Top Attractions for First-Timers

Theme Parks

Looking for thrills and family fun? Escondido is home to two exciting theme parks. At the Escondido Kart Racing indoor go-kart track, race against friends and family at speeds up to 45 mph on the facility’s challenging multi-elevation road course. For outdoor fun, Mountain View Park features a zip line tour, climbing walls, and obstacle courses set among the scenic boulder formations and oaks of this rugged county park.


Escondido has a long history of grape growing and winemaking. Several family-owned wineries offer tastings in charming settings. At Orfila Vineyards and Winery, sample award-winning Rhone-style wines on the outdoor terrace set amid rolling vineyards. For a small town vibe, stop by Belle Marie Winery housed in a historic barn on Centre City Parkway. Enjoy pizza and live music on weekends.

Welk Resort Theatre

Come experience Broadway-style musicals and plays at the Welk Resort Theatre. This professional theatre company puts on lavish productions in an opulent theater. Upcoming shows include Spamalot, The Wizard of Oz, and Mama Mia. With reasonable ticket prices, the theater is popular with locals and visitors alike.

Grand Avenue

This vibrant downtown street has a great collection of locally-owned boutiques, restaurants, cafes and galleries. Find treasures and souvenirs at places like Condina’s Consignment, Retro Row Antiques, and Art Hive Gallery & Studios. Fuel up at one of Grand Avenue’s many excellent eateries like Swami’s Cafe, Metro Diner, and Hachi Ramen.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Get up close to rhinos, giraffes, lions, and more at this huge wildlife sanctuary and conservancy operated by the San Diego Zoo. Go on a guided safari tour, get splashed on the river rapids ride, or observe animals in expansive enclosures that mimic natural habitats. With an on-site hotel, it’s easy to extend your stay.

Hidden Valley Enoteca

This family-owned Italian restaurant serves wood-fired pizzas, pastas, and mains made with fresh local ingredients on a charming herb-fringed patio. Complement your meal with a glass of wine from their extensive list of California vintages. Hidden Valley Enoteca is a local favorite. Reservations are recommended.

Lake Wohlford

Escape to the mountains and enjoy boating, fishing, hiking and picnicking at this peaceful recreational lake just northeast of Escondido. Rent kayaks, take the 2.5 mile lakeside trail, or try your hand at catching trout, catfish, and bass.

Escondido History Center

This museum and cultural center brings Escondido’s early history to life through exhibits and historic buildings. Walk through a replica 1890s farmhouse, see period furnishings, and learn how agriculture put Escondido on the map. Fun hands-on activities for kids.

Cruisin’ Grand

On Friday evenings from April through September, Grand Avenue closes to traffic for this iconic Southern California weekly event. Check out gleaming hot rods, muscle cars, low riders and more while enjoying live music, shopping vendors and classic car giveaways.

Stone Brewing

Tour one of the country’s largest craft breweries and taste award-winning beers like Stone IPA and Arrogant Bastard Ale. Dine at the onsite bistro featuring locally sourced cuisine, or relax in the massive gardens. Kid and dog friendly.

Daley Ranch

Boasting over 3,000 acres of rolling hills, mountain ridges and lush valleys, this historic property was once a working ranch. Today it’s a recreation area with miles of multi-use trails for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding.

Jesmond Dene

Built in the 1920s, this historic home of entrepreneur Alice Weston showcases 17 rooms of fine European furnishings and design. Tour the immaculate French provincial house and stroll through formal gardens copying great European estates.

San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum

Let kids run wild at this interactive museum tailored for ages 10 and under. They’ll love driving real cars, shopping for groceries, climbing a fire engine and engaging in dozens of other skill-building activities. Fun for the whole family.

Queen Califia’s Magical Circle

This one-of-a-kind sculpture garden by renowned artist Niki de Saint Phalle features colorful mosaic snakes, lizards, animals and mythological creatures. The serene park setting includes areas for reflection, meditation, and contemplation. Free admission.

Escondido Farmer’s Market

Every Tuesday afternoon, this lively open-air market brings the best of Escondido’s farms to one place. Sample juicy citrus, fragrant lavender, fresh-baked breads, and artisanal foods while enjoying live music. The perfect taste of local flavor.

How to Get Around Escondido

Public Transportation

Escondido has limited public transportation options compared to larger cities. The Sprinter light rail connects Escondido to nearby coastal cities like Oceanside. While economical, both systems only run on weekdays and have limited schedules.

Taxis and Rideshares

Taxis can be hailed in downtown Escondido and outside major attractions, but waits can be long during busy times. Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft operate in the city and offer shorter wait times through their apps. However, surge pricing can make single rides quite expensive. These options work best for small groups and flexible travelers.

Charter Buses

For larger groups visiting Escondido, charter buses are the most convenient and cost-effective transportation option. Charter bus companies like Escondido Party Bus Company provide plush, spacious buses equipped with amenities like TVs, WiFi, power outlets, and restrooms. With professional team, you get door-to-door service on your schedule. Charter buses keep groups together and on time.

Ready to Get Started?

We hope this insider’s guide has you excited to uncover the charms of Escondido! With wonderful attractions, scenic beauty, and great local dining, Escondido has something for all interests and ages. And getting around is a breeze with charter bus services tailored to your group’s size and needs. For your upcoming school, church, team, or corporate trip to Escondido, get a personalized quote from Escondido Party Bus Company at (909) 663-9586. Their fleet of luxury buses will make your getaway unforgettable. Let the adventures begin!