Anza-Borrego Desert State Park ®

Update: (April 15, 2021) With the Regional Stay at Home Order lifted, State Parks is reopening campground sites for existing reservation holders. The department will be using a phased approach to reopen other campground sites for new reservations, starting January 28. The public is advised that not all campground sites are open to the public due to the pandemic, wildfire impacts and other issues. Additionally, group campsites remain closed. Day use outdoor areas of park units currently open to the public remain open.

As State Parks increases access to the State Park System, it is critical that Californians continue to recreate responsibly in the outdoors as the pandemic is far from over.

Please take the time to read the information contained on this webpage to find out what is open and closed, and the COVID-19 guidelines for this park unit.

What is open now?
  • Anza Borrego Visitor Center (Thursdays-Mondays, 9a.m. - 5p.m. with limited capacity).
  • Camping (developed and primitive).
  • Dispersed Backcountry Camping.
  • Peg Leg and Culp Valley Primitive Camping Areas.
  • Borrego Palm Canyon Full Hookup Campsites.
  • Tamarisk Grove Campground.
  • Arroyo Salado, Blair Valley, Yaqui Pass, Yaqui Well, Bow Willow, Mt. Palm Springs, and Fish Creek primitive camps.
  • Backcountry Unpaved Roads.
  • Hell Hole Day-use Area: for day-use activities only from sunrise to sunset.
  • Sunrise Trail Head Parking/Day-use Areas.
  • Coyote Canyon Above 3rd Crossing.
  • North Coyote Canyon / Turkey Track Access Gate.
  • Borrego Palm Canyon Day-use (Borrego Palm Canyon Trail Map).
  • Group camps and group picnic areas.
  • Special events under 50 people.

What is currently closed at this park and throughout the State Park System?
Closed at this park:
  • Special events over 50 people and tours continue to be canceled until further notice.
  • Some park units and campground sites continue to be temporarily closed due to the pandemic, impacts from wildfires or other issues. Please visit the webpage of your local outdoor destination to find out if it is open.
  • High public-use indoor facilities, including museums and visitor centers.
  • Special events and tours continue to be canceled until further notice.

Are there any new visitor guidelines? 
State Parks has implemented the following guidelines to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the outdoors: 

  • Stay Local: Stay close to home during this pandemic period. If you or anyone in your household is feeling sick, please remain at home and plan your trip for another time.  
  • Plan Ahead:
    • The ongoing pandemic response continues to be dynamic and fluid. Prior to leaving home, check the webpage of your outdoor destination you plan to visit to find out if it is open, if parking is available, and what visitor guidelines are in effect.  
    • Learn what safety precautions you should take when exploring the outdoors at  
  • SNO-PARKS: Make sure your vehicle is snow ready. A permit is required for each vehicle parked at a SNO-PARK site. Parking is on a first come, first-serve basis at all SNO-PARK sites. The public is advised that parking lots are filling up early in the day. Illegal parking is prohibited. More information can be found at
  • Stay Safer at Six Feet: No matter the recreational activity, maintain a physical distance of six feet or more. Your guests should only include those within your immediate household. This means no guests or friends, and no gatherings or parties. If there are too many people to maintain the required physical distance, please visit us on a different day.  
    • Boating: Do not raft up to other boaters or pull up onto a beach next to other recreators. 
    • Off-highway Vehicle Recreation: Do not ride next to others or pull up next to someone else as it could put you in close proximity to others. Stage 10 feet or more from each other during unloading and loading. 
  • Keep Clean: Be prepared as not all services may be available. Some restrooms will be temporarily closed to keep up with cleaning schedules. Bring soap/hand sanitizer. Please pack out all trash. Park units are experiencing heavy use and you can help alleviate the impact on park facilities. 
  • Stay Covered: The state requires you to wear a face covering when you cannot maintain a physical distance of six feet or more. Individuals must have a face covering with them at all times. 

Although law enforcement entities have the authority to issue citations, the expectation is that the public is responsible for adhering to the advice of public health officials, visitor guidelines and closures.  

California State Parks continues to work with local and state officials on a phased and regionally driven approach to increase access to state park units where compliance with state and local public health ordinances can be achieved. However, the situation remains fluid and park operations can change at any time. For information on statewide current closures and available services, please visit

Phone Number

(760) 767-4205

Max. Trailer Lengths

Trailer: Up to 35 Feet
Camper/Motorhome: Up to 35 Feet

Park Hours

dawn 'til dusk (in the day use area of the developed campgrounds)

Visitor Center Hours: The Visitor Center is open 9-5 Thursday-Monday (closed Tue-Wed).

