We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Palomar Mountain State Park

State Park Road, Escondido, CA
+1 760-742-3462
Review Highlights
Peaceful and very cool

Drove out for day while staying in Carlsbad. Interesting drive up mountain to park, switchbacks as... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
West Palm Beach, Florida
via mobile
A Pleasant Park at the top of the mountain.

We spent a leisurely afternoon at this small park that sits at about 5,200 ft. in elevation. We... read more

Reviewed 15 November 2017
Dale W
Clayton, California
Read all 95 reviews
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
This park's Sierra-Nevada like atmosphere is unique in Southern California.
  • Excellent52%
  • Very good35%
  • Average9%
  • Poor4%
  • Terrible0%
Travellers talk about
“hiking trails” (8 reviews)
“san diego” (11 reviews)
“nice trails” (2 reviews)
Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 05:00 - 22:00
State Park Road, Escondido, CA
+1 760-742-3462
Write a ReviewReviews (95)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
  • More languages

1 - 10 of 91 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Drove out for day while staying in Carlsbad. Interesting drive up mountain to park, switchbacks as you climb from 2000 to 5000 feet. I’m from zero in Florida, so very exciting. The vegetation changes with elevation, so pay attention. No one at entrance when I...More

Thank Jak-cra
Reviewed 15 November 2017

We spent a leisurely afternoon at this small park that sits at about 5,200 ft. in elevation. We enjoyed a 3-mile loop hike on a trail that gently descended and rose back up to arrive at a fire lookout station. If it's not crowded, it's...More

1  Thank Dale W
Reviewed 13 November 2017

The views from the ridges, road and the Historic Boucher Fire Lookout are outstanding.There are a handful of short hikes over easy terrain for the whole family. (Most viewpoints are accessible by car so everyone can get a chance to see forever, or at least...More

Thank onthelooselive
Reviewed 24 October 2017 via mobile

Palomar is beautiful all year long but, Fall is the best time to visit. This year we decided to go during their apple festival and I'm so glad we did! Palomar's apple festival was small enough to be thoroughly enjoyed by all. Best of all,...More

1  Thank Kelli R
Reviewed 21 September 2017

My visit was a very pleasant surprise. I had not idea that a nice mountain camping experience was so close to home. The hiking trails offer outstanding vistas along the way and the campsites are very nice, considering the reasonable prices the state park system...More

Thank Dennis C
Reviewed 20 August 2017

This is a review for the Palomar State Park Campsite. Each campsite had lots of space, clean bathrooms and showers and drinking water. The only bad thing was the mosquitos. Do not forget mosquito repellent!

2  Thank Mike H
Reviewed 19 August 2017

Enjoyed the ride as much as the observatory visitors center. We had one person in a wheelchair and did not experience the P200 dome that houses the Hale telescope. The visitors center is wheelchair accessible and has many interesting exhibits and short films - well...More

1  Thank JerseyJosie
Reviewed 6 August 2017 via mobile

There is an alternate route to Palomar Mountain that is just as gorgeous, if not more stunning, than the traditional drive. " Nate Harrison grade" also known as the "highway to the stars," . The winding dirt road is filled with views that are hard...More

1  Thank adam873
Reviewed 4 July 2017

Forgot how much we love this place! Palomar mountain is easily accessible off of I -15 and is over 6,000 feet. Probably best known for the observatory, the state park is something that you should not miss if you like the outdoors. The drive there...More

Thank jenLeCreate
Reviewed 10 June 2017

The title sums it up!! Very family friendly...but I'm past that point in my life. I know, I know...what can I expect so close to civilization!? Came mid-week, had one quiet day. Stayed in site 16. Stairs up or down to most campsites. Fortunately no...More

1  Thank Deborah A
Nearby HotelsSee all 16 hotels in Escondido
Harrah's Resort Southern California
8,077 reviews
8.62 km away
Valley View Casino Hotel
110 reviews
13.91 km away
Pala Casino Resort and Spa
394 reviews
16.76 km away
Pechanga Resort and Casino
612 reviews
23.11 km away
Nearby Restaurants
Mother's Kitchen
29 reviews
4.13 km away
Jilberto's Taco Shop
18 reviews
6.73 km away
County Line Wood Fire Grill
36 reviews
11.90 km away
Stage Coach Inn
19 reviews
13.14 km away
Nearby Attractions
Palomar Observatory
129 reviews
4.73 km away
La Jolla Zip Zoom
345 reviews
8.27 km away
Harrah's Resort Southern California
533 reviews
8.44 km away
Ricardo Breceda Gallery & Sculpture Garden
16 reviews
12.83 km away
Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Jessica J
5 April 2017|
Response from ricsandimas | Reviewed this property |
I didn't get a chance to go to the campsites; I stayed at the picnic area. I'm sure someone else will be able to help you. I definitely need to go back. Have a great stay!
17 July 2016|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from DebMurphy57 | Reviewed this property |
I'm not sure since we were just day visitors. You can call 760-742-3462 for park information.