San Diego

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World famous Mission Beach, San Diego with the Pacific Ocean on one side and Mission Bay on the other side

San Diego is a major city in California, on the coast of the Pacific Ocean in Southern California, approximately 120 miles (190 km) south of Los Angeles and immediately adjacent to the border with Mexico. San Diego is the eighth largest city in the United States and second largest in California and is one of the fastest growing cities in the nation. San Diego is the birthplace of California and is known for its mild year-round climate, natural deep-water harbor, extensive beaches, long association with the U.S. Navy, and recent emergence as a healthcare and biotechnology development center. The population was estimated to be 1,322,553 as of 2012. The greater metro San Diego area is estimated to be 3,177,000.

Historically home to the Kumeyaay people, San Diego was the first site visited by Europeans on what is now the West Coast of the United States. Upon landing in San Diego Bay in 1542, Juan Cabrillo claimed the entire area for Spain, forming the basis for the settlement of Alta California 200 years later. The Presidio and Mission of San Diego, founded in 1769, formed the first European settlement in what is now California. In 1821, San Diego became part of newly independent Mexico, and in 1850, became part of the United States following the Mexican-American War and the admission of California to the union.

The city is the seat of San Diego County and is the economic center of the region as well as the San Diego–Tijuana metropolitan area. San Diego's main economic engines are military and defense-related activities, tourism, international trade, and manufacturing. The presence of the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), with the affiliated UCSD Medical Center, has helped make the area a center of research in biotechnology.

A study completed in 2012 listed San Diego as the number 2 "most Buddhist city" in America. Most and least Buddhist cities in America

The beaches and weather of San Diego have become world famous, being one of the best weather places in the world. See:

Buddhist Centers in San Diego

Metta Forest Monastery

  • (Wat Mettavanaram) is a Theravada Buddhist monastery in Valley Center, California.
  • The abbot is Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Deer Park Monastery

Sunnataram California Meditation Monastery

  • Escondido, CA

Dharma Bum Center

  • Address: 541 Second Avenue Suite A San Diego CA 92101
  • Tradition: Non Sectarian
  • Phone: 858.922.8811
  • Website:

Manzanita Village

  • Address: P.O. Box 67, Warner Springs, San Diego, CA 92086
  • Tradition: Mixed Vipassana, Zen, Social Justice, Engaged Buddhism
  • Affiliation: Thich Nhat Hanh
  • Website:
  • Teachers: Michele Benzamin-Miki, Caitriona Reed
  • Spiritual Director: Caitriona Reed

San Diego Buddhist Military Fellowship

  • Address: 3670 Surface Navy Blvd. Bldg. 330 San Diego CA
  • Tradition: Non Sectarian, This is a informal fellowship for American Buddhists of any tradition currently serving in the US Armed Forces in San Diego/Miramar areas.
  • Main Contact: Chaplain Jeanette Shin (Phone: 619 221 9268)

Sunyataram California

  • Address: 9560 West Lilac Road, Escondido, CA 92026
  • Tradition: Theravada, Thai

The Lotus Institute

  • Address: 237 West I Street Encinitas CA 92024
  • Tradition: Zen Buddhist Master Thich Nhat Hanh
  • Phone: 760 230 1203
  • Website:
  • Contact: Peggy Rowe or Larry Ward

The Red Lotus Society

  • Address: 540 3rd Avenue San Diego CA 92101
  • Tradition: Non sectarian
  • Affiliation: Matrix Mandala Garden :
  • Phone: 858 922 8811
  • Website:
  • Main Contact: Jeff Zlotnik (Phone: 858 922 8811)

North County Coastal San Diego

  • Phone: (858) 509 2800

San Diego Meditation Society

  • Phone: (619) 225 0817

Thursday night sit

  • Phone: (619) 543 0064

Wat Buddhajakramongkolratanaram

  • Address: 139 West 11th Avenue, Escondido, CA 92025
  • Tradition: Theravada, Thai
  • Phone: (619) 738 6165

Wat Sovannkiry

  • (Cambodian)
  • San Diego, CA

Wat Lao Navaram Buddhist Monastery

  • Address: 6691 Manning Street, San Diego, CA 92111
  • Tradition: Theravada, Laotian
  • Affiliation: Lao Buddhist monks in the USA
  • Phone: (619) 560 1185
  • Contact: Ajahn Benton Pandito

Buddhist Center San Diego

  • Address: 2823 Curie Place San Diego CA 92122
  • Tradition: Vajrayana