Dogs Allowed?

Dogs allowed in the campgrounds, on designated park roads, and the Visitor Center/Campground Trail.

Driving Directions to Anza-Borrego Desert SP ®

The Visitor Center is located at the west end of Palm Canyon Dr. Approaching from the west on S-22, make a left at the stop sign at the intersection of Montezuma Valley Rd and Palm Canyon Dr. Follow Palm Canyon Drive to the parking lot at the end. If approaching from the east, Borrego Salton Seaway, follow S-22 through the town of Borrego Springs. S-22 will turn into Palm Canyon Drive. Follow Palm Canyon Drive all the way to the parking lot at the end of the road.
Walk 200 yards on the sidewalk from the flagpole to the front doors of our underground building.

Camping and Lodging

Visitors will be able to reserve campsites six months in advance from the current date. Bookings may extend from the arrival date to the desired departure date – based on availability and the park’s maximum stay rules.
Reservation are available October 1st through April 30th.

Upcoming Park Events

No events scheduled at this moment.

En route Campsites
Environmental Campsites
Family Campsites
Group Campsites
Hike or Bike Campsites
Primitive Camping
RV Sites w/Hookups
RV Dump Station
Alternative Camping
RV Access
Bike Trails
Hiking Trails
Horseback Riding
Historical/Cultural Site
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Exhibits and Programs
Interpretive Exhibits
Nature & Wildlife Viewing
Family Programs
Restrooms / Showers
Drinking Water Available

Park Information

NOTICE: Camping is now allowed in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park; please continue to observe social distancing guidelines to help limit the surge of COVID-19. Stay Local; Plan Ahead; Stay Safer at Six Feet; Keep Clean; Stay Covered. Camp with members of your own household only.

Park Watch:  Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has a “Park Watch” program to help reduce theft, burglary, resource damage, and other crimes in the park.  You are invited to participate and help in the safety and protection of Anza-Borrego DSP, your campsite, as well as other campsites, other areas & park visitors around you.  If you see any of crimes or other crimes, please call the Anza-Borrego Desert Visitor Center at: 760-767-4205 

To reduce theft and other crimes, State Park Peace Officers ask you to take the following steps:

-Secure valuables in your vehicle trunk when leaving your campsite.

-Introduce yourself to those camped around you and agree to help in watching each other’s campsite and personal belongings.

-Mark your belongings for easy identification.

-Report any suspicious Activities immediately.

By following these few, simple tips, you may be assuring yourself and your neighbors of a safe, fun, and relaxing stay at your California State Park.


General Park Regulations:

This list of regulations is intended to make your camping stay at Anza-Borrego DSP a more enjoyable experience.  Anytime during your stay, if you need assistance, please contact park staff and they will help you out.


Check in Time is at 2:00 PM each day. (Sorry, No Exceptions)

-Camping fees include entry for 1 vehicle and 1 legally towed vehicle or trailer.  Additional vehicles must register and pay additional fees (Currently $10.00 each vehicle.)

-Campers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent / legal guardian, or provide, upon arrival, a letter from a parent / legal guardian granting permission to camp.  All juveniles must be in their own campsite at 10:00 PM.

-Quiet hours are from 10:00 PM to 6:00 AM.  Visitors not staying overnight must be out by 10:00 PM.

-Generators may be operated in the park between the hours of 10:00 Am and 8:00 PM.

-Campsites are limited to 8 people maximum and is designed for individual family use.  Large groups may require a Special Event Permit.

-Campsites are limited to 2 vehicles.  There is no parking for more vehicles.  A trailer is counted as a vehicle. 

-Animals must be on a leash less than 6 feet in length at all times, and may not be left unattended or outside at night.

-Alcohol and glass containers are prohibited beyond your campsite.

-All park plants and animals are protected.  Do not cut, attach items, or harass any plants or animals.

-Along all park designated dirt roads, vehicles must be parked no more than one (1) car length off a given  road where it will not disturb any natural features.

-Bicycles, mountain bikes, and skateboards must remain on all paved roads.  All riders under the age of 18 years of age must wear a bicycle helmet.

-Illegal ground fires are prohibited.  Campfires must be kept inside a camp stove or in a metal container provided the camper with a bottom and sides.

