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Ramona California The Best Place To Live
Ramona, California is one of the best places to live, with a rich history, diversity, and variety. Learn the best things about living here in this guide.
When you think about "home," what comes to mind? If you imagine a small town with a tight-knit community feel, your next home might be in Ramona, California. This town has the slow pace and space that you might find in a rural community but sits a stone's throw away from one of the cultural capitals of the state.
As small and sleepy as Ramona may seem from a distance, up close, it's a thriving community on its way up. You won't need to leave the town limits to run your errands and enjoy a thriving social life full of arts, sports, recreation, and culture. You can enjoy the open sky and scenic vistas without feeling detached from the wider world.
Curious about building a home in the beautiful and spacious city of Ramona? Read on to learn all of the reasons why Ramona is the best place to live if you're seeking a slow pace in a bustling state!
During the Mission Era, the entire Santa Maria Valley region was home to the Dieguenos, the local indigenous people. When Mexican leadership took over the region, the area that is now Ramona would be part of a land grant in 1843. Once California achieved statehood, it would eventually fall into the hands of LA-based land developer Milton Santee, who established the Santa Maria Land and Water Company.
Santee would officially found the town of Ramona in 1886.
The region has a long history of agriculture-driven economic growth. At one time, Ramona was the turkey capital of the entire world! It briefly went through a phase in which it was a major producer of dairy, including eggs.
Today, the area has a reputation as a producer of wine grapes, avocados, and citrus. It's essential to the thriving wine production industry in the North County region.
Ramona Community and Schools
Residents of Ramona often remark about its small-town feel. When you live in Ramona, you will know your neighbors and immediately become part of their community. This extends to the close-knit schools in the area, which are family-centered and warm spaces to learn.
The Ramona Unified School District provides education for the majority of students living in the town of Ramona. The public school offerings include seven elementary schools, two middle schools, and three high schools. Among the elementary schools is a public Montessori school.
The district also offers adult education through the Ramona Adult School.
Values in the local school district include building a culture of collaboration with the local families, who are frequently involved in their children's education. According to test scores and public data, students in Ramona Public Schools perform above average compared to other schools in the state.
There are two notable private schools within Ramona, and both have religious affiliations. They are Ramona Christian Academy and Ramona Lutheran School.
Ramona residents certainly enjoy a more rural lifestyle, and the city is an equestrian community. It's not uncommon to see your neighbors "commuting" by horse! Residents tend to share family values, which creates a sense of tight-knit kinship, even in an area with so much beautiful open space.
Even so, when you join the Ramona community, you won't find yourself stuck in the middle of nowhere! Residents do own cars and don't need to drive them very far to access the familiar comforts of larger, more suburban communities. You can enjoy a farm-grown meal in the morning, then stop for a hamburger and fries after work!
Ramona Parks and Recreation
Ramona is truly a community, and one of the hubs of this community is Ramona Community Park, operated by The Ramona Parks and Recreation Association. The Ramona Community Center is within the park itself and is where many of the public recreational offerings take place.
Programming is available for residents of all ages, with a particularly robust program available for the local seniors. The senior center is inside of the community center itself, so the community elders are never far from the action! Older residents enjoy bingo, bridge, exercise programs, arts and crafts, and instructional computer courses.
As an equestrian community, Ramona is also home to an outdoor rodeo located at the outdoor community center. It is host to many of the city-wide events that take place throughout the year.
Ramona Arts, Music, and Entertainment
Even a farmer can have a poet's heart, and your local entrepreneur can also moonlight as a painter! Idyllic Ramona is full of opportunities to enjoy and engage with arts and culture.
Upon stepping foot in Ramona, it's clear that this is a community that values art and culture. The Ramona HEART murals project includes twenty vibrant murals showcasing vivid scenes from Ramona history. The murals adorn walls throughout the town, hosted on the side of some of the businesses that keep Ramona going.
Many of the Ramona HEART murals were commissions granted to local artists. Each one has a heart hidden somewhere in the imagery, and children love to get up close and personal and search for them all over town! The project was so popular that the city also hosts "mini murals" on utility boxes throughout the city, adding color and culture to all sorts of unexpected places!
If you're in the mood for a day at the zoo, you won't have to go far. Ramona is close to a world-class animal-centered amusement: The San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
If you don't want to leave town, Oasis Camel Dairy is open monthly for farm tours, camel rides, and exciting animal shows.
The oldest building in Ramona is now the home of the local historical society and serves as a museum for residents and visitors alike. It is home to a working blacksmith shop, a research library, and a rotating display of public historical exhibitions. While you're there, you can visit the Casey Tibbs Memorial Exhibit and learn about local rodeo history.
Ramona Wineries and Breweries
Ramona, as an agricultural town, is at the center of the popular wine industry in the valley and hosts over thirty wineries. The Ramona Valley American Viticultural Area came to be in 2006, and the industry has been thriving ever since. Ramona has no shortage of vineyards growing wine grapes and, subsequently, opportunities to enjoy local wine tastings during the peak season.
