Cultural heritage sites
San Diego Cultural Heritage Alliance

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Be sure to call or view the websites of museums you plan on visiting to verify current hours of operations.

Adobe Chapel
3950 Conde Street, San Diego, CA 92110 - Old Town
(619) 297-7511
Originally built as a home in 1850, the Adobe Chapel was later converted to a church in 1858 by Don Jose Aguirre. The Chapel was later bulldozed in the early 1930's for street realignment, and rebuilt in 1937 by the WPA. The Adobe Chapel includes much of the original interior artifacts such as the tabernacle, the marbleized finished altar and some woodwork including pews, doors and Jose Aguirre's tombstone, which is laid on the floor.

Alvarado House
Del Mar Fairgrounds
2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014 - Del Mar
(858) 755-1670

Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum
2040 North Santa Fe Avenue, Vista, CA 92083 - Vista
(760) 941-1791
A museum whose collections focus on the 1849 through the early 1960's era with exhibits that actively demonstrate farm equipment and tools from horse drawn through modern row crop.

Anza-Borrego Museum
200 Palm Canyon Drive, Borrego Springs, CA 92004 - Borrego Springs
(760) 767-4205
Part of the Pacific Crest Trail, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the largest state park in California. Five hundred miles of dirt roads, 12 wilderness areas and many miles of hiking trails provide visitors with an unparalleled opportunity to experience the wonders of the California Desert.

Barona Cultural Center & Museum
1095 Barona Road, Lakeside, CA 92040 - Lakeside
(619) 443-7003
The Barona Cultural Center & Museum is dedicated to preserving the Native American culture and history of San Diego, CA County. With more than 3,000 artifacts, listening alcoves, photographic displays, and archives, the museum's historic treasures unfold many fascinating and inspiring stories of the Kumeyaay/Diegueño experience.

Bonita Museum & Cultural Center
4355 Bonita Road, San Diego, CA 91902 - Bonita
(619) 267-5141
A small museum located in Bonita with many antique objects, including Native American relics and Proctor Valley's monster footprint, from Bonita's historical days.

California Surf Museum
312 Pier View Way, Oceanside, CA 92054 - Oceanside
(760) 721-6876
The California Surf Museum serves as an international repository and resource center on the lifestyle sport of surfing.

Casa del Rey Moro African Museum
2471 Congress Street, San Diego, CA 92110 - Old Town
(619) 220-0022 ·

Chula Vista Heritage Museum
360 3rd Avenue, Chula Vista, CA 91910 - Chula Vista
(619) 427-8092
The Chula Vista Heritage Museum focuses on exhibits about Chula Vista's past. Artifacts and photos chronicle the settlement and development of Chula Vista, including historic homes and buildings, daily life, community events, noted individuals, and the city's citrus and aircraft industry. Chapter of the Friends of the Chula Vista Library.

Coronado History Museum
1100 Orange Avenue, Coronado, CA 92118 - Coronado
(619) 435-7242
Its mission is to encourage and promote the appreciation, knowledge and understanding of Coronado's unique art, architecture, history and other historical resources through its museum and other educational activities.

Deer Park Winery & Auto Museum
29013 Champagne Blvd, Escondido, CA 92026 - Escondido
(760) 749-1666
The Auto Museum features hundreds of vehicles and Americana collections, and is the recipient of the Antique Automobile Club of America trophy for excellence. Renown collections include a world-famous collection of American convertible cars, vintage radios, TV, antique bicycles, appliances, cameras, tube television sets, neon dealership signs, classic gas pumps and gas stations, vintage vehicle garages, old oil collectibles, license plates, vintage toys and games, Coca Cola room of collectibles, Barbie doll room, soapbox derby cars, wagons, carriages, 1950s new car showroom, Oscars, Bobs Big Boy, office equipment, computers, telephones, phonographs, records, displays of Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, Patti Page, Disney, Lawrence Welk, even Brooke Shields (recipient of the first of Chrysler's return to convertible car production).

Del Mar Historical Society
225 9th Street, Del Mar, CA 92014 - Del Mar
The Del Mar Historical Society is an independent 501(c)(3), California Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation founded in 1985, striving to fulfill its long-time mission to discover, record, collect, preserve, perpetuate, and display for public benefit the historical facts, artifacts, properties, and other material concerning the history of the village of Del Mar.

