North County and Around

We’ve compiled the best of the best in North County and Around - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Eagle Mining Company

    Mine

    Five blocks east of the center of Julian you can take an hour-long tour of an authentic family-owned gold mine from 1870. Displays along the...Read More

  • 2. Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch

    Garden/Arboretum

    The largest bulb-production farm in Southern California has hillsides abloom here each spring, when thousands of Giant Tecolote ranunculus produce...Read More

  • 3. LEGOLAND California Resort

    Amusement Park/Water Park

    The centerpiece of a development that includes resort hotels, a designer discount shopping mall, an aquarium, and a water park, LEGOLAND has...Read More

  • 4. Old Mission San Luis Rey

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Known as the King of the Missions, the 18th, the largest, and the most prosperous of California's missions was built in 1798 by Franciscan friars...Read More

  • 5. San Diego Zoo Safari Park

    Zoo/Aquarium

    A branch of the San Diego Zoo, 35 miles to the north, the 1,800-acre preserve in the San Pasqual Valley is designed to protect endangered species...Read More

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  • 6. California Center for the Arts

    Museum/Gallery

    An entertainment complex with two theaters, an art museum, and a conference center, the center presents operas, musicals, plays, dance performances...Read More

  • 7. California Wolf Center

    Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge

    This center, just outside Julian, is one of the few places in North America where you can get an up-close view of the gray wolves that once...Read More

  • 8. Daley Ranch

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    A 3,058-acre conservation area and historic ranch site is laced with more than 20 miles of multipurpose trails for hikers, mountain bikers,...Read More

  • 9. Del Mar Beach

    Beach–Sight

    This famously clean 2-mile-long beach is the perfect place for long barefoot walks and sunbathing due to its extremely fine, soft sand and lack...Read More

  • 10. Del Mar Fairgrounds

    Fairground

    The Spanish Mission–style fairground is the home of the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club ( www.dmtc.com ). Crooner Bing Crosby and his Hollywood buddies...Read More

  • 11. Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary

    Zoo/Aquarium

    This small exotic-bird aviary adjacent to the Del Mar Fairgrounds houses a collection of parrots and other exotic birds—a guaranteed child pleaser. ...Read More

  • 12. Julian Pioneer Museum

    Museum/Gallery

    When the gold mines in Julian played out, the mobs of gold miners who had invaded it left, leaving behind discarded mining tools and empty houses...Read More

  • 13. Milagro

    Winery/Brewery/Distillery

    For quality wine and an enjoyable wine-tasting experience, Milagro leads the long list of wineries in Ramona. Overseeing production is Hugo...Read More

  • 14. Mission San Antonio de Pala

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    A living remnant of the mission era, built in 1816, this mission still ministers to the Native American community, making it the only original...Read More

  • 15. Moonlight State Beach

    Beach–Sight

    Its large parking areas, many facilities, and proximity to the quaint coastal town of Encinitas make this beach tucked into a break in the cliffs...Read More

  • 16. Museum of Making Music

    Museum/Gallery

    Take an interactive journey through 100 years of popular music with displays of more than 500 vintage instruments and samples of memorable tunes...Read More

  • 17. Observer's Inn

    Observatory/Planetarium

    One of the best ways to see Julian's star-filled summer sky is by taking a sky-tour at Mike and Caroline Leigh's observatory, with research...Read More

  • 18. Palomar Mountain State Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    One of the few areas in Southern California with a Sierra-like atmosphere, the park is carpeted with a forest of pines, cedars, western dogwood...Read More

  • 19. Queen Califia's Magical Circle

    Public Art (Mural/Sculpture/Statue)

    The last work by sculptor Niki de Saint Phalle (1930–2002), this sculpture garden designed for entertaining children consists of nine totemic...Read More

  • 20. San Diego Botanic Gardens

    Garden/Arboretum

    More than 4,000 rare, exotic, and endangered plants are on display on 37 landscaped acres. Displays include plants from Central America, Africa...Read More

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