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Cabrillo National Monument

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Cabrillo National Monument (Spanish: Monumento nacional Cabrillo) is at the southern tip of the Point Loma Peninsula in San Diego, California, United States. It commemorates the landing of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo at San Diego Bay on September 28, 1542. This event marked the first time a European expedition had set foot on what later became the West Coast of the United States. The site was designated as California Historical Landmark #56 in 1932. The area was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.

The park offers a view of San Diego’s harbor and skyline, as well as Coronado and Naval Air Station North Island. On clear days, a wide expanse of the Pacific Ocean, Tijuana, and Mexico’s Coronado Islands are also visible. A visitor center screens a film about Cabrillo’s voyage and has exhibits about the expedition.

The Old Point Loma Lighthouse is the highest point in the park and has been a San Diego icon since 1855. The lighthouse was closed in 1891, and a new one opened at a lower elevation, because fog and low clouds often obscured the light at its location 129 meters (422 feet) above sea level. The old lighthouse is now a museum, and visitors may enter it and view some of the living areas.

The area encompassed by the national monument includes various former military installations, such as coastal artillery batteries, built to protect the harbor of San Diego from enemy warships. A former army building hosts an exhibit that tells the story of military history at Point Loma.

The annual Cabrillo Festival Open House commemorates Cabrillo with a reenactment of his landing at Ballast Point, in San Diego Bay. Other events are held above at the National Monument and include Kumeyaay, Portuguese, and Mexican singing and dancing, booths with period and regional food, a historical reenactment of a 16th-century encampment, and children’s activities.

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Nearby Locations:

Point Loma Tide Pools (0.3 miles)
Sunset Cliffs Natural Park (3.2 miles)
Glorietta Bay Park (4.2 miles)
Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego (5.3 miles)
San Diego Zoo (6.9 miles)
Balboa Park (San Diego) (7.1 miles)
Pacific Beach, San Diego (8.5 miles)
Law Street Beach (9 miles)
Kate Sessions Park (9.6 miles)
Wipeout Beach (12.1 miles)
Visit more amazing locations in:
California, West


Maps & Directions:

Get Driving Directions:
Cabrillo National Monument, 1800 Cabrillo Memorial Dr
San Diego, California 92106

Visit the Cabrillo National Monument Website

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This article uses material from the Wikipedia article “Cabrillo National Monument“, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.