Ensenada Regional History Museum
Av. Gastelum near Paseo Calle Primera, Ensenada - Mexico

Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum
T-4203 Anderson Avenue, San Diego, CA 92145 - Miramar
(877) 359-8762
The Flying Leatherneck Historical Foundation exists to educate Marines and the public on the contribution Marine Corps aviation personnel make to San Diego, CA society. To that end, it supports the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar Command Museum and provides programs and activities for the benefit of both Marines and the public.

Gaslamp Museum at the William Heath Davis House
410 Island Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101 - Downtown San Diego
(619) 233-4692
The Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation serves as the curator of San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter - a 16 & 1/2 block district listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Grossmont High School Museum
100 Murray Drive, El Cajon, CA 91944 - El Cajon
(619) 668-6140
Open to the public the first Wednesday of each month and by appointment, the Museum welcomes alumni and the community to share their memories of Grossmont High, as we discover all that we have in common.

Heritage of the Americas Museum
12110 Cuyamaca College Drive W, El Cajon, CA 92019 - El Cajon
(619) 670-5194
The museum is an educational and cultural center featuring the prehistoric and historic art, culture, and natural history of the Americas. Artifacts and art serve as a documentation of life and civilization throughout the ages. In the words of the Museum's founder, Bernard Lueck, "To be lost and never found is to be nothing. Through the discovery of these antiquities, mankind is educated and inspired. We invite you to venture into our wonderful world of discovery."

Heritage Park Village Museum
220 Peyri Drive, Oceanside, CA 92057 - Oceanside
(760) 435-5215
The park was created as a 1976 Bicentennial project. Its main street is lined with many of Oceanside's original buildings.

Imperial Valley Desert Museum
11 Frontage Road, Ocotillo, CA 92259 - Ocotillo
(760) 358-7016

J A Cooley Museum (Frank the Trainman)
4233 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92103 - North Park
(619) 296-3112
The J.A. Cooley Museum is located in North Park, one of the older communities of San Diego. Here on display are featured 15 cars from 1886 through 1933 and 25 categories of antiques represented by collections such as model trains, cast iron toys, spittoons, tools, cuckoo clocks, license plates, World War I posters, phonographs, typewriters, and cameras.

Joshua Tree & Southern Railroad Museum
8901 Willow Lane, Joshua Tree, CA 92252 - Joshua Tree
(760) 366-8503
A Museum of antique railroad cars located in Joshua with a working 7 1/2 gauge track. All tours need to be reserved and setup beforehand.

Julian Pioneer Museum
2811 Washington Street, Julian, CA 92036 - Julian
(760) 765-0227
The Julian Pioneer Museum houses an amazing array of artifacts depicting the history of Julian and includes a Native American display. Historical artifacts throughout the museum provide a visual narrative of Julian history from 1869 to the turn of the last century. Visitors see how Julian labored, traveled, cooked and clothed. At eye level and from above, mounted animals, representing species to be found in Julian, are everywhere. Housed within the restored walls of the Treshil blacksmith shop, the Julian Pioneer Museum is the flagship of Julian history.

Kimball House Museum
932 A Avenue, National City, CA 91950 - National City
(619) 477-0859

Knox House Museum
280 North Magnolia Avenue, El Cajon, CA 92020 - El Cajon
(619) 444-3800
Its mission is to gather, preserve, and protect historical records and personal publications about those living in and around the El Cajon Valley. As part of its stewardship it promotes the gathering, display and appreciation of the region's history in its museum.

Leonis Adobe Museum
23537 Calabasas Road, Calabasas, CA 91302 - Calabasas
(818) 222-6511

Little Italy Heritage Museum at Convivio Center
2157 India Street, San Diego, CA 92101 - Little Italy
(888) 862-4825
Beginning in Little Italy and reaching beyond, Convivio (through its auxiliary, the Italian Historical Society of San Diego), is preserving Italian heritage and creating a lasting historical tableau through research, archival work, and historical projects, exhibits, and events coordinated in conjunction with local universities and other organizations. The Little Italy Heritage Museum at the Convivio Center will serve as a central, community resource to catalog and display Italian community historical artifacts and recount the collective historical narrative of this community.

Marston House Museum & Gardens
3525 Seventh Avenue, San Diego, CA 92103 - Balboa Park
(619) 297-9327
(619) 298-3142
One of San Diego's finest examples of the Arts and Crafts movement, constructed in 1905 for George W. Marston and his wife, Anna Gunn Marston.

