Best of 2001: Best Place In North County To Disappear For A Day

Prince of Peace Abbey
650 Benet Hill Road, Oceanside

The monks who follow the rule of St. Benedict have carved out a serene niche on their hilltop overlooking the San Luis Rey Valley. The charism of the Benedictine order is hospitality, so no one who seeks the sanctuary of the abbey is turned away. Mass in the beautiful main chapel is at 11:00 a.m. weekdays and 10:30 a.m. on Sunday. But you don't have to be a Catholic to appreciate the monastery's cement-block buildings, nor to bask in the shade of its bottlebrush trees and bougainvillea. Throughout the grounds the monks have left weathered chairs and tables in spots where the pilgrim can rest and contemplate. The bells calling the monks to morning, midday, afternoon, and evening prayers are the only measure of time.

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