Queen Califia’s Magical Circle Garden
3333 Bear Valley Parkway
Escondido, CA 92025
Located in the Iris Sankey Arboretum Kit Carson Park
Phone: (760) 839-4691
Dog-Friendly: No Kid-Friendly: Yes
Open: Tuesdays, 9AM to noon // Thursdays, 9AM to noon // 2nd Saturday of each month, 9AM to 2PM.
“This unusual sculpture garden was created by the late, internationally famous Niki de Saint Phalle. It is one of the four large-scale sculptural environments designed and built by the artist and her studio collaborators, and the only one located in the United States. The garden is a joint effort by Saint Phalle, who financed the sculpture project, and the city of Escondido, which acquired the land and is responsible for landscaping, maintenance and operation.
Saint Phalle chose as her subject the mythical Queen Califia, an Amazon warrior for whom the state of California is named. This amazing creature, first popularized in a 16th century romance novel, is believed to have ruled a terrestrial island paradise of gold and riches “on the right hand of the Indies”
This spot is tucked away behind Kit Carson Park. Look for the huge snake and you’re headed in the right direction:
Follow the mosaic road! I’ve noticed a lot of mistletoe growing on the trees out here too!