About Ramona

Guy-Woodward-MuseumThe Charming Community of Ramona is located 36 miles northeast of San Diego in the foothills of the Cuyamaca Mountains at an elevation of 1400 feet.

Known as Valley of the Sun since its early beginnings, Ramona continues to conjure up warm thoughts of enchantment. The original founders, one of the many tribes of American Indians, first referred to the area as The Big Valley. Later, Mexican inhabitants changed the name to Valley De Pamo Santa Maria, meaning – – Warm Valley of St. Mary. Around 1875, settlers shortened the name to Santa Maria Valley.

At about this time a town, called Nuevo – – Spanish for “new”, began to develop in the middle of the valley. In 1884, land speculator Milton Santee purchased 7000 acres in the Valley, and added romance to the existing charm of the area by changing the name of the town to Ramona, after a lovely Indian maiden featured in the book Ramona, written by Helen Hunt Jackson. The famous Ramona Pageant, performed annually in Hemet, CA recounts the romantic tale of Ramona.

Downtown-RamonaToday, more than one hundred years later, Ramona is still a town of warmth and romance. Early western culture can be experienced by visiting the Verlaque House, the only western adobe home of French Provincial design still in existence. Verlaque House, site of the Guy B. Woodward Museum, is located in a complex of historic buildings offering shops, exhibits, artifacts, and a research library about the local area.

We extend to you an invitation to experience San Diego County’s Best Kept Secret—Ramona!