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8 Best Restaurants in Avila Beach, California [2024]

Looking for the best restaurants in Avila Beach? This little hamlet has more to offer than meets the eye, and no matter what you pick, beautiful ocean views are guaranteed!

Avila Beach may not be a gastronomic capital, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t good choices to eat any time of day. This gem of a town on the California Central Coast offers many things to do, considering its size, and the same is true for its cuisine.

Image by silverfox39 via DepositPhotos

From some of the best and freshest seafood you’ll ever try to delicious treats to indulge your sweet tooth, super healthy cafes, and European-style bistros, there is a little something for everyone in Avila Beach, if you know where to look. Let’s check out the options!

Custom House

If you like to eat quality food while sitting at an outdoor patio enjoying views of the ocean (and who doesn’t?), then head to Custom House restaurant, on Avila Beach’s lovely promenade. With a relaxed atmosphere and amazing views, they have a very extensive menu, and options for all palates.

They serve very fresh fish and veggies, a great steak, and pizzas. There are also vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options, and even a bar for you to grab a cocktail while watching the sunset. The cutest detail, though? Custom House is Avila Beach’s most pet-friendly restaurant, they even have a doggie menu!

Address: 404 Front Street
Opening Hours: Daily from 11 AM to 9 PM


Mersea’s is the famous Avila Beach’s restaurant on the pier, locally renowned for its high-quality ingredients, great service, and unbeatable views over the bay.

Located at the end of the Harford pier, they offer unpretentious but fantastic fresh food and quick service. Try their clam chowder, the fresh oysters, or the fish and shrimp tacos, coupled with a drink from the bar. They also have some of the fairest prices for quality in the area!

One of the most sought-after places to have dinner in Avila Beach, there is indoor sitting, but nothing beats sitting outside on the deck and watching a marine life spectacle while you eat. You may spot seals, otters, sea lions, pelicans, seagulls, or even whales if you’re lucky. 

Address: 3985 Avila Beach Drive
Opening Hours: Daily from 11 AM to 8PM

Hula Hut & Doc Burnstein’s Ice Cream

This super friendly cafe is one the best places to have breakfast in Avila Beach, or to stop for that much-needed afternoon coffee. Hula Hut specializes in ice creams, cakes, and gifts, so it’s a great spot not only for those with a serious sweet tooth, but also to get a souvenir for your loved ones back home.

They offer smoothies, sandwiches, great bacon, breakfast burritos, and many cakes and pastries, like brownies, lemon cake, and banana muffins. Hula Hut is also a great place to grab a sandwich to take to the beach and eat on a blanket while watching the ocean, although they are on located on the promenade, so you can easily sit outdoors and enjoy the view of the water.

Hula Hut teamed up with Doc Burnstein’s -in what looks like a blissful combination- to offer handcrafted, super-premium ice cream, which is kind of famous in California, and they’ll let you sample different flavors before picking your favorite! 

Address: 380 Front Street
Opening Hours: Daily from 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM in the summer, and from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM in the winter

Fat Cats

There are really no cats at the Fat Cats Café at Avila Beach. The name came from a big cat that adopted the restaurant during construction and stayed on for some time. 

Fat Cats has been a local favorite since 1985, and named one of the 5 can’t-miss eateries on the Pacific Coast Highway by USA Today Travels. That should tell you something!

This rustic and charming restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, which makes it a great option throughout the day. They also have an outdoor patio that is heated when it’s cold, so you can enjoy the ocean views any time of year.

Having built a reputation for its ocean views and great service, Fat Cats has an extensive menu with options for all palates and diets, but they stand out for having some of the best seafood in Avila Beach (and around), raved out over and over again. If you’re a seafood lover, you will want to come back here! 

Address: 3920 Avila Beach Drive
Opening Hours: Daily from 7:30 AM to 8:00 PM

Ocean Grill

Sitting right by the ocean, Ocean Grill at Avila Beach is a more contemporary spot offering a wide selection of foods, including wood-fired pizzas, seafood & American entrees.

The menu is quite varied, with many options of starters, salads, and flatbreads. Their clam chowder is particularly good and praised! Of course, they also offer vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options in all courses, and, although there’s no separate bar, they have a huge selection of wines and 8 different tap beers.

Located steps away from the water, they feature a dog-friendly outdoor covered patio with heating for cold days, so you can enjoy the fresh air all year round!

Address: 268 Front Street
Opening Hours: Mon-Thu from 4 PM to 8:30 PM; Fri-Sun from 2:30 PM to 8:30 PM

Blue Moon Over Avila

With this dreamy and romantic name, Blue Moon Over Avila is one of the most elegant Avila restaurants. This is as close to a French Bistro as you can get in this part of the U.S., and the European influences can be clearly seen, felt, and tasted.

At Blue Moon, the emphasis is on seasonal, high-quality ingredients, such as very fresh, locally sourced produce, fresh seafood, and gourmet imported products. They have a rotating menu, and serve small plates, entreés, and desserts, all accompanied by an excellent selection of boutique wines and beers. Definitely some of the finest Avila Beach dining!

They offer both indoor seating and an outdoor patio overlooking the bay, great to relax and enjoy an evening with your significant other in an elegant and stylish setting. In pure European style, Blue Moon Over Avila is best enjoyed at a slow pace, taking your time to savor every single bite.

Address: 460 Front Street
Opening Hours: Daily from 11:30 AM to 8:30 PM


Ready for a detox from all that seafood and fried food? It’s time to pay a visit to Kravabowl, arguably the healthiest place to eat in Avila Beach, and no doubt the best spot for some vegan breakfast goodness.

These colorful, delicious, and very Instagrammable fruit and granola bowls are hands down the best in town. Healthy and good for the soul!

Their Acaí bowl is the star, but all the bowls are mouth-watering and include excellent fresh fruit and healthy add-ons. Think pitayas, mango, bananas, blueberries, strawberries, coconut, cacao nibs, granola, honey, Greek yogurt, and all the healthy goodies you can think of. If you don’t fancy any of the pre-made combinations, you can build your own bowl!

Of course, they also offer coffee, cold press juices, smoothies, coconut water, and even kombucha for the healthiest among the healthy. They’re located inside the Avila Market.

Address: 354 Front Street (inside the Avila Market)
Opening Hours: Daily from 8 AM to 5 PM

Avila Market Restaurant & Mercantile

The best of Avila Beach fast food in one place! The Avila Market & Mercantile gathers a bit of everything and puts it under the same roof to make life easier for you. With a casual and relaxed style, this market has one of the most diverse menus in town.

And don’t be deceived, fast doesn’t mean unhealthy here. This is a great place for vegetarians and vegans too. The wide selection of foods includes sandwiches, wraps, burgers, salads, poke bowls, tacos, many breakfast options, granola bowls, and the most hipster avocado toast you can think of. 

Seafood is also present, with Fish & Chips, calamari, shrimp, and award-winning clam chowder. The Market is a great spot to stop by and pick a little something for a beach picnic, and always a good idea to have both dinner and lunch in Avila Beach.

Address: 354 Front Street
Opening Hours: Daily from 8 AM to 9 PM

As you can see, small doesn’t mean limited, and Avila Beach delivers in the food department too, making it an even more enticing destination in this part of California. Take your pick between the many options of bars and restaurants, and simply enjoy the views over the Pacific in pure Californian style.

Kathy Trevino

Monday 31st of July 2023

My favorite place go every year 4 the last 21years

Stefania Guglielmi

Tuesday 1st of August 2023

Amazing! Which one is your favorite restaurant?