Mingei International Museum
1439 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101 - Balboa Park
(619) 239-0003
The Mingei International Museum is a non-profit public institution that collects, conserves and exhibits folk art, craft and design. The museum was first founded in 1974 and its building opened in 1978

Motor Transport Museum
31949 California 94, Campo, CA 91906 - Campo
(619) 478-2492
We've spent more then 25 years accumulating history otherwise discarded or sold for scrap metal. Mack, International, Autocar, White, Federal, Nash and even Linn are a few of the names you'll find on the vehicles found here. Some have plans for restoration, some do not. Some are available for others to restore.

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego
1001 Kettner Boulevard, San Diego, CA 92101 - Downtown San Diego
(858) 454-3541
The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, in San Diego, California, USA, is an art museum focused on the collection, preservation, exhibition, and interpretation of works of art from 1950 to the present.

Museum of Making Music
5790 Armada Drive, Carlsbad, CA 92008 - Carlsbad
(760) 438-5996
Founded in 1998 by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), the Museum of Making Music was developed to showcase and celebrate the music products industry. Soon thereafter, in March 2000, the Museum was opened to the public. For over ten years, the Museum has provided opportunities for cultural enrichment while preserving our musical heritage through special exhibitions, innovative concerts and educational programs aimed toward a wide range of audiences.

Museum of Photographic Arts
1649 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101 - Balboa Park
(619) 238-7559
MOPA became one of the first museum facilities in the United States exclusively designed to collect and present the finest examples of photographic art, spanning the history of photography from the 19th century to the present day. The museum's permanent collection offers a rich photographic heritage, both as an expressive medium and a documentary record. The collection's 7,000 images include works by Margaret Bourke-White, Alfred Stieglitz and Ruth Bernhard, among 850 other photographers.

Pioneer Hook & Ladder Co - Firehouse Museum
1572 Columbia Street, San Diego, CA 92101 - Little Italy
(619) 232-3473
Founded in 1962, the Firehouse Museum occupies the former home of San Diego, CA Fire Station No. 6, which now resides in Otay Mesa. The museum's brick-and-mortar building in Little Italy features firefighting equipment and apparatus dating back to the late 1800s. La Jolla's first fire engine, a horse drawn steamer and piece of steel from the World Trade Center are some of the highlighted pieces. Firefighting's rich tradition and heritage live on in the San Diego, CA Firehouse Museum.

Rancho Buena Vista Adobe House Museum
640 Alta Vista Drive, Vista, CA 92083 - Vista
(760) 639-6164
Visit the 163-year old Rancho Buena Vista Adobe for a fun and educational experience. Tours are available Thursday through Friday, 10 am - 2:15 pm, and Saturday at 10:00 am only. The 45-minute tour includes a short video presentation.

Rancho Guajome Adobe House Museum
2210 N Santa Fe Avenue, Vista, CA 92083 - Vista
(760) 724-4082
Rancho Guajome hacienda depicts a unique example of Anglo-Hispanic architecture built on an original Mexican land grant. Distinguished as a National Historic Landmark for its contribution to our nation's history, the rambling twenty-room adobe ranch house, built with huge profits from the cattle boom of the 1850's, bustled in its heyday with extravagant fiestas, lively rodeos, and constant visitors.

San Diego Aircraft Carrier Museum
1355 N. Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101 - Downtown San Diego
(619) 702-7700

San Diego Automotive Museum
2080 Pan America Plaza, San Diego, CA 92101 - Balboa Park
(619) 398-0308
The museum is home to one of the finest collections of automotive research materials on the entire West Coast. Our volunteer library staff is willing and able to assist you with any question you might have. Looking for a repair manual for your 1957 Studebaker? We've probably got it. We can help identify old photos to help you with your memory books, etc. No question is too big or too small.....or too tough! Stop by and spend some time. Browsing is encouraged!

San Diego Children's Discovery Museum
320 North Broadway, Escondido, CA 92025 - Escondido
(760) 233-7755
The mission of the San Diego, CA Children's Discovery Museum is to inspire children to learn about our world through exploration, imagination, and experimentation. SDCDM is the only hands-on children's museum for the approximately 18,000 students in the 23 K-8 schools.

San Diego Maritime Museum & Association
1492 North Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101 - Downtown San Diego
(619) 234-9153
The Maritime Museum of San Diego, established in 1948, preserves one of the largest collections of historic sea vessels in the United States. The Museum displays permanent and temporary exhibits on maritime history, commerce and exploration and stages popular public events such as The Chocolate Festival, Pirate Buccaneer Birthday Bash, Festival of Sail each Labor Day weekend, and family sleepovers on the Star of India. Thousands of school children from throughout Southern California visit the museum each year for a variety of dockside and at-sea educational programs.

