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!

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1 Father Junipero Serra Trail
San Diego, CA 92119-1008

Phone: (619) 668-3281
32.820184, -117.056820

Open Daily: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Closed: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Years Day

Dog-Friendly: No    Kid-Friendly: Yes


Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor's Center is a great stop-off before heading into the park.

Here you can learn about the Kumeyaay people and further educate yourself about their culture, beliefs and traditions.  There is also a 94-seat theater that runs 4 educational shows about the park and its history daily. There is a collection of taxidermied animals of some of the creatures that live in this area, an art gallery, artifacts found in the area and more. I imagine the exhibits change occasionally giving reasons for revisits.

While you're in the area, make sure to visit the Old Mission Dam nearby!



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2 Reviews

Rating 0
Overall Rating 0
Difficulty Finding 0

2 Reviews


  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Heres better instructions – how to get there Crystal Cave/Mine Santee- there’s a bunch of nice gems laying around on the ground if you pick around carefully.

    There’s Big Rock Park in Santee. You can google it if you want to. Running next to it is Mesa Road. It isn’t a long walk up Mesa Road, past the last gate not far at all.

    You’ll see a rock structure on the right hand side. When there’s been rain there’s a nice waterfall, and there usually is always a pond there and wetness, and the plants are green in that spot. It is distinctive, it is the first significant rock structure.

    You cross the rocks over the seasonal waterfall. Immediately on the other side you’ll see a trail that is lately enclosed above by bushes/chapparel. Follow it up a little bit, not far, and you’ll hit the area where the mine/mines are, including the one I photographed. The gemstone boulder is in the bushes around there too.

    That whole part of the hill is tailings actually, you’ll see. You’ll see bits of black tourmaline scattered everywhere in the tailing piles, prolific. If you google map it and look, the bare spot just beyond the rock structure is where the mine is, that bare spot on the current google map 12/27/2013 is tailings that no plants grow on right next to the mine entrance.

    Just zoom in close up on Mesa Road in google maps and you’ll be able to see the last gate just beyond the last drive way, just beyond that the grey rock structure and green plants, and the bare scars on the hill beyond it that are old mine tailings.

    Let me know when you find it. 🙂

    goldtrout 9 days ago

    January 5, 2014

  • Admin
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    I hope to explore this soon! Thank you!

    January 10, 2014

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Mission Trails Regional Park, 1 Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Diego, CA 92119, USA


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