Historic House Museums that you can visit in California.

Take a Driving Tour to many of these House Museums for Rich California History.

Cannot afford a trip out of state with the family to see some history?  Well you may find it right in your backyard in California!

The following are Historic House Museums in California that might only  be a short drive from your house. Pack the car, kids and lunch and head off for an educational day trip!

Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.

4002 Wallace Street San Diego, CA  92110 Phone: (619) 220-5422

Year Built: Admission Price: Free Hours: 10am-5pm Daily

Old Town San Diego State Historic Park pays tribute to the cultural influences that make California special. Restored and reconstructed buildings in central San Diego are now museums, shops and restaurants that capture the energy of Old Town between 1821 and 1872. The central plaza is lined with buildings—some dating back to the 1820s—that offer a glimpse of the lifestyles of both ordinary residents and the most wealthy and influential.

The Whaley House Museum

The Whaley House Museum
The Whaley House Museum

San Diego Avenue San Diego, CA  Phone: (619) 297-9327

Year Built: 1856 Admission Price: See their website Hours: See their website

The building was started with the construction of a granary that later became the courtroom. The two-story house and store addition was designed by Thomas Whaley himself and constructed in 1857. It was the first two-story brick edifice in San Diego, and was built from bricks made in Thomas Whaley’s own brickyard. Whaley boasted, “My new house, when completed, will be the handsomest, most comfortable and convenient place in town or within 150 miles of here.”


Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden


LA County Arboretum & Botanic Garden
LA County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

301 N. Baldwin Ave.
Arcadia, CA  91009
Phone: (626) 821-3222

Year Built: 1880
Admission Price: Adults $8.00, Seniors $6.00, children 5-12 $3.00,
Hours: 9 AM to 4:30 PM, grounds close at 5

Designed by architect Albert Austin Bennett, the Queen Anne Cottage and Coach Barn were built for Elias J. Baldwin, a businessman in 1885, 1880 respectively. Painted red and white the buildings are listed together on the National Register as remarkable examples of Victorian architecture as well as the surrounding landscape which is a rare remnant Victorian landscape in


Bodie State Historic Park

Bodie State Historic Park
Bodie State Historic Park

Hwy 270
Bodie, CA
Phone: (760) 647-6445

Year Built:
Admission Price: Adults $7, Children $5
Hours: See their website

Bodie State Historic Park is a genuine California gold-mining ghost town. Visitors can walk down the deserted streets of a town that once had a population of nearly 10,000 people. The town is named for Waterman S. Body (William Bodey), who had discovered small amounts of gold in hills north of Mono Lake. In 1875, a mine cave-in revealed pay dirt, which led to purchase of the mine by the Standard Company in 1877. People flocked to Bodie and transformed it from a town of a few to a booming Gold Rush Town. It is right off the 395 before Carson.


Leonis Adobe Museum


Leonis Adobe Museum
Leonis Adobe Museum

23537 Calabasas Road
Calabasas, CA  91302
Phone: (818) 222-6511

Year Built: 1844
Admission Price: See their website
Hours: See their website

L.A. Historic Cultural Monument . Built in the Monterey style in the 1840’s, it was occupied by Miguel Leonis as early as the 1870’s, one of the most colorful, influential and prominent figures of early Los Angeles. Also on the grounds is an barn built in 1912 as well as the Plummer House known as the “oldest house in Hollywood”.


Camarillo Ranch

Camarillo Ranch
Camarillo Ranch

201 Camarillo Ranch Road
Camarillo, CA  93012
Phone: (805) 389-8182

Year Built: 1892
Admission Price: See their website
Hours: See their website

The Camarillo Ranch was originally a 10,000 acre Spanish land grant created in 1837, patented to Gabriel Ruiz in 1866, then purchased by Juan Camarillo in 1875. His son Adolfo built the Queen Anne Victorian home in 1892. Later the barn and stables were added to support the agricultural work and house the renowned Camarillo White Horses. Today the ranch is owned by the City of Camarillo and operated by the non profit Camarillo Ranch Foundation.

Death Valley

Scotty’s Castle

Scotty's Castle Death Valley
Scotty’s Castle Death Valley

Greenland Blvd.
Death Valley, CA  92328
Phone: (760) 786-3200

Year Built:
Admission Price: See their website
Hours: See their website

Hidden in the green oasis of Grapevine Canyon in far northern Death Valley, the Death Valley Ranch, or Scotty’s Castle as it is more commonly known, is a window into the life and times of the Roaring 20’s and Depression 30’s. It was and is an engineer’s dream home, a wealthy matron’s vacation home and a man-of-mystery’s hideout and getaway. Walter Scott, Death Valley Scotty, convinced everyone that he had built the castle with money from his rich secret mines in the area. Albert Mussey Johnson actually built the house as a vacation getaway for himself and his wife Bessie.


Escondido History Center

321 N. Broadway
Escondido, CA  92025
Phone: (760) 743-8207

Year Built: 1890
Admission Price: Contact Museum
Hours: 1pm-4pm, Tue-Sat

Established in 1976, the History Center includes buildings from Escondido’s early development that were relocated to Grape Day Park.

Please view even  more in our piclens gallery:

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There are so many more to visit and they are all on and compliments of:



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