San Diego County is larger than Rhode Island and Delaware. Combined. As much as we love downtown San Diego and its vast collection of meeting venues and offsite activities, the county has many other meeting-friendly properties and activities that should not be overlooked.

There is a fresh meeting push coming from Carlsbad, 35 miles north of downtown San Diego. Carlsbad is best known as home of Legoland California Resort and epicenter of the wellness movement. But that’s just two key attractions in Carlsbad, which also boasts a stunning oceanfront location, great outdoor opportunities and key meeting resorts.

We’d like to provide a little northern exposure for San Diego County with five reasons to meet in Carlsbad:

1. Wellness has been part of the city’s heritage for 130 years and Carlsbad celebrates this connection with Wellness Month in May. Mineral springs were first tapped in 1882, helping to create an acclaimed spa destination. One of the wellness leaders is Omni La Costa Resort & Spa, which features a 43,000-square-foot spa. Omni is home to the Chopra Center for Well Being, a campus founded by Dr. Deepak Chopra that features cutting-edge, physician-caliber treatments. The city of Carlsbad even offers free yoga in Carlsbad Village.

“According to the American Psychological Association, 75 percent of adults reported experiencing moderate to high levels of stress in the past month and nearly half reported that their stress has increased in the past year,” says Sam Ross, executive director of Visit Carlsbad. “Carlsbad offers the ultimate solutions to distress, relax, recharge and reconnect in an idyllic Sothern California setting.”

2. Legoland California Resort introduced a new Star Wars model in March. It spans eight feet across and includes Lego models of stormtroopers, fighter pilots and a star ship. This summer, the theme park will debut Lego Friends Heartlake City based on a series of toys that focuses on the lives of five girls.

3. Stellar resorts provide exquisite meeting and event space and serve as another reason to meet in Carlsbad. Among the properties with event space are Hilton Carlsbad Oceanfront Resort & Spa (25,000 sq. ft. of indoor and outdoor space), Park Hyatt Aviara Resort (78,000 sq. ft. of indoor and outdoor space) and Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa (17,481 sq. ft. indoors).

4. Carlsbad is rich with outdoor activities, especially its Pacific Ocean coastline. There are also opportunities to spot rare birds around the shores of Batiquitos Lagoon, paddle Agua Hedionda Lagoon or hike the Hosp Grove Trail, offering views of the Buena Vista Lagoon and the ocean.

5. Highway 78 that cuts across northern San Diego County is fondly referred to as “Hops Highway.” While San Diego is considered “America’s Capital of Craft,” as in craft-brewed beer, Carlsbad is one of the key cities in the county-wide brew tour that includes nearly 200 pubs and restaurants. Pizza Port Brewing Company, with five locations including two in downtown Carlsbad, is credited with helping to spearhead San Diego’s craft brewing industry.

So cheers to San Diego and its northern reaches. There are lots of reasons to meet in Carlsbad.