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Pala City Overview

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The small village of Pala is situated at the intersection of Highway 76 and S16 (Pala Road) that heads into Temecula. Pala is about 4 miles east of I-15 in northeast San Diego County; the small village of Pauma Valley sits about 7 miles east of Pala, near the South Grade Road to Palomar Mountain.

Pala is the gateway to the rich agricultural area in the valleys east of I-15. Miles of citrus trees and avocado groves line Highway 76 just east of Pala. The area is also home to the Pala Indian Reservation and the Pala Resort and Casino, a recently completed 507-room complex with six restaurants, a spa and big-name entertainment. The casino includes 2,000 slot machines and 50 Vegas-style tables, and is run by the Pala Indians.

The Pala Reservation is also home to the Pala mission founded in 1816, and is the last remaining California mission still in operation as was first established. The adobe chapel that has since served the Indians at this beautiful spot is highlighted by a stand-alone bell tower, which stands out as the singularly most unique feature of Franciscan mission architecture in all California has been more admired. A museum containing many of the original fittings of the church as well as other artifacts, is situated on the grounds, along with a gift shop.

Real estate offerings are somewhat limited in this small village. Current homes for sale range upwards of $3.7 mill on the market, sitting on several acres. A variety of raw acreage is also for sale.

Pala is also noted for its gem mines, where pink tourmaline is mined. Gem quality natural pink tourmaline is five times as rare as gem diamond and more than ten times as valuable as gold in its pure form. One large specimen from the mine is on view at the Smithsonian. The mine is not open to the public.