Hello everyone! This is a friendly reminder that any of these fun places we may visit, we are a guest at. Please treat both businesses and trails with the utmost respect. We here at Hidden San Diego follow the 'Leave no Trace' mantra, meaning whatever you bring with you comes back with you. If you see trash on a trail, please do your part to help remove it. Remember, we are not picking up trash from another person but instead cleaning up for Mother Nature. Happy adventures!

Share me!

2410 San Diego Ave.
San Diego, CA 92110

Phone: (619) 220-5422
32.751616, -117.193292

Dog-Friendly: Yes    Kid-Friendly: Yes



**Make sure to check out our list of Hidden Spots in Old Town for the ultimate day trip!**

About El Campo Santo Cemetery

If you want to really get a glimpse into the past, here is a good place to stop by. El Campo Santo Cemetery began its story in 1849. There are 477 bodies buried here and unfortunately not all of them retain their tomb. Take a look at the sidewalk and street directly outside for grave markers.

Yep, some of the graves are literally in the street! If that isn’t going to upset the spirits here, how about injustice and grave robbers!

During the falling of the Old Town period, the cemetery was abandoned and its brick chapel destroyed by fire. Just two years after the last body was buried here, a streetcar line was literally built through the graveyard, hence the reason for removing some of the tombstones.

While you’re in the area, make sure to check out the Whaley House nearby!

After repeated petitions to acknowledge the bodies that were buried beneath the street and sidewalk, white crosses were painted in their place.

This is sadly not the only cemetery in San Diego to be disrespected by the city.  Pioneer Park in Mission Hills still has all the bodies buried below the park with only a row of tombs at the very end. Meadowlark Memorial Pioneer Cemetery had an entire intersection built over it!

el campo santo cemetery historic vintage photo



The most widely seen apparitions in El Campo Santo cemetery are an Indian or Hispanic man in 19th century clothing. There is also a woman also dressed in period clothes. The man is said to float above the ground. Other paranormal reports have said that cars which are parked upon the graves will sometimes have their alarms go off, even though no one is in sight of the vehicle.

Make sure to check out the sidewalk and street immediately in front of the cemetery.  Some of the graves are buried here as well!  You can spot them from the grave markers:

become a member el campo santo cemetery

They do a stunning display every year here for Old Town’s Dia de los Muertos celebration:

Share me!

Subscribe to our E-mail Newsletter


6 Reviews

Rating 0
Overall Rating 0
Difficulty Finding 0

6 Reviews


  • Pewdiepie
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    This is the same tunnel faze rug went to by the way subscribe to pewdiepie my YouTube

    April 18, 2017

  • B. Winters
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Any chance ANYONE has info on who might be buried there?

    Looking for great-grandfather Sylvestre de la Portilla (Portillo)–Original grantee of

    Rancho Valle de San Jose near Mission San Luis Rey

    Any info would be greatly appreciated !!

    April 30, 2017

  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Why doesnt the city take better care of the site?

    August 2, 2017

  • donna
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Who would have a list of the ‘buried”, that would include where there is just a marker in the

    street—-I have a name/names if I would find out who has a ‘master list’, thanks donna

    November 19, 2017

  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Who answers these comments?

    October 8, 2019

  • Sharon Mikowski
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    are the ghosts more active in daytime, or when it’s dark?

    July 3, 2023

Write a Review