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Review Highlights
Must see if you enjoy nature, and appreciate saving the world-& our environment

they've really done the nature center up super nice, really educational and it's a DOG friendly... read more

Reviewed 3 weeks ago
rk g
Boulder Creek, California
Local gem, truely hidden

This is a great place to go and chill, take your family for some nice views, walking, seeing... read more

Reviewed January 4, 2019
San Diego, California
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All reviews visitor's center nature center enjoy nature limited parking ecological reserve bird life great walk migrating birds native plants bird watching water birds habitat information benches leash shrubs paths
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13 - 18 of 65 reviews
Reviewed August 8, 2017

When he was still living, the Rockett brought me here to absorb the San Diego County wonder called San Elijo (not Sal Elijo). Thanks kindly Rockett. He wasn't fooling,what a beautiful place!

First, what a wonderful, hilly area for a nature preserve! The trails were well kept. I simply could not understand why or how we only passed two other Hikers, during the 4 hours we were there! Coastal California only has so many regional, or lagoon parks, where one can observe scenery akin to undisturbed Coastal watersheds. THIS IS ONE SUCH SITE!!!

The trails have benches positioned along the route with wonderful scenic views. When the Rockett tired, we sat at these convenient benches as he regaled me about past events. Epic, memorable!

The one time we passed some other Hikers, they were such wonderful people: I wondered why we didn't already know them. When we were so happy to share this wonderful place with passer-byes, I bet they felt the same. I reckoned they felt the same, regardless. What a remarkable place!

After the Rockett passed, we held his "Remembrance of Life" at the San Elijo Reserve Park, nestled in the heart of this preserve. Many attended, who never previously connected, and we all felt bound by this wonderful place: all invited by the Rockett to appreciate one of his true joys,,, together. Whomever named this TripAdvisor page, is in a hurry. San means "Saint" for good reason. It, in my opinion, is sad someone needed to misspell it (as there is a Saint responsible for this preserve). I wish them well and hope they correct this page for the sake of those who remember it and those who seek it in the future.

Date of experience: September 2016
Thank Feedbackart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 8, 2017

Easy to long trails, lots of birds for birdwatching, hermit crabs, jumping fish, a wonderful nature center..there is something for everyone.

Date of experience: August 2017
Thank Moxiethebeagle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 10, 2017 via mobile

I can't believe I didn't know about this place sooner. I started taking my tot when he was around 1.5 (now 2.5yrs) and we love it. The folks are so friendly and always willing to talk about the snakes or the tortious. My son loves looking at all of the creatures they have an exploring the visitor center before and after we venture out for our short nature walk around the loop. It's an added bonus that we usually get to see a train go by across the Lagoon too! It's a win win for both of us and nice to have a quiet spot where he can still get his energy out. I have been warned by others though that there have been rattle snakes seen on/near the path. We've never come across one but it's something to be aware of if you have small kids or dogs with you.

Date of experience: June 2017
Thank Jamie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 10, 2017

This wonderful slice of aquatic beach/lagoon wilderness is such a breath of fresh air after a day of hectic SoCal traffic and work pressure. Easily accessible from the I-5 or Coast Highway in Cardiff, I urge you to enjoy this serene location. Whether you want to just relax or do some casual strolling or light jogging, the trails through the Reserve are very clear, flat and scenic.You'll see all kinds of wildlife and the Reserve has helpful signage to identify various types of birds and other creatures. Bring the kids, you'll all have a pleasant visit.

Date of experience: September 2016
1  Thank Joel K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed June 29, 2017

San Elijo Ecological Reserve is huge, with lots of options for exploring and photographing nature. If you're a family with young kids, the nature center has great exhibits and programs. If you're looking for a short easy walk, the trail out the front door has great views of the lagoon. For the center and/or a short walk, allow 30-60 minutes.

For adults, families with teens, or hikers the trails on the south side of the lagoon or east of the freeway offer various degrees of difficulty. The ranger at the center can help you pick. Because you must drive to those trail heads, and due to the length of some of the trails, depending on which trail you choose and how far you go, allow 1-2 hours, and expect lots of bird life and spectacular views.

Date of experience: April 2017
1  Thank Carl C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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