Ramona is a destination for many tourists who enjoy stopping by wineries for picnics. They enjoy the mild weather and take in the beautiful vistas in the valley. Locals can enjoy these luxuries, too, and can find their new favorite winery during the Ramona Art and Wine Festival, which takes place annually in November.
Some of the award-winning wineries in Ramona include:
- Pamo Valley Winery
- La Finquita Winery and Vineyard
- Castelli Family Vineyards
- Ramona Ranch Vineyard and Winery
- Smoking Cannon Brewery
- Woof n' Rose Winery
- Mahagony Mountain Vineyard and Winery
- Barrel 1 Winery
- Hatfield Creek Winery
- Chuparosa Vineyards
There are many more where that came from, with many hidden gems scattered throughout the lush farmland in Ramona. New tasting rooms are opening all the time.
Ramona is home to Ramona Musicfest, an annual event hosted by the local Kiwanis club. It's an outdoor event with a packed schedule, and the entire day is family-friendly. It's an excellent opportunity to hear local talent, enjoy food from local restaurants, and see popular out-of-town acts on your small-town stage!
The Taste of Ramona festival is another opportunity to try out some local restaurants and find your new favorite. You'll be able to sample delicacies from the best bakeries, restaurants, breweries, and bars in Ramona. Best of all, the proceeds go back to the community as a charity initiative!
Local playwrights, rejoice! Ramona is home to the Ramona Community Theatre, a playwright's theatre where local writers and performers collaborate to produce new works in an intimate setting. There are many ways to get involved, from writing to acting and stagecraft!
For those seeking a more professional production, you can enjoy the thriving theatre scene in nearby San Diego, which is home to many of the top theatrical institutions in the state of California.
Ramona is home to one of the most popular music venues in the entire county, which has been open since 1947! In its heyday, it was a grand cinematic palace, and people came from far and wide to enjoy the decadence. Locals restored the space as a music venue in 2003, and it is now a modern and comfortable event space used by the entire town.
The venue is Ramona Mainstage, and it's still the place to be for live performances every night of the week. From cover bands to laser tributes, there is something for every music fan at this popular performing arts venue in the center of Ramona's downtown.
If you're a musician yourself, be aware that Ramona Mainstage also hosts local bands and talent. Will it become your new favorite performance venue?
Other Entertainment in Ramona
Like many tight-knit communities, the local venues frequently host events attended by a dedicated crew of residents seeking community and communion. These include local trivia nights, karaoke events, and open jams for local musicians. You can find a local event hosted by locals nearly any night of the week, and you won't need to go far!
You can find a world of cuisine in downtown Ramona, with many locally-owned restaurants. Many offer unique ethnic fare that you might not expect to find in such a small community!
Some of the most popular local restaurants include:
- El Michoacan
- Molly Malone's
- Mama Rosa
- Cheers of Ramona
- Thai Time Restaurant
- Boll Weevil
- Ramona Valley Grill
- La Cocina
- Ramona Cafe
Residents love The Oaks Grille at The San Vicente Resort, which is in the San Diego Country Estates neighborhood of Ramona. It is the top family restaurant in Ramona and houses the top bar in Ramona, too. You can stop by for any meal you please, including an impressive weekend brunch.
Ramona is not so remote that you can't find your favorite chain and fast-food restaurants in town! If you can name it, there is probably a local franchise accessible. No matter how remote your property, there is a pizza place ready and willing to deliver at all hours of the day!
Transportation in Ramona
Ramona is a rural community, and because of the distance between homes and locations, it's ideal to own a car when living here. Many residents also own horses, and it's not rare to see a resident riding through town! You won't have to deal with traffic, as it tends to be a slow-moving community.
The North County Transit Authority serves Ramona. Residents can catch the 371 bus in town for access to the local communities all the way up to Escondido.
The weather in Ramona is consistently beautiful. It gets half the annual rainfall as the rest of the country, meaning you will have so many beautiful days to spend outdoors! It also has more sunny days per year than the national average!
It does not snow in Ramona. You can expect an annual high temperature of 88 degrees and a low of only 38 degrees. Many residents don't even own coats!
Working in Ramona
Ramona is home to several top corporations. Many of these corporations and businesses are top employers in the region.
Some of these corporations and businesses include:
- UC San Diego
- General Atomics
- Sony Electronics
- Salk Institute
Whether you're a farmer or a CFO, you will find a place to work and thrive in Ramona. It is also a wonderful place to open a unique local business due to its quirky, growing downtown.
Cost of Living in Ramona
The cost of living in Ramona is higher than the U.S. average but about average for the state of California. It's important to realize what you are getting for your money. You will have plenty of acreage, breathtaking views, a warm and close-knit community, and a growing downtown full of history, art, and culture.
Ramona Outdoor Recreation
Dos Picos County Park is one of the larger community spaces, which is large enough for overnight camping, and even has cabins on site! Residents also love Collier County Park, which is home to the Boys and Girls Club and the community's public garden.
