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Los Rios District – San Juan Capistrano

Across the railway tracks from the Capistrano Depot nestles a historic district of Los Rios District – San Juan Capistrano. It’s the oldest neighborhood in California that has about forty homes. The houses here include three original adobe structures, namely The Silvas, the Rios, and the Montanez.

The mission builders and the ranch workers developed this community during the late 1700s. While the Spanish mission to convert the Indian Acjachemens progressed, the people started to build the Great Stone Church. Soon, the people in Los Rios District and the Spaniards united their cultures. European immigrants then built other homes during the early 1900s.

These days, the community of Los Rios District consists of private residences and businesses. These businesses are open to locals and tourists.

The Los Rios Street Historic District

In 1983, the National Register of Historic Places listed the Los Rios Street Historic District in San Juan Capistrano as one of the country’s historic places. It’s the oldest occupied neighborhood in California with infrastructures that dated back in 1794.

Along Los Rios Street, you can witness a lot of fascinating and interesting facts about the Los Rios District.

Things to Do in Los Rios District

Strolling around the streets of Los Rios District gives you a laid-back feel. It’s a slow-paced life just like how it was many years ago. You can see several trees and plants like eucalyptus, palm trees, and willow trees. Also, there are cacti and wildflowers. It’s like walking around a quiet, westside town.

Discover a lot about the history of San Juan Capistrano as well as the Los Rios District in this beautiful place. Aside from watching the swallows, you can be in awe with its well-preserved historical landmarks. You can even find a collection of desert plants and flowers in the area.

Get fascinated with history and its origins. Los Rios District offers a lot of exciting stories for you. You can even grab a map of the historical sites in Southern California here and explore the area.

Enjoy Petting Friendly Animals at Zoomar’s

There are fun activities that tourists and locals can enjoy in this cozy neighborhood. Near the train station, you can cross the tracks and visit Zoomar’s Petting Zoo. This is an excellent place for both children and adults. Your kids will surely love the company of zoo animals.

Of course, it’s a petting zoo. For sure, you and your kids will enjoy petting those cute animals. Children can also ride ponies, feed rabbits, and goats. You and your family can enjoy this lovely place. Entrance fee is only around $6-$10.

Uncover Los Rios District’s History at the O’Neill Museum

How far does your $1 go? At the O’Neill Museum, you only need a dollar to enter this impeccably preserved old house.

This cozy historical setting can let you rehash about how the people lived way back in the 1800s. There were neither a kitchen nor a bathroom when the house was built. You’ll be amazed as to how conventional and straightforward their lives were compared to modern day living.

Be in Awe at the Three Historic Adobes of Los Rios District

Three original adobes can be found right in the middle of the Los Rios District. Check out the adobes of the Silvas, the Rios, and the Montanez. Every adobe can send you back in time when missionaries and native Americans occupied the area.

One of the adobes, the Rios, is still owned and occupied by Feliciano Rios’ family since day one. This adobe was built for the Spanish soldier while he was on the mission. You can find artifacts and interesting facts about the place.

Places to Dine

Strolling around Los Rios District can also make you want to try the different dining into one of their restaurants. Go and dine in one of the beautiful places to eat at Los Rios District.

Hidden House Coffee

You can enjoy sipping coffee while having a good view of Los Rios District at the Hidden House Coffee. They serve freshly brewed coffee and tasty pastry to pair it with. Their cold brew coffee and croissants are a must-try.

Hummingbird House Cafe

Delicious appetizers, sandwiches, and salads! You can sit and have a good meal at this cozy dining place, the Hummingbird House Cafe. They serve down to earth food options that can surely leave you with a happy stomach. This cafe sits near the railway tracks so you can also have a beautiful view of trains passing by the place.

Ramos House Cafe

The Ramos House Cafe is one of the best brunch restaurants in the area. This famous dining place offers delicious dishes on their menu. The Ramos House Cafe may be serving pricey meals, but they’re surely worth trying out.

Places to Buy

Sometimes it’s rewarding to buy yourself a souvenir or a homecoming gift to your family and relatives. Various shops are available for you to purchase gifts here.

Art Shops

Are you an art enthusiast? Several shops around the area sell various art pieces and trinkets. There’s a huge display of art collection made by different artists. The different art styles will leave you in awe as you enter every room.

Antique Shops

Los Rios District has shops that sell vintage pieces and different beautiful antiques. You might want to buy one to add to your antique collection if it’s something you’re fond of. Who knows you might find something that attracts you. It’s worth exploring around this town for art and antique collectors.

Los Rios District truly tells a lot about history. You’ll feel like you’ve traveled back in time to witness their way of living centuries ago. If you like Spanish history and culture, come and visit this place.

The historical landmarks aren’t the only places that you might want to visit. The lovely landscape, cozy shops, great places to dine and chill, you can find them here. For sure they’re excellent places to visit in San Juan Capistrano.


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