arrow-down arrow-left arrow-right arrow-up play-button plus tab-indicator dots close menu search facebook google-plus instagram pinterest rss twitter youtube rss-two heart Check FeaturedBadge linkedin minus apps placeholder linkedin
Welcome to

East County

San Diego's wild and wonderful backyard

San Diego's East County wilderness is one of the most diverse areas in the county featuring rolling hills, majestic mountains, sparkling lakes, deep canyons and desert landscapes plus Indian casino gaming. 

Photo By Lou Mora

Get outside and discover your wild side

In sharp contrast to San Diego's beaches to the west, the rolling hills, majestic mountains, sparkling lakes and deep canyons make east county one of the most diverse areas in San Diego County to explore. The area offers hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, fishing and camping in the vast and beautiful wilderness. Spend an afternoon hiking Cowles Mountain, mountain biking through Mission Trails Regional Park, strolling along Lake Murray or fishing on El Capitan Reservoir. For flower lovers, don’t miss the spring wildflower bloom in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, where a blanket of color covers the desert floor.  

In addition to outdoor adventures, East San Diego County boasts plenty of entertainment. Sizzling Las Vegas-style Native American casinos, luxurious resorts tucked right into the rugged landscape, challenging golf courses built around natural obstacles, historic sites and highways, and annual festivals and rodeos can be enjoyed, all within the expansive landscape of this California wilderness country.

A favorite day trip in East San Diego is to the historic mining town of Julian. Set against the backdrop of the Cuyamaca Mountains and countless apple orchards, this friendly, walk-back-in-time town is as famous for its apple pie as it is for its collection of gold mines (several offer tours geared toward children). Julian has a variety of restaurants, bed & breakfast hideaways, antique stores, art galleries, nearby hiking and nature walks, along with the California Wolf Center for conservation.

Find a place to stay

Book online or call 1-800-350-6205 to speak with a local expert

Getting to East County

East County is an expansive region, encompassing more than three quarters of San Diego County. The area can be accessed by heading east on Interstate 8, and California highways 94 and 52, 78 and 76. If you have a few hours, head up to the mountains and into the desert - Julian and Borrego Springs can be accessed from Highways 78 (off Interstate 15) and 79 (off Interstate 8). A bit closer to the city center, Lemon Grove, La Mesa, El Cajon and Santee can be reached via the Orange or Green lines of the San Diego Trolley.

Discover East County

What's Hot|
What's On|

San Diego Casinos

Try your had with lady luck at one of the many Indian Las Vegas style gaming casinos. 

Discover

Wine Tasting in Ramona Valley

Eight great Ramona Valley wineries that are worth a try.  

 

Discover

Borrego Days Desert Festival

Oct 20 - Oct 22, 2017

Borrego Days Desert Festival is filled to the brim with inspiring art, entertainment, delicious food and drink, and so much more!

Discover

La Mesa's Holiday in the Village

Dec 9 - Dec 10, 2017

The Village is transformed into a Victorian Wonderland during La Mesa's Holiday in the Village with fire pits, caroling, and craft vendors to get everyone in the mood of the season!

Discover

HauntFest on Main

Oct 20, 2017

HauntFest on Main is an exciting family friendly event in Downtown El Cajon with a pumpkin patch, costume contest, kidz zone, rides, entertainment and more!

Discover

The Boulevard Boo! Parade

Oct 28, 2017

The Boulevard BOO! Parade, a family event, features a spellbinding parade with ghoulish floats, unique vintage cars, costumes characters, bands and more!

Discover

What's Hot

View All

San Diego Casinos

Discover

Wine Tasting in Ramona Valley

Discover

What's On

View All

Borrego Days Desert Festival

Oct 20 - Oct 22, 2017
Discover

La Mesa's Holiday in the Village

Dec 9 - Dec 10, 2017
Discover

HauntFest on Main

Oct 20, 2017
Discover

The Boulevard Boo! Parade

Oct 28, 2017
Discover

Deals just for you

Tours & Sightseeing

20% off any of our Mexico Tours

Five Star Tours & Charter Bus Company
Valid: Aug 21 - ongoing

Enjoy the best of Mexico when you visit San Diego. Five Star Tours is offering 20% off our Mexico Tours any time.

Group & Charter Transportation

5% off our motor coach charter services

Five Star Tours & Charter Bus Company
Valid: Aug 22 - ongoing

Receive 5% off our Motor Coach Charter Services 

Breweries

Celebrate Thanksgiving With $5 Off A Wine & Beer Train Tour

San Diego Beer, Wine & Spirits Tours
Valid: Oct 20 - Nov 30, 2017

Celebrate Thanksgiving with $5 off the San Diego Wine & Beer Train Tour! Enjoy ample tastes of fine local wines and gourmet food. Beer lovers can enjoy optional tastings at the brewery stop!...

Related Articles and Features

Explore theNeighborhood

Areas of Interest

Where to Stay

Stay in touch

Sign up to receive the latest news, events, and updates about San Diego. Our monthly and weekly newsletters will keep you informed about the latest and greatest happenings in the destination.

Sign Up

Visitor planning guide

For the ultimate guide to planning your San Diego vacation, view and download the San Diego Visitor Planning Guide, packed with useful information that will help you plan the perfect San Diego getaway.

Read More

Explore

Plan

Stay

Follow Us

Language:

English | Change Language

Select your country or region

ChinaGermanyGreat BritainJapanMexicoKoreaSwitzerlandBrazilFranceAustraliaCanada USA

Or use Google Translate

Afrikaans Albanian Arabic Belarusian Bulgarian Catalan Croatian Czech Danish Deutsch Español Estonian Filipino Finnish Francais Galician Greek Haitian-Creole Hebrew Hindi Hungarian Icelandic Indonesian Irish Italian Japanese Korean Latvian Lithuanian Macedonian Malay Maltese Nederlands Norwegian Persian Polish Portuguese Romanian Russian Serbian Slovak Slovenian Swahili Swedish Telugu Thai Turkish Ukranian Vietnamese Welsh Yiddish