The Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Department will update plans as needed based on additional direction from public health officials. Visit the city website homepage for City COVID-19 updates and information.  


All Encinitas parks remain open for passive use such as walking or running.

Per San Diego County Health Order, all City of Encinitas park parking lots are temporarily closed.

Active recreation areas in all parks are temporarily closed. Activities which require hand contact with surfaces such as entrance gates and children’s play equipment, as well as balls used to play sports have a high potential to spread the virus. Also, social distancing in these areas is difficult to achieve.

The following active areas are closed:

  • All Fields & Courts (tennis, pickleball, basketball, and volleyball courts)
  • Playgrounds
  • Maggie Houlihan Memorial Dog Park
  • Little Oaks Equestrian Arena
  • Skate Parks/Features


Moonlight Beach is open for limited use, including walking, running, and all water activities except for boating.  Per San Diego County Health Order, parking lots will remain closed.

The San Diego County Public Health Order to stay at home is still in effect. People may visit Encinitas beaches for solitary workouts. When you are on the beach, you must keep moving by walking or running. Please maintain a physical distance of six feet, do not gather in groups, and please go home once you are done exercising.  You may swim, surf, paddle board and kayak (1 person) when in the water.

Click here for details about Encinitas beach use guidelines


All Encinitas trails, except for Manchester Preserve are open.  Please exercise caution and social distancing while enjoying open trails in Encinitas.

The Center for Natural Lands Management has temporarily closed the Manchester Preserve. The trails and trail heads have been overcrowded and users are not maintaining social distancing requirements or staying on designated trails.  Trail users have dogs off leash and are damaging native habitat that the preserve was established to protect. The City maintains trails that run through the preserve but does not manage the preserve or own the land.  The City has public access easements for our recreational trails.  This is a temporary closure and the situation will be re-evaluated as needed.  Click here for more information about Manchester Preserve.


In consideration of the health of its customers, the City of Encinitas Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Department is actively taking steps to control the spread of the Coronavirus while still providing services to the community.  The Department will update plans as needed based on additional direction from public health officials.

As a result, many previously scheduled City programs and events are postponed, cancelled, or modified in accordance with County Health Order and recommendations.  Additionally, the Encinitas Community and Senior Center is closed until further notice. 

The City recognizes the importance for recreation in the community and is proud to offer online programming for children, adults and seniors.  Quality instructors are excited to teach online classes such as Mad Science, Cooking, Soccer, T’ai Chi Chih, Line Dancing, and even skateboarding, all virtually, online.  Also on the Department’s Virtual Recreation Center webpage, you’ll find a listing of Senior Assistance resources and links to online activities for various ages including fitness, fun and educational activities.

Department Summary

The Parks and Recreation Department is responsible for a wide range of services for the City including recreation programs, city-wide special events (Holiday Parade, Spring Egg Hunt, Movies in the Park, Summer Concerts and Moonlight Beach Bash), park, beach and recreational trail maintenance, management of open space, streetscape maintenance, animal services, and oversight of the administration of the Encinitas Ranch Golf Authority.

The Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Department includes the following Divisions:

Administrative Services

The Administrative Division is responsible for directing and supervising all divisions of the department and providing a variety of administrative services, including leases and operating agreements, contract management, grant procurement and administration, design of capital projects, advanced park and facility planning, budgeting, financial planning, special project management, concession management, program registration, special permits, and oversight of the administration of the Encinitas Ranch Golf Authority and animal services contracts. In addition, this division provides administration of the Encinitas Sister City program and support for the Youth, Senior, Arts, and Parks and Recreation Commissions.

Cultural Arts

Arts Administration manages the City's Civic Arts Program and Public Art Program, administers the City of Encinitas and Mizel Family Foundation Community Grant Program, supports arts education, conducts research and grant writing, and provides information and assistance to artists and arts and community organizations.

Parks, Beaches and Trails

The Parks, Beaches and Trails Division is responsible for the maintenance and repair of all park, beach and trail facilities, including 10 miles of streetscapes, 82 acres of open space, 153 acres of both developed and undeveloped parks, 45 acres of beaches, and 40 miles of trails.


The Recreation Services Division is responsible for planning and administering recreation services for youth, teens, adults, and senior citizens. The benefits of these services are endless, including mental and physical well-being, family unity, positive self-esteem, socialization, fun/challenging experiences, and an enhanced quality of life. The Recreation Division also provides a variety of recreational, educational, and sports activities to the public; many of these operate on a fee-for-use basis to subsidize program costs.  The Recreation Division also operates the 39,000 square foot Encinitas Community & Senior Center.