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Julian, CA 92036

Julian is an historic gold mining town located approximately an hour or east of San Diego. It is the premier mountain retreat in the county and is unique in that it has four seasons. Spring brings the blossoming of many flowers including daffodils, summer is perfect for hiking and star gazing, fall is famous for our apples and fall colors, and winter brings snowfalls and bright, crisp, "Christmassy" days.

Although famous for apples and its superb apple pie one can enjoy all year round, Julian has become the center for visitors who wish to stay in the mountains but take day trips to the nearby casinos, the Anza Borrego Desert State Park and the coast. It has always been the B&B capital of Southern California, known for it's romantic atmosphere, but is now fast becoming a great destination for families, hikers, weddings and corporate retreats.

Specialty shops line our streets, our attractions are unique, ranging from wineries to wolves. From the old time melodrama to the Grape Stomp Festa, Julian events are great for couples, families and groups.

Historic Sites

Grosskopf House -- Replica of original pioneer house, owned by Chris and Annie Grosskopf. Chris worked in the mines as a blacksmith. Adjacent to Julian Pioneer Museum

Julian Historic Walking Tour---Map available for self-tour at the Chamber office located at the Town Hall---on the corner of Main & Washington Streets. Plaques placed on historic buildings on Main, Second, Third, Washington, B and C Streets reveal Julian history from Gold Rush times to the 1920s. (760) 765-1857

Julian Jail -- The two-cell jail, built in 1914, served as classy overnight accommodations for town drunks. For a time the jail contained the only indoor toilet in Julian. Corner of C and Fourth Streets

Julian Library -- The tiny public library occupies a one-room school house which served students from 1888 to 1954 in the Witch Creek community of Highway 78. It was moved to Julian and opened as a library in l974 and is currently a San Diego County library. (760) 765-0370 2133 Fourth Street

Julian Pioneer Cemetery -- Contains graves and headstones of many Julian pioneer family members. Farmer Road---Entrance located on A Street

Julian Pioneer Museum -- Julian's Little Attic boasts the finest lace collection in California, plus 1896 to 1913 clothing, photographs, household and mining equipment, Victorian era pianos, an original Julian City buggy and sleigh, extensive exhibit of Indian artifacts and animal and bird mountings, all indigenous to the area. Built in the mid-1880s to serve as a brewery for Peter Meyerhofer, the structure was converted to a blacksmith shop which operated there until the mid-1930s. (760) 765-0227 2811 Washington Street

Julian Town Hall -- The nearly 100-year-old Town Hall displays historic photos upstairs. It houses the Chamber of Commerce office where maps, brochures, books and an informed staff can provide advice on visiting Julian. Town meetings are still held here. (760) 765-1857 2129 Main Street

Spencer Valley School -- Built in 1876 as a one-room school, this unique school (now with more than one room) continues to serve youngsters in the Wynola area as a single-school district, one of the few remaining in California. (760) 765-0336 4414 Highway 78/79

Climate & Weather

At 4,235 feet, Julian's high elevation provides clean air, blue skies and four distinct seasons. Spring is generally mild and wildflowers decorate the backcountry in and around Julian while a profusion of daffodils are evident throughout the town site.

Average summer temperatures fall in the 80s with occasional summer rains in July and August. The first cold spell of fall prompts a blanket of color as the trees prepare for a winter of gentle snowfalls. Sledding and snowball fun add to the season's activities.

Julian was founded following the Civil War, when displaced Confederate Veterans from Georgia headed West to seek their fortunes in a new, mostly unsettled land. Among these were cousins Drue Bailey and Mike Julian, who found a lush meadow between Volcan Mountain and the Cuyamacas to their liking. They were there in 1869 when cattleman Fred Coleman found the first flecks of gold in a creek. It was San Diego County's first and only gold rush.

The town was named Julian, in honor of Mike, who later was elected San Diego County Assessor. The town was never big, at the most boasting a population of about 600---more than reside within the historic district today. Rumor has it that Julian almost became San Diego's county seat.

The gold rush was short-lived, nearly over within a decade. But the pioneers stayed and began farming the rich land. While many crops were planted and animals pastured, Julian proved to be a fine place to grow apples. Apples continue to be produced in Julian. Their sweet, fresh flavor lures thousands to the mountains each fall, when visitors will find fruit stands overflowing with crisp fruit, homemade cider and other delicacies.

The historic town site of Julian has approximately 300 full- and part-time residents. The surrounding area of desert and hills boasts a population of 3,000.
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