- Visit the Reserve
- The Conservancy
- Gateway Park
WELCOME TO SAN ELIJO LAGOON ECOLOGICAL RESERVE
Resting in the shade (Photo: A. Bearden-Kuhns)
Trails are open dawn to dusk.
San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve is located in north San Diego County, between the cities of Encinitas and Solana Beach, extending inland to Rancho Santa Fe.
Explore a 1,000-acre reserve, home to hundreds of species of unique plants and animals. Seven miles of trails provide opportunities for hiking, running, bird watching, photography, and the thrill of discovery that comes with visiting natural places.
Hiking time is generally 1.5 hours on any of the eight trails. Many trails have interpretive signage and trail guides that highlight life in the reserve.
San Elijo Lagoon is one of few remaining coastal wetlands in Southern California. Trails wind through six plant communities, home to:
In 2009, the Conservancy hosted its first Bioblitz, a 24-hour inventory of all living organisms in San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve. Dozens of scientists confirmed more than 735 species of fishes, spiders, insects, reptiles, mammals, birds, amphibians, plants, algae, and fungi. Wildlife flourishes in this region, and its continued protection is critical to ensure that our future generations will enjoy this wetland's incredible biodiversity.
San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve is jointly managed by:
All wildlife and resources are fully protected.