If you are looking for a picture-perfect place to spend a day on your San Diego vacation, Heritage County Park is the place for you. With its beautiful landscapes and ample opportunities for recreation, the park is a favorite destination for both locals and visitors alike.
In this guide, we provide everything you need to know about Heritage County Park so that you can plan your trip accordingly.
Where Is the Heritage County Park?
The 7.8-acre urban park is located in the heart of historic Old Town San Diego, only a few blocks from the Whaley House museum and Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. You can find it at 2454 Heritage Park Row, San Diego, CA 92110.
The park is easily accessible by car. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and admission is free for all visitors.
History of the Heritage County Park
The County of San Diego purchased the property on which the Heritage County Park was constructed in 1970, fearing that rapid growth in Downtown San Diego would threaten its beautiful Victorian structures.
The county collaborated with the Save Our Heritage Organization (SOHO) to recreate six endangered 1880’s-style Victorian houses and San Diego’s first synagogue, built by Congregation Beth Israel in 1889.
Heritage County Park was created to preserve the city’s cultural and natural resources and to serve as a monument to commemorate the transition from the Spanish-Mexican-early American periods to the modern City of San Diego. Today, the park is still a popular spot for those who want to learn about San Diego’s past, take cool pictures or enjoy a day in the great outdoors.
Things to Do at the Heritage County Park
Although the park doesn’t have many amenities, you can still enjoy your time there. Here are some ideas for making the most of your visit to Heritage County Park:
- Go for a walk.
- Check out the six Victorian houses, including the Burton House, Senlis Cottage, Sherman-Gilbert House, Bushyhead House, Christian House, and McConaughy House.
- Sit quietly on the lawned areas and meditate.
- Tour the inside of the Senlis Cottage and Temple Beth Israel.
- Take some beautiful pictures.
- Host your picnic, birthday tea party, wedding, or bar mitzvah.
Check out the hiking trail behind the Victorian houses leading to a bench at the top of a hill to enjoy picturesque views.
When Is the Best Time to Visit?
The best time to visit Heritage County Park is in the spring or fall when the weather is warm and lovely. However, the park is open year-round, so you can enjoy it no matter when you visit.
Be sure to bring sunscreen, hats, water, and snacks, as there are no food vendors at Heritage County Park. You should also come with comfortable shoes as you may be walking a lot while exploring and playing in the park.
Things to Do Nearby
Heritage County Park is located near Old Town, allowing visitors to spend time in the park and explore historic Old Town afterward. You can also drive to the San Diego Zoo, USS Midway Museum, and San Diego Museum of Art to do some sightseeing.
There are a lot of restaurants within walking distance of Heritage County Park if you need to take a break from exploring to refuel.
Here are some top restaurants we recommend:
- Old Town Tequila Factory Restaurant & Cantina
- Hungry’s Kitchen & Tap
- Cafe Coyote
- Jack & Giulio’s Italian Restaurant
- Casa de Reyes
You’ll want to go to the Mormon Battalion Historic SIte just below the park if you’d like to learn about the history of the Mormon Battalion and their contribution to the city of San Diego. Or you can join a ghost-themed walking tour at the Whaley House Museum to learn about the spooky history of the Whaley family and walk around the haunted mansion.
The best places to do some shopping after spending time at the park include the Old Town Esplanade Shopping Center, Old Town Market, and Seaport Village.
Heritage County Park is the perfect place to spend a day in San Diego. You can explore the beautiful Victorian-style homes, go for a hike, or just relax and take in the views. There’s just so much to do that it’ll be impossible not to have a fantastic time.
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