-All natural & cultural features are protected.  Nothing may be removed or disturbed.

-The entire backcountry area of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is defined as a camping facility.  Occupancy by the same persons, equipment, or vehicles of any camping facility within Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is limited to a total of thirty (30) days in any calendar year.

-No person shall launch, land, or operate a powered unmanned aircraft or Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) within Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.

-All roadways in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park-dirt, sandy wash, or paved are considered a road.  The California Vehicle Code applies to all roadways in the park and all vehicles must be highway legal and must remain on all designated roadways. All Off-Road Vehicles are prohibited in the park.  

-Firearms and fireworks are prohibited anywhere in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.

Superintendent's Closure Orders click here

ATTENTION: Camping is allowed again in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park; please continue to observe social distancing guidelines.

A DAY USE FEE of $10 per car is now being collected at The Slot (Buttes Pass area) and at Hellhole Canyon.

For current fire restrictions please call 760-767-4037

The Borrego Palm Canyon Trail is now open for DAY USE ONLY - Sunrise to Sunset

Your cooperation will help the Palm Grove recover and keep the trail open. See map of closed area.

Anza-Borrego Desert SP and the Anza-Borrego Foundation are excited to announce a new partnership with the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics for the upcoming 2020/2021 desert season. This new partnership and the Leave No Trace Initiative will encourage and educate new and returning visitors to Anza-Borrego to care for the local desert and public lands through the “Seven Principles of Leave No Trace”, available in English and Spanish. The initiative also reminds the public on their role to slow the spread of COVID-19. With many activities limited during the pandemic, outdoor public spaces have been essential to many Californians. As a result, California State Parks and partners are expecting high visitation and increased use with the beginning of the desert season this month through March/April of next year.

Below are links to the Leave No Trace principles and recommendations for getting outside during COVID-19. You can also find more information on the partnership and the Leave No Trace initiative here.

  • The Leave No Trace Seven Principles (English | Spanish)
  • The Leave No Trace Recommendations for Getting Outside During Covid-19 (English | Spanish)

Tips to Safely Enjoy Anza-Borrego Desert State Park During the Winter Season

It is important for visitors to plan their outdoor adventure at Anza-Borrego Desert SP or any desert properly. Simple actions such as taking plenty of water (1 gallon/per person/day) and food, and knowing that cell coverage is extremely limited or non-existent can help you be better prepared to safely enjoy the desert. 

During the winter season, temperatures can range from mid 80s to high 90s degrees during the day to nearly freezing temperatures during the night. It is important to plan properly for your California desert adventure.

Below you will find just a few tips to safely enjoy the desert:


  • Have a proper vehicle for your outdoor desert activities to be able to navigate through rough roads.
  • Check ROAD CONDITIONS before heading out on dirt roads.
  • We encourage you to travel with a second vehicle when on dirt roads.

Cell Phone Use

  • Cell phone coverage is spotty or nonexistent. Have a way to communicate if there is an emergency.

First Aid Kit

  • Bring a first aid kit and become familiar with it.

Outdoor Plan

  • Leave an itinerary of your trip with a family member or friend with information such as name and age of hikers/campers, trailhead or campsite name and location, and expected return date.


  • Make sure to have plenty of water and food for duration of your trip to avoid dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
  • Check Weather. Weather can change instantly.
  • Dress appropriately with layers of clothing and appropriate shoes such as hiking boots and close-toed shoes.
  • Mark tents and ropes so they are visible at night.
  • Keep it clean: pack it in & pack it out.

For more tips for visiting the desert, check out our news release for additional details.

PLEASE NOTE: Many interpretive activities have been cancelled due to the governor's call for "social distancing." Please call the Visitor Center (760-767-4205) for information about specific programs. 

Follow us on the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Facebook page and Instagram @anzaborregodesertsp for more stories about Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Tell us how you liked the interpretive programs you attended. Fill out the Visitor RAPPORT Survey.

Self-Guided Activities

Children's Outdoor Parks Passport

Junior Ranger Adventure Guide

You can print out a Black-and-White cover to color! Spanish cover.

NOTICE:  Camping is allowed again in Anza-Borrego; Please continue to follow all social distancing guidelines.

When using map apps., it is best to use Anza Borrego Desert State Park® Visitor Center for directions to the Visitor Center.  Using only Anza-Borrego Desert State Park® in some map apps. may result in directions leading to a dirt, 4 wheel drive road.


