Hotels in East County

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What you should know about East County

California may be well known for its coastal cities, but head east from San Diego and you’ll soon discover there’s a lot more to this state than meets the eye—with an incredibly diverse and action-packed wilderness awaiting you. Even though it only takes 20 minutes or so to reach East County from Downtown San Diego, you soon find yourself in another world. Discover a taste of the Old West with sleepy towns, majestic mountains, and a range of activities for an adventurous getaway.

Hotels in East County


The range of accommodation in East County is as diverse as its landscape. For those seeking an upmarket East County hotel there are many that have pools, fitness centers, and more, such as Ayres Lodge Alpine, located near Cleveland National Forest. Some of these even have a casino on-site, like Viejas Casino & Resort— a top choice for those travelling in East County. For travelers on a budget, there is plenty of cheap accommodation in East County, with budget hotels mainly concentrated in the towns near San Diego, such as El Cajon.

Things to see in East County


If you’re visiting East County then Julian is a place you shouldn’t miss—a quaint mountain town that far surpasses its size with the range of things to see and do. It’s famed for its apple pie and cider, so be sure to visit around harvest time (September-November) if you can. Not only that but it offers great country-style restaurants, unique stores, and plenty of horseback riding and hiking trails. Owing to its mountainous landscape, East County is also great for rock climbing. Santee Boulders is ideal for the casual climber, and there are more challenging climbs in places like Mission Gorge in Mission Trails National Park. For some less strenuous recreation take a trip to Lake Jennings— the perfect place to relax with a picnic or some fishing. East County also has an abundance of great craft beer breweries, with some such as the Alpine Beer Company offering tours.

Good for families


East County is an ideal place for adventurous families who want to experience California’s natural beauty and abundance of activities—whether you’re panning for gold in an old mining town, riding on horseback through the countryside, or hiking to the top of a mountain to enjoy stunning vistas. Being in the countryside you’ll find that it offers great value for money too, so you can easily find the best East County hotel rates. Aside from families it’s also great for couples and solo travelers who want to experience something off the beaten path, especially those who love outdoor activities.

How to get to East County


The nearby city of San Diego has excellent transport links—such as the San Diego International Airport—making it the best place to start your trip to East County. From here, you can take the San Diego Trolley to several of the towns in East County including El Cajon. However, if you want to experience all of what the area has to offer then grab yourself a map and head out by car. A short drive East on I-8 from San Diego and you’ll soon be in the beautiful wilderness of East County.