List of museums in San Diego County, California

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The Southern Border Region is one of nine such geopolitical designations in the State of California, USA, used for economic analysis. The region is defined to include San Diego County and Imperial County, each of which borders Mexico.

This list of museums, defined for this context as institutions (including nonprofit organizations, government entities, and private businesses) that collect and care for objects of cultural, artistic, scientific, or historical interest and make their collections or related exhibits available for public viewing. Also included are non-profit and university art galleries. Museums that exist only in cyberspace (i.e., virtual museums) are not included.

To use the sortable tables: click on the icons at the top of each column to sort that column in alphabetical order; click again for reverse alphabetical order.

Museums[edit]

Name Image Town/City Type Summary
Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum Vista Open air Antique gas and steam engines, blacksmith shop, weaving house, farmhouse exhibits
Bancroft Ranch House Museum Spring Valley Historic house Operated by the Spring Valley Historical Society, late 19th-century adobe ranch house
Barona Cultural Center & Museum Lakeside Native American website, Native American culture and history of San Diego County
Bonita Museum & Cultural Center Bonita Local history website
Cabrillo National Monument CabrilloLighthouse.jpg San Diego History Includes a museum and the Old Point Loma lighthouse
California Surf Museum California surf museum.jpg Oceanside Sports
Carrillo Ranch, LeoLeo Carrillo Ranch Carlsbad Historic house website, also known as Rancho de Los Kiotes, ranch and home of Leo Carrillo
Casa de Estudillo Casa de Estudillo - main entrance.jpg San Diego Historic house Located in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, 19th century adobe house
Casa de Machado y Stewart San Diego - Casa de Machado y Stewart 01.jpg San Diego Historic house Located in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, 19th century adobe house
Centro Cultural de la Raza San Diego Cultural Located in Balboa Park, Mexican-American and Latino cultural arts center
Chula Vista Heritage Museum Chula Vista Local history website, part of the Chula Vista Public Library System
Cooley Automotive Museum, J.A.J.A. Cooley Automotive Museum San Diego Commodity website, early automobiles, phonographs, clocks, electric trains, and 20 other types of collections
Craftsmanship Museum Carlsbad Technology Finely crafted models, engines, technology
Deer Park Winery & Auto Museum Escondido Automobile website, features hundreds of vintage vehicles and Americana collections, including Barbie dolls, Coca-Cola memorabilia, vintage radios, TVs, bicycles, household appliances
DeWitt Museum and Library, JohnJohn DeWitt Museum and Library Alpine Historic house website, operated by the Alpine Historical Society
Encinitas Historical Society Schoolhouse Encinitas School website, restored 1883 schoolhouse
Escondido History Center Escondido Open air website, six building museum in Grape Day Park
Fallbrook Art Center Fallbrook Art website
Fallbrook Gem and Mineral Society Museum Fallbrook Natural history website, minerals and gems from around the world
Fallbrook Historical Society Fallbrook Local history website, includes main museum and Pittenger House
Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum 001.jpg San Diego Aviation Aircraft, memorabilia and history of the United States Marine Corps Aviation
Gaskill Brothers' Stone Store Museum Campo Local history website, operated by the Mountain Empire Historical Society, area Native American, pioneer and military history
Gaslamp Museum at the William Heath Davis House San Diego Historic house website, mid 19th-century Victorian period house, operated by the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation
Heritage of the Americas Museum Rancho San Diego Multiple website, part of Cuyamaca College, prehistoric and historic art, culture, and natural history of the Americas
Heritage Park Village and Museum Oceanside Open air website, Friends website, historic and replica buildings including a general store, blacksmith shop and livery stables, jail, inn, school and newspaper building
Imperial Valley Desert Museum Ocotillo Local history website, botanic gardens of native plants, reconstructed prehistoric homes, exhibits of area history
Julian Pioneer Museum Julian Local history website
Junipero Serra Museum San Diego History History of the founding of the city, operated by the San Diego Historical Society in Presidio Park
Knox House Museum El Cajon Historic house website, part of Cuyamaca College, operated by the El Cajon Historical Society
Kruglak Gallery Oceanside Art website, contemporary art gallery of MiraCosta College
Lakeside Museum Lakeside Local history website, operated by the Lakeside Historical Society
Lee House, HH Lee House Lemon Grove Historic house information, 1928 Tudor Revival house, operated by the Lemon Grove Historical Society
Lux Art Institute Encinitas Art website
Magee House Museum Carlsbad Historic house website, operated by the Carlsbad Historical Society
Maritime Museum of San Diego SDMM-ships-museum-overall.jpg San Diego Maritime Several museum ships including the Star of India, an 1863 iron bark
Marston House, George WGeorge W Marston House George Marston House.jpg San Diego Historic house Located in Balboa Park, operated by Save Our Heritage Organisation
Mason Street School San Diego Mason Street School Museum 02.jpg San Diego School Located in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, first public schoolhouse in the county
MCRD San Diego Command Museum San Diego Military History of the Marines in the 20th and 21st centuries, the Marines' presence in the Southern California region, and the history of the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego
McKinney House and Museum La Mesa Historic house website, operated by the La Mesa Historical Society, early 20th-century house
Mingei International Museum San Diego Art Located in Balboa Park, folk art, craft and design from all eras and cultures of the world
Mission San Diego de Alcalá San-diego-mission-church.JPG San Diego Religious 1769 Franciscan mission church
