Butterfly Farms (North San Diego)

Caterpillar on a leafButterfly Farms

If you are looking to big smiles, just drive 20 minutes north of San Diego to the coastal town of Encinitas. At Butterfly Farms, whether you are 2 years old or 102 years old watching the butterflies flitter and flutter  simply brings you joy. You’ll find that even the youngest of kids will have an impressive attention span while watching the butterflies. You’ll get some great photos of them no matter what their age.

The owners of Butterfly Farms have been growing plants and shipping butterfly friendly plants around the country for the last 7 years. Two organizations, Fish and Wildlife and Monarch Watch, rely heavily on them for the work they do.

Plants and Tours

If you want butterflies in your own yard, you can also purchase plants. If you are lucky enough to be on a tour, you’ll get quite an education in the building above the vivarium.  I thought I knew a lot already but after 30 min there I realized there was so much more to learn. If you’re going to be around for a few weeks or months, you might even consider becoming a volunteer. (They need help catching butterflies, caterpillars and with the plants)

My daughter with a butterfly that landed on her at Butterfly Farms
My Daughter at Butterfly Farms

The Butterfly garden is located in old Paul Ecke Ranch. On the same property you’ll also find a farm stand by Coastal Roots Farms. They have a vegetable garden (grown sustainability without pesticides, herbicides, etc.), a vineyard and a Food Forest. More about Coast Roots Farm on my blog post and a podcast).

Nearby Things to Do

Only a few miles away at the beach (still in Encinitas). One of my favorites in San Diego county is Moonlight Beach which has an awesome playground right next to the beach for the kids. Great surfing and just down the street you’ll find a lot of great restaurants and coffee shops.

A butterfly rests on the flowers in the 3000 sq foot enclosure. Podcast

Listen to the podcast here for more information on Butterfly Farms (ADD PODCAST HERE)





Phone: (760) 613-5867

441 Saxony Road, Encinitas, CA 92024

Hours: Open in Encinitas daily from 10:00am-4:00pm.

Membership: If you buy a membership, you’ll get:

  • Annual members receive FREE admission to 300+ botanical gardens through our partnership with the American Horticultural Society
  • * 2 Free Admission passes (Individual/Student/Military), 5 Free Admission passes (Family/Dual)
  • * Subscription to Butterfly Chronicles quarterly newsletter
  • * Discount on merchandise (10%)
  • * Discount on host & nectar plants (10%)
  • * Invitations to Members-only special events
  • * Invitation to orientation events for new members
  • * Advanced notice & reduced fees for Garden classes
  • * Free or reduced admission to special events
  • * Butterfly Farms window decal
  • * Opportunity to become farm volunteer

So if you buy a membership and you get in to the San Diego Botanical Garden which is right next door and memberships to so many more places.

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