Escondido is the heart of northern San Diego… rich in history and culture. We have one of the few remaining original downtown historic districts complete with vintage buildings filled with eclectic shops, galleries, parks, and amazing restaurants... both iconic locals' eateries and new culinary destinations making headlines.
A Brief History... for more info, go to the Escondido History Center
The location of Escondido was first identified and discovered by Juan Bautista de Anza, a Spanish explorer, in 1776. Later, the area became part of the Rancho Rincon del Diablo (the devil's corner) land grant bestowed to Juan Bautista Alvarado in 1843 by Mexican Governor Manuel Micheltoren. Some believe designation of "the devil's corner" came about because of the belief of early missionaries that land not held by the church, belonged to the devil.
In 1886, construction of the 100-room Escondido Hotel on the site of today's downtown Palomar Medical Center and in 1887 the rail line from Oceanside to Escondido was started. In 1888 the City of Escondido was incorporated.
Escondido grew into a thriving commercial city know for its extensive agriculture, including vineyards, citrus growing and shipping, and an adobe brick factory. To celebrate the grape harvest every September, the Grape Day festival began in 1908 and continues today. In 1779, Franciscan missionaries under the direction of the Spanish Father Junípero Serra planted California's first sustained vineyard at Mission San Diego de Alcalá. The first commercial winery in San Diego County was the Vineyard Winery, started in 1850 just east in Valley Center.
Our gateway location and convenient Transit Center keep Escondido on the top of the lists for people looking for great places to live with easy access to all of Southern California.
One of the greatest ongoing traditions in San Diego County, Cruisin’ Grand Escondido™ runs for six spectacular months. This FREE EVENT brings more than 5000 visitors and classic car enthusiasts to historic downtown Escondido every Friday Night. Come check out the 500+ cars lining the streets of historic downtown Escondido.
Not only for classic car enthusiasts… everyone enjoys meeting up with friends, bringing the family out and strolling along Grand Avenue, stopping in for a bite at one of our many restaurants and people-watching on those warm summer nights.