If you want to take your horse out for a spin - or give the horse a break and ride your bike for a while - you can visit the Ramona Grasslands Preserve or the Mt. Gower Open Space Preserve. Both have plenty of room for riding, hiking, biking, and exploring. The community is full of other equestrian spaces, depending on your needs.
Ramona features a walkable downtown shopping district, including several unique, eclectic, locally owned businesses. The shopping area is tree-lined and filled with many cafes, coffee shops, and bakeries where you can stop for a cup of coffee or a bite to eat on your trip.
Residents love how easy it is to spend a leisurely day shopping without dealing with congestion and mall traffic characteristic of other bustling shopping areas. You can find antique shops, the work of local craftspeople, boutiques, and more.
Some of the most unique shopping destinations in downtown Ramona include:
- Casa Rustica
- Kit Fox Outfitters
- Merdo Acres
- The Mountain Gypsy
- Ramona Antique Fair
- Squash Blossom Trading Co
- Affordable Treasures
Additionally, you can find many more traditional shopping destinations convenient to your home in Ramona. Everything from the supermarkets to the feed stores are locally owned and run.
Many of the youth and adult sports programming takes place at the town community center. The Ramona Community Center offers a Pop Warner program for future football stars and cheerleaders, as well as soccer, softball, and baseball programs throughout the year.
Rodeo is a popular sport for the local horse-lovers, too. Equestrian events take place indoors and outdoors throughout the year.
Ramona Social and Membership Clubs
Ramona is a destination for golfers! It is home to some of the most scenic golf courses in the valley. The best known is probably The San Vicente Resort Golf Course. This course was specifically designed with sustainability in mind and offers a challenging game in one of the most beautiful locations in North County.
Warner Springs Ranch Resort was newly restored. It features a championship course and amenities such as a clubhouse and restaurant. They offer membership clubs for both men and women.
For golfers who are not ready for a challenge, Barona Resort and Casino offers a golf course at multiple levels. Beginners will be right at home playing alongside the pros!
Ramona Real Estate
Ramona is an unincorporated community in North County. It contains two neighborhoods worth noting if you're looking to purchase real estate in Ramona. They are San Diego Country Estates, Rancho Santa Teresa, Highlands Hills, Highland Hills Estates, Golden Eagle, Mount Woodson, Valley View Estates, and the West End.
No matter what sort of home you're looking for, you'll find something to your tastes in idyllic Ramona. From luxury ranch homes to townhomes to rental apartments, this quiet community runs the gamut. Homes in this up-and-coming community are currently below the median across the state, so now is the time to make an offer on your dream home in Ramona.
The higher your price range, the more move-in-ready homes will be available to you in both Ramona and San Diego Country Estates. If you're looking at Ramona in search of that country feel, you'll be able to find plenty of properties that come with significant acreage and space for families, animals, and more.
In essence, if you're looking for a large, move-in-ready property with plenty of land in a quiet, up-and-coming community in the North County, now is the time to make your move.
Notable Ramona Estates and Homes
Ramona has a long history, and a lot of that history remains alive today. Many of the first buildings constructed in Ramona after it achieved statehood continue to stand today.
The very first building constructed in Ramona was a store and post office, erected in 1883. It was a popular stop for those traveling through the valley by stagecoach, like a modern rest stop today. Early residents built the town's first house next door to the business in 1886.
Today, the store and home are the sites of the Ramona Pioneer Historical Society and Guy B. Woodward Museum. Locals can visit the historical society to learn more about the early history of the town.
Notable Ramona Residents
Many notable individuals have called Ramona home at some point during its long and thriving history. That includes actors, athletes, and a few individuals who carved out their unique niche after growing up in lovely Ramona!
Some of the familiar names may include:
- James Cagney
- Nick Vincent
- William Thomas Burns
- Dai Vernon
- Casey Tibbs
- Lynda Weismeier
With its proximity to the cultural hub of the state, professional athletics, and other recreation opportunities, it's no wonder that Ramona has managed to produce familiar names and faces. If you move here with your family, your child may be the next famous name on the list of famous Ramona residents!
Ramona Fun Facts
Did you know that Ramona was not always called Ramona? The original name of the town was Nuevo. However, another California town called Nuevo failed to thrive and dissolved, which inspired the residents to change the name.
Ramona was once known as the Turkey Capital of the World and named a "Turkey Queen" annually! Ramona town hall houses a collection of turkey feather dresses, and the oldest bar in town is The Turkey Inn!
Live Your Best Life in Ramona California
Are you seeking a close-knit, rural community within driving distance of San Diego? Ramona California is an up-and-coming community where you can ride your horse to get a world-famous cinnamon roll on your way to a quirky, locally-owned boutique! These reasons, among others, make it one of the best places to live in the state of California!
Pack up your things, jump on your horse, and begin shopping for your dream home in this gem in North County! Ramona's premium real estate agency, LUXURYSOCALREALTY, is ready to find you your perfect spot in this thriving community. Contact us today to start the process and make beautiful Ramona your home.