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Palomar Mountain State Park

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Address: State Park Road, Escondido, CA
Phone Number: 760-742-3462
Website
Today
5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun 7:00 am - 9:00 pm
Mon - Fri 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Sat 6:00 am - 10:00 pm
Description: This park's Sierra-Nevada like atmosphere is unique in Southern California.

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 54 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 28
    Excellent
  • 17
    Very good
  • 5
    Average
  • 4
    Poor
  • 0
    Terrible
Like being in another state...only 1 hour from San Diego!

We visited back to back weeks to Palomar State Park and then the observatory. It was a wonderful drive up and we even hit fog or clouds on our last visit and it was in the 40's... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed May 28, 2015
Kevin B
,
San Diego, California
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54 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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English first
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
94 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2015

We visited back to back weeks to Palomar State Park and then the observatory. It was a wonderful drive up and we even hit fog or clouds on our last visit and it was in the 40's in early May...the air was clean and the people were sparse...perfect getaway from the San Diego rat race. We went with friends and... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Escondido, California
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2015

This area is an oasis in the middle of the rat race of Southern California.Please be advised that is very cool at the summit and sometimes there will be snow,in winter.The state park has magnificent old trees.There is still some evidence of a forest fire years ago,but a lot of undergrowth is new.The views are spectacular and birders will not... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Omaha
Level Contributor
103 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2015

Get out of the city and over the hills! 6000 feet in elevation gain from the valley below. Great views. Nice and cool at the top. Steep 7+% grade so if you are riding, start training.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Long Beach, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2015

Local but feels like a getaway. Lot's of traffic due to the snow From there we went onto Lake Henshaw specifically to go the Hideout Saloon but unfortunately it was closed. Oh well, next time. Luckily I was headed back to Rincon when everyone else was headed toward the snow...don't see that too much in San Diego!!!

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Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2014

There are lots of great little hiking trips to do at this 6000 foot elevation summit that makes you think as if you are not in San Diego anymore. From the highest observation point you can possibly see your house since you can see all the way from Riverside and Orange County to Mexico on a clear day. Bring binoculars... More 

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Eatontown, New Jersey
Level Contributor
127 reviews
65 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2014

I have been coming here since childhood. It is a beautiful mountain setting not far from both the Angeles-Orange County-San Bernardino metro and San Diego. Picnicking and overnight camping are available in season. It is one of the few places in San Diego county where snow falls and gets far more rain then most of sounthern California. Deer abound. Be... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Bradford, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
115 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2014

I just visited for a short diversion. Got in a run on some of the nice trails in the park. Plenty of parking, $8 use fee. If you go, visit the Boucher Fire Tower which is at the highest point in the park and affords great views.

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Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
23 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2014

We took a last minute trip to Palomar mountain and we were rewarded with the most amazing weekend. We stayed at the state park campsite. Even though we didn't have reservations, there were still two campsites available $30/night. We took the bike and hike site, and it was huge and private. Just a little trek from the car to the... More 

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New Braunfels, Texas
Level Contributor
95 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2014

This is a crazy drive to get up to this very beautiful park. Lovely hikes and beautiful scenery. Wonderful trees!

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014 via mobile

My family and I loved this place! Best hike ever! We went on a Tuesday. There were not many people. The drive up was gorgeous! There was a huge picnic area. We drove around the park and followed the signs to Doane Pond, parked the car, and took the Cedar Trail to Thunder Springs. My 5 year old went to... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2

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Additional Information about Palomar Mountain State Park

Address: State Park Road, Escondido, CA
Phone Number: 760-742-3462
Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Escondido
Open Hours:
Sunday 7:00 am - 9:00 pm
Monday 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Tuesday 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Wednesday 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Thursday 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Friday 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
Saturday 6:00 am - 10:00 pm

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Palomar Mountain State Park and other visitors
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The Villages, Florida, United States
6 months ago

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  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?