Mission San Luis Rey de Francia Mission San Luis Rey de Francia current.jpg Oceanside History Historic Spanish mission and church
Mormon Battalion Historic Site Mormon Battalion.JPG San Diego Military website, located in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, history of the Mormon Battalion
Motor Transport Museum Campo Transportation website, trucks, engines, quarry equipment and other equipment
Museum of American Treasures National City Local history information
Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art.jpg San Diego Art Collection includes more than 4,000 works created after 1950 in all media and genres
Museum of Coronado History and Art Coronado Multiple website, art and history, operated by the Coronado Historical Association
Museum of Creation and Earth History Museum of Creation.jpg Santee Religious
Museum of Making Music MuseumOfMakingMusic.jpg Carlsbad Music History of American popular music, the manufacture and retail of musical instruments and the history of the music products industry
Museum of Photographic Arts San Diego Art Located in Balboa Park, photography, film and video
National City Heritage Square National City Multiple website, includes National City Railcar Museum, National City Depot Museum about railroads, and a historic church, row houses and music hall
Oceanside Historical Museum Oceanside Local history website, operated by the Oceanside Historical Society
Oceanside Museum of Art Oceanside Art website, contemporary art from Southern California
Old Town San Diego State Historic Park Old Town San Diego State Historic Park 04.jpg San Diego Open air Includes five original adobes and museums with exhibits including law enforcement, carriages and horse-drawn vehicles, a newspaper print shop, schoolhouse, general store, blacksmith shop
Pacific Southwest Railway Museum CampoRailStop.jpg Campo Railroad Includes 1916 railroad depot, historic railroad cars and steam and diesel locomotives on display, railroad equipment
Parsonage Museum Lemon Grove Local history information, operated by the Lemon Grove Historical Society
Poway Historical Society Museum Poway Local history website, operated by the Poway Historical and Memorial Society
Rancho Buena Vista Vista Historic house website
Rancho Guajome Adobe Vista Historic house Mid 19th century 20 room adobe house
Rancho Santa Maria de Los Peñasquitos San Diego Historic house Located in Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve, historic 1823 adobe ranch home
Reuben H. Fleet Science Center Reuben H. Fleet Science Center.jpg San Diego Science Located in Balboa Park
San Diego Air & Space Museum San Diego Aerospace Museum Entrance.jpg San Diego Aviation Located in Balboa Park, aviation and space history
San Diego Archaeological Center Escondido Archaeology website, archaeology of the San Diego region from 10,000 years ago to present day
San Diego Art Institute Museum of the Living Artist San Diego Art Located in Balboa Park
San Diego Automotive Museum Tucker.jpg San Diego Transport In Balboa Park
San Diego Children's Discovery Museum Escondido Children's website
San Diego Chinese Historical Museum San Diego Chinese Historical Museum 01.jpg San Diego Ethnic website, Chinese American experience and Chinese history, culture and art
San Diego Firehouse Museum San Diego Firefighting website, firefighting memorabilia dating back 100 years, located in Little Italy
San Diego Hall of Champions Sports Museum San Diego Sports Located in Balboa Park
San Diego History Center San Diego Local history website, located in Balboa Park, operated by the San Diego Historical Society
San Diego Model Railroad Museum Sandiegomodelrailroad.jpg San Diego Railway Indoor model railroad exhibits, located in Balboa Park
San Diego Museum of Art San Diego Museum of Art 01.jpg San Diego Art Located in Balboa Park
San Diego Museum of Man MuseumofManSD08.jpg San Diego Anthropology Located in Balboa Park, pre-Columbian history of the western Americas and Native American art and culture
San Diego Natural History Museum San diego natural history museum.JPG San Diego Natural history Located in Balboa Park
San Diego Sheriff's Museum and Educational Center San Diego Law enforcement website
San Dieguito Heritage Museum SanDieguitoHerit2.jpg Encinitas Local history Covers the history of the San Dieguto area
San Marcos Historical Museum San Marcos Local history website, operated by the San Marcos Historical Society
San Pasqual Battlefield State Historic Park Escondido History History of the 1846 Battle of San Pasqual, the bloodiest battle in California during the Mexican–American War
Santa Ysabel Asistencia Santa Ysabel History 19th century Spanish mission and church
Stein Family Farm National City Historic house website, also known as the National City Living History Farm Preserve
Stuart Collection San Diego Art Part of University of California, San Diego
Timken Museum of Art Timken Museum of Art, San Diego 01.jpg San Diego Art Located in Balboa Park, includes collection of European old master paintings, sculptures, and tapestries, American art and Russian icons
USS Midway Museum USSMidway-starboard.png San Diego Aviation Aircraft carrier and restored aircraft
Valley Center History Museum ValleyCenterHistoryMuseum.jpg Valley Center Local history Operated by the Valley Center Historical Society
Veterans Museum and Memorial Center Veternans Musueum.jpg San Diego Military Located in historic Balboa Park, San Diego and U.S. military history of the Armed Forces
Vista Historical Society & Museum Vista Local history website
Welk Museum, LawrenceLawrence Welk Museum Escondido Biographical information, information, part of the Lawrence Welk Resort
Wells Fargo History Museum San Diego History website
Whaley House San Diego - Whaley House 01.jpg San Diego Historic house Mid 19th century period house
Women's Museum of California San Diego Women's website, formerly the Women's History Museum
Woodward Museum, Guy B.Guy B. Woodward Museum Ramona Open air website, operated by the Ramona Pioneer Historical Society
WWII/Korea LVT Museum WWII Korea LVT Museum 006 crop.jpg Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton Military Exhibits on Landing Vehicles Tracked (LVT)s from World War II and the Korean War

Defunct museums[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]