Skip to main content
  1. Travel
  2. City Guides

Visiting Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park

See also

The latest spot on my historical landmarks of California tour was Leo Carrillo’s “Ranch of the Spanish Daggers” in Carlsbad, California. Approximately two hours south of Los Angeles, the ranch, originally owned by actor Leo Carrillo, is now a 27-acre public park that is a perfect combination of conservation, beauty and history.

More Photos

Leo Carrillo, best known for playing “Pancho” in “The Cisco Kid” television series, originally bought about 1,700 acres of land in an effort to recreate an authentic Old California working ranch. At one point the ranch had over 600 head of cattle, horses, pigs, chickens and peafowl and grew everything from corn to citrus trees. The lands passed from Carrillo to his daughter, who sold off the land in pieces, including the lot that is now owned by Carlsbad for the park.

Carlsbad has taken great pains to renovate the park lands. The barn is now a visitor center and theater (where you can see a 13-minute introductory film). Adobe buildings, a hacienda, reflecting pool and other structures are scattered about the property just waiting for visitors to discover them. You can get maps at the visitor center to help you on your self-guided tours, and on Saturdays and Sundays there are 90-minute guided tours available. Building interiors are only available during the guided tours.

Admission is free. Dogs are not allowed on the park land. The park is closed on Mondays and on city holidays, but otherwise is open to the public from 9 to 5pm Tuesday through Saturday and 11 to 5pm on Sundays. Nature lovers will really enjoy seeing the varieties of plants, flowers and trees that have been cultivated on the property (not to mention the occasional peacock). The paths are moderately sloped up and down, so it’s accessible for many, but you should be prepared to walk quite a bit on both paved and uneven terrain.


Today's top buzz...

  • Google patents contact lens camera
    Google has filed for a patent to develop contact lenses capable of taking photos
    Tech Tips
  • Glen Campbell
    Learn all about 'Glen Campbell … I’ll Be Me,' a documentary of his final tour
    9 Photos
  • Rabbit owners
    Bringing home the bunny: Important information for rabbit owners
    7 Photos
  • Thomas Haden Church
    Thomas Haden Church's thoughts on his latest film ‘Heaven is for Real'
    'Heaven is for Real'
  • Soft drink fine
    South Carolina man faced a big fine for refilling his drink at the VA Medical Center
    Strange News
  • Dog's Easter basket
    How to fill your dog’s Easter basket with the perfect toys
    Easter Basket

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about and apply today!