Jack’s Pond Nature Center


Jack’s Pond Nature Center offers hands-on nature study, hikes and a curriculum-based outdoor education program. It is the perfect place for a field trip, birthday party or scout meeting.

Visitors of all ages are welcome to encounter the many wonders of this natural, rustic learning and hiking habitat. Trained, knowledgeable docents or a City of San Marcos Interpretive Specialist will be available for direction or questions during open hours.

About Jack’s Pond Nature Center
Nature Center 1
Jack’s Pond Nature Center promotes understanding, appreciation, and enjoyment of nature by using the Jack’s Pond Park and Trail as an interactive window to the San Marcos environment. The Nature Center offers a K-5 curriculum-based science and outdoor education program with hands-on nature study, interpretive hike and more! Jack’s Pond Park is a 23-acre park with picnic areas, a tot lot and Jack’s Pond Nature Center.

The Nature Center is designed to intrigue the minds of all ages. Visitor and community input are valued and will be incorporated into the Center’s projects. We aim to integrate community groups into the ongoing functioning of the Center so that it truly reflects community needs and interests related to environmental stewardship.

Local and outside groups have contributed to the displays at the Nature Center. The Palomar Audubon Society has created a display on birds and their habitats. San Marcos School Science classes have contributed displays and exhibits from their science fairs and other class projects. Cal State University San Marcos student science teachers designed learning stations with the help of local high school students. The most recent contribution comes from a local Eagle Scout who designed and installed our Ocean-themed room.

Local and outside groups have contributed to the displays at the Nature Center. The Palomar Audubon Society, San Marcos School Science classes, Cal State University San Marcos student science teachers, local high school students and Eagle Scouts have made significant contributions to what you can see when you visit today.

Jack’s Pond Nature Center’s Mission Statement:

To provide information about local habitats, plants, animals, geology, and cultural history in educational and enjoyable ways.

Private Reservations

Private reservations can be made by phone (760) 744-9000 ext. 3508 or email.
Schools: We offer a 2-hour curriculum-based program for grades K-5. Each visit includes a nature walk exploring the native flora and fauna, a take-home craft and private Nature Center time.
We also offer private group reservation and scout programs. Please contact us for more information.


San Marcos Residents Non-Residents

$2.00/person(Schools in SMUSD. Non-profits)
$3.00/person (Private Groups)
$2.50/person (Schools. Non-Profits)
$3.50/person (Private Groups)

Can’t come to us? We can come to you! Bring the Nature Center to your classroom with our brand new Nature to You program


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