California State Parks collects day use fees of $10 per vehicle per day at the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Visitor Center, at developed campgrounds, and at The Slot, Hellhole Canyon, Mountain Palm Springs, Bow Willow, and Horse Camp . The day use fee ticket is valid at any State Park in the Colorado Desert District for the date of purchase.

Reservations for Borrego Palm Canyon Campground are made through Reserve California ( or 1-800-444-7275). Primitive campgrounds are first-come, first-serve. Calendar-year limit of 30 days applies.

Roads and Trails: Dirt roads in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park are open to street-legal vehicles only. 

Due to trail conditions, Lower Willows Hiking/Equestrian Trail in Coyote Canyon is closed.
Please be aware that the vast majority of dirt roads in the park require four-wheel-drive vehicles!

See ROAD CONDITIONS as of 3/10/21. 

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the largest state park in California. Five hundred miles of dirt roads, 12 wilderness areas and many miles of hiking trails provide visitors with an unparalleled opportunity to experience the wonders of the California Desert. The park is named for Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza and the Spanish word borrego, or bighorn sheep. The park features washes, wildflowers, palm groves, cacti and sweeping vistas. Visitors may also have the chance to see roadrunners, golden eagles, kit foxes, mule deer and bighorn sheep as well as iguanas, chuckwallas and the red diamond rattlesnake. Listening devices for the hearing impaired are available in the visitor center.

The Park is located on the eastern side of San Diego County, with portions extending east into Imperial County and north into Riverside County. It is about a two-hour drive from San Diego, Riverside, and Palm Springs.

Many visitors approach from the east or west via Highways S22 and 78. From the coast, these highways descend from the heights of the Peninsular range of mountains with spectacular views of the great bowl of the Colorado Desert. Highway S2 enters the park from the south off of Interstate 8.

Once in Borrego Springs, the easiest way to find the Visitor Center is to drive to the far west end of Palm Canyon Drive. From the parking lot ($10 fee per car per day), follow the sidewalk down about 200 yards past the flagpole to the front doors of the building, which is hidden, mostly underground!

The 3-mile (roundtrip) Borrego Palm Canyon Trail is accessed from the trailhead at the end of the main campground road ($10 Day-use parking fee). 

Most visitors approach from the east via Highways S22, S2, or 78. Visitors from San Diego via Highways 79 and 78 have the added pleasure of driving through the mountainous Cuyamaca Rancho State Park--quite a different experience from Anza-Borrego. The highways from the east climb to 2,400 feet or so and then descend about 2,000 feet to the valley. Where the highway breaks out of the high-country vegetation, it reveals the great bowl of the Anza-Borrego desert. The valley spreads below, and there are mountains all around. The highest are to the north--the Santa Rosa Mountains. The mountains are a wilderness, with no paved roads in or out or through. They have the only all-year-flowing watercourse in the park. They are the home of the peninsular bighorn sheep, often called desert bighorn. Few park visitors ever see them; the sheep are justly wary. A patient few observers each year see and count them, to learn how this endangered species is coping with human encroachment.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park® has been named an International Dark Sky Park and the town of Borrego Springs a Dark Sky Community!

This recognition for our efforts in protecting and interpreting the dark skies over the park comes from the International Dark Sky Association (IDA), and will help ensure that dark skies over Anza-Borrego remain an unspoiled resource. Read the Press Release. 



The online video journal of the Colorado Desert District covering Anza-Borrego Desert State Park®, Cuyamaca Rancho State Park and Palomar Mountain State Park.





Additional Visitor Services

  • California Overland (Vehicle tours and interpretive programs)
  • Bike Borrego (Interpretive Bike Tours)
  • County of San Diego (Agua Caliente Hot Springs)

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
Anza- Borrego Desert State Park’s rugged landscape formed largely by the forces of erosion attacking the uplifted mountains. The higher the mountains rise, the more vigorously they are attacked by rain, snow, ice, and wind, as they yield to the constant pull of gravity.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
(Photograph by Mike Fuller)

The full Geo Gems report  |  Geological Gems of State Parks

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When using map apps., it is best to use Anza Borrego Desert State Park® Visitor Center for directions to the Visitor Center.  Using only Anza-Borrego Desert State Park® in some map apps. may result in directions leading to a dirt, 4 wheel drive road.  more information under 'About Us - Location - Directions'.