Cabrillo National Monument

1800 Cabrillo Memorial Dr
San Diego CA 92152
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Opening Hours

  • Mon: 9am-5pm
  • Tue: 9am-5pm
  • Wed: 9am-5pm
  • Thu: 9am-5pm
  • Fri: 9am-5pm
  • Sat: 9am-5pm
  • Sun: 9am-5pm


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Cabrillo National Monument is located at the southern tip of the Point Loma peninsula in San Diego, California. Stunning vistas of the San Diego Bay and Pacific Ocean can be seen from the monument. It honors Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, discoverer of San Diego Bay, and tells the story of the 16th century European expedition that set foot on what later became the West Coast of the United States. There's plenty to do for all types of travelers: history buffs will love the exhibit that tells the story of military history at Point Loma, fitness enthusiasts can hike along the Bayside Trail and kids can earn a Junior Ranger badge.

Must see and must do at Cabrillo National Monument

  • Tidepooling: During the winter months visit these unique ecosystems. In them you might see flowery anemones, elusive octopi, spongy deadman's fingers, and a myriad of other creatures. The tidepools are great fun for kids of all ages.
  • Hiking: The two-mile Bayside Trails offers breathtaking views of the of San Diego Bay, and the city beyond with plenty of areas to rest and enjoy the scenery.
  • Whale Watching: Observe the Pacific Gray Whale pass by the western overlooks of Cabrillo National.

Best and worst time to go to Cabrillo National Monument
The best time to visit the monument is on weekdays. The park is really busy and crowded on weekends.

Admission to Cabrillo National Monument
Cabrillo National Monument is open every day of the year -- except on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day -- from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Bayside Trail closes at 4:00 p.m. and the tidepools at 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 per vehicle or $3 per person that walks-in.

Wildlife at Cabrillo National Monument
The Coastal Sage Scrub (along the Bayside Trail) is home to hundreds of different native plants and animals. Many local birds, such as the California Quail, American Kestrel, and Morning Doves might be seen along the trail. Cottontail rabbits, ground squirrels, lizards, snakes, and foxes have been spotted along the trail as well. During the summer, please keep an eye out for rattlesnakes.

Insider tip for visitors to Cabrillo National Monument
Your entrance receipt is good not only for the day you visit, but also for the following six days.

Author's bio: Rose Wheeler has lived in San Diego for over nine years. She's been published in "La Jolla Patch," "Global Post" and Yahoo. Her blog regularly features great local finds and trending style tips.