San Diego Museum of Man
1350 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101 - Balboa Park
(619) 239-2001
The San Diego, CA Museum of Man is a museum of anthropology located in Balboa Park, San Diego, California and housed in the historic landmark buildings of the California Quadrangle. The museum's collections and permanent exhibits focus on the pre-Columbian history of the western Americas, with materials drawn from Native American cultures of the Southern California region, and Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Maya. The museum also holds one of the most important collections of Ancient Egyptian antiquities in the United States, which includes authentic mummies, burial masks, figurines, and seven painted wooden coffins.

San Diego Natural History Museum
Balboa Park
1788 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101 - Balboa Park
(619) 232-3821
Its mission is to interpret the natural world through research, education and exhibits; to promote understanding of the evolution and diversity of southern California and the peninsula of Baja California; and to inspire in all a respect for nature and the environment.

San Dieguito Heritage Museum
450 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas, CA 92024 - Encinitas
(760) 632-9711
San Dieguito Heritage Museum is a history museum in Encinitas, California in the United States. Founded in 1988, the museum displays historical photographs and artifacts from Encinitas and the entire San Dieguito area.

Serra Museum
2727 Presidio Drive, San Diego, CA 92103 - Presidio Park
(619) 232-6203
Built in 1929 The Serra Museum sits on a hill known to be the birthplace of California. It is a major symbol of the city of San Diego, CA and is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Presidio Park. It was also here where Father Junípero Serra established Alta California's first mission in 1769. Docent led tours of the museum and or grounds are available on Sundays. The museum houses and showcases the collection of the San Diego History Center and is a popular venue for special events.

Sikes Adobe Historic Farmstead
12655 Sunset Drive, Escondido, CA 92025 - Escondido
(760) 432-8318
Built by Zenas Sikes whose family was among the earliest ranchers to settle in California during the western expansion. The farmhouse is recognized as one the oldest structures in San Diego. The farmstead is a certified farmers market and is open for docent-led tours during the week as well as on Sunday. It's a fun way to dive into the lives of the early pioneers that settled this land. The Sikes Adobe Farmhouse is a State Point of Historic Interest and a City of San Diego, CA historic site that is being restored by the San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority to its period of significance - the period from 1869 to 1899 - which is the time period when it was occupied by the Sikes family. From it we can learn what life was like for the pioneer settlers in San Diego shortly after statehood.

Solana Beach Heritage Museum
715 Valley Avenue, Solana Beach, CA 92075 - Solana Beach
(858) 755-2937
The 1894 ranch house is the oldest surviving residence in the city.

Temecula Valley Museum
28314 Mercedes Street, Temecula, CA 92590 - Temecula
(951) 694-6450

USS Midway Museum
1355 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101 - Downtown San Diego
(619) 702-7700

Valley Center History Museum
29200 Cole Grade Road, Valley Center, CA 92082 - Valley Center
(760) 749-2993
The eclectic offerings feature a replica of an early settler's cabin and sections of an airplane, which was built within two years of the Wright Brothers first flight and later flew out of Valley Center.

Warner-Carrillo Ranch House
29181 San Felipe Road, Warner Springs, CA 92086 - Warner Springs
(619) 297-9327
Built in 1857, the Warner-Carrillo Ranch House served as the Butterfield Stage Stop and was California's first regular overland stage connection with St. Louis. With its multilayered history, the adobe ranch house tells the story of the emigrant trail, the overland stage, and the prominent ranching history of the area.

Whaley House Museum
2476 San Diego Avenue, San Diego, CA 92110 - Old Town
(619) 297-7511
Over 100,000 people visit the Whaley House annually, with guests traveling from across the globe to experience this world-renowned museum. The Whaley House stands today as a classic example of mid-nineteenth century Greek Revival architecture, designed by Thomas Whaley himself and constructed in 1857, using bricks made in Thomas Whaley's own brickyard. Few houses in San Diego are as historically important as the Whaley House.

According to the Travel Channel's America's Most Haunted, the house is the number one most haunted house in the United States. The alleged hauntings of the Whaley House have been reported on numerous television programs and countless publications and books since first opened as a museum in 1960. Although we cannot state positively that the Whaley House is really haunted, the voluminous documentation of paranormal occurences at the site makes a compelling case.


2476 San Diego Avenue · San Diego CA 92110 · Phone (619) 297-9327
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