borrego springs sculpture garden

Side Trips: Borrego Springs

Here are five ways to explore this stunning desert destination surrounded by Anza Borrego Desert State Park.

Staff Report Attractions, Current Guide, Day Trips

borrego springs sculpture garden

The only California town that’s surrounded entirely by a state park, this locale blooms with raw desert beauty. It’s a great choice for outdoor recreation and camping. A certified International Dark Sky Community, Borrego Springs boasts some of the best stargazing in the country.

Sky Art Sculpture Garden

Deep in the magical desert landscape of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, more than 130 gargantuan metal sculptures lurk in the sand. Visit to glimpse a 350-foot sea serpent, a giant scorpion, and battling bighorns among other real and fantastical creatures created by artist Ricardo Breceda.

Ocotillo Wells State Vehicular Recreation Area

Explore the vast open desert in an ATV at this state vehicular recreation area, where more than 85,000 acres are open to off-roaders and overnight campers, October through May. Landmarks include Devil’s Slide, a 200-foot-high granite and sand island with hidden mine shafts that are said to be haunted.

Rams Hill Golf Club

This gorgeous green golf course designed by Tom Fazio, seemingly in the middle of nowhere, embraces the quietude of the surrounding landscape for an unforgettable experience. Just over 7,200 yards from the tips, the course serves complimentary tacos to players on weekends and fresh-baked apple-caramel cookies every day of the week after the 18th hole.

The Slot

A 2.3-mile loop trail winds through a narrow siltstone canyon whose walls tower overhead. While the route is easy, some sections are tight and require a bit of scrambling over rocks. After emerging from the canyon, the loop finishes along a dirt road with no shade but stellar views.

Peg Leg Smith Historical Monument

Thomas Long Smith, better known as Peg Leg, claimed he found a heap of gold in the hills of Borrego Springs. Then, he forgot where it was buried. A placard on Henderson Canyon Road immortalizes Peg Leg’s story. Supposedly, tossing 10 rocks into a nearby pile brings luck to all those who dare to search for his hidden treasure.