Presidio Park marks the spot where the first European settlements were founded in California and is a great place to explore the history, admire the architecture, and enjoy magnificent views. The 40-acre park features pavilions for picnicking, a beautiful green space, and historic memorials.

You are sure to enjoy the panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and San Diego River Valley. At the on-site museum, you can explore the history of San Diego through artefacts, clothing, art, and more from the Kumeyaay tribe, Mexican settlers, and Spanish explorers. On the grounds, you will also find the beautiful Arbor and the wall of ruins from the original fort.

Presidio Park - one of the highlights of 10 Best Free Things to Do in San Diego (Read all about San Diego here)

Highlights of Presidio Park

History enthusiasts are sure to be impressed by the rich past of Presidio Park. Before the appearance of Spanish pioneers, the area was home to the Kumeyaay. Once the fort and mission were built, the hill marked the epicentre of the new settlement.

When the fear of attacks had passed after the independence of Mexico, the fort was abandoned and the ruins were later used to build new structures in the area. The Presidio Hill structures were later preserved and the park was added along with the Junípero Serra Museum by philanthropist George Marston. In 1929 the park was turned over to the city.  

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Good to know about Presidio Park

You can enjoy a visit to Presidio Park free of charge, but donations are appreciated. If you arrive later in the day, be sure to check out the museum first, as the beautiful park is open to the public much later. There are numerous picnic areas where you can enjoy lunch or a snack during your visit.

You will find free parking on-site, and the park is located just a half-mile from the Old Town Transit Centre. While you are in the area, you may also enjoy a stop at the Old Town San Diego Historic Park, Whaley House, or Heritage Park.

photo by MARELBU (CC BY 3.0) modified

Presidio Park

Location: 2811 Jackson St, San Diego, CA 92110, USA

Open: Daily from 6 am to 10 pm