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Cabrillo National Monument, San Diego

Categories: Monuments, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.7/5 based on 3,000+ reviews on the web
Cabrillo National Monument commemorates the landing of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo’s expedition to San Diego Bay in 1524. It was the first time that a European expedition set foot on what became the west coast of the United States. You can learn about the age of exploration and Cabrillo at the park’s visitor center. From here, it is a short walk to the Old Point Loma Lighthouse, restored to its 1880's appearance and now operating as a museum. The park also encompasses several former military installations, which you can see while exploring the area. Take time to appreciate the monument’s superb views of the harbor, city skyline, and Pacific Ocean. If it is a clear day, you might even see the Coronado Islands. Use our San Diego itinerary builder to add Cabrillo National Monument and other attractions to your San Diego vacation plans.
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  • Along with people from all over the world, just watching the boats and ships, navy planes and helicopters, luxury liners and carriers going past the Cabrillo Monument is a treat. Fantastic view of the...  read more »
  • Christopher Columbus may have been first to discover America, but Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo got the best view 50 years later. Cabrillo's story is fascinating though incomplete. While visiting this Natio...  read more »
  • This is well worth the trip. It is easily accessed from San Diego and offers the best views of the Bay, Coronado, and the City. There is a paved walking trail along the coast. The visitor's center is ...  read more »
  • Very informative. I love the museum. The people here are great and they help you out a lot. There is a parking fee $10. Considering that Cabrillo was the first European to ever touch American soil, This place really makes you feel like it was the Gateway into the New World. So much history here.
  • This is one of the first spots I bring visitors to San Diego. On a clear day, it provides a great view of the entire city and Coronado. The lighthouse is a fun spot to visit, and on the ocean side, you can watch for whales or drive down to the shore and go tidepooling. There is one short trail (less than a mile?) down the hill on the bay side with nice views.
  • Amazing place to visit! The view is wonderful and the museums are nice, but a bit small. Weather in the summer is nice and fresh and it was not over crowded on Sunday. The parking is nice and secure and they accept debit card.
  • The Cabrillo National Park is a truly amazing history and activity center. It has the visitor center where you learn all about Cabrillo and how he discovered San Diego along with the challenges that he faced. There is, of course, the monument. It captures every detail about Cabrillo and really commemorates what he did for San Diego. On a clear day, you can see miles and miles of the ocean There is also a quaint little lighthouse that has a great view of the ocean behind it. A perfect picture moment for anyone. The tide pools are remarkable. There are countless sea animals in there that you can touch and look at. The Cabrillo National Monument is a great family activity if you are looking for some history of San Diego. When you tell the story of Cabrillo, you tell the story of Southern California.
  • It is stunning view of the Pacific Ocean and SD bay! It is a natural paradise you see blue sky and blue waves meet and kiss. It is a graceful exhibit of local historic navigation work. Unlike other attractions of SD where you must encounter large crowds of tourists, this place is pleasantly quiet and relaxing. Easy access to hike trail and tide pool. I am happy to get annual pass at $20 and would definitely go back there for many enjoyable late afternoons. My summer lover is called Cabrillo!
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