty impressive. Having attended several times I think it’s fair to say there is something for everyone, with over 750 vendors.

Plus you are surrounded by numerous local Carlsbad Village retailers if you tire of the Street Faire.


They say to plan on a crowd of 85,000, perhaps more, so it will be busy.

So what can you expect to see? Clothing, arts and crafts, gift items, home goods and accessories, collectibles, plants and garden items, antiques, and more.

There will also be an international food center and traditional pancake breakfast.

You can also explore restaurants and retailers in the Carlsbad Village area on the side streets. Or visit the popular Village Faire Shopping Center north of the railroad tracks.

The Carlsbad beaches are just a couple of blocks away to enjoy before or after the fair, too.


Parking will be very limited due to the crowds, with many spaces taken up by Carlsbad Village Faire vendors, so arrive early. The good news is that parking is free in Carlsbad. Keep in mind handicap parking will also be limited.

You may want to take advantage of free shuttles offered throughout the day. The shuttles run at roughly 15-minute intervals. One shuttle stop is at the parking lot at the northwest corner of Sears at The Shoppes at Carlsbad. There is a 2nd shuttle from the Poinsettia Coaster Station on Avenida Encinas.

Here’s another travel option. The Carlsbad Village train station is close by and additional trains will run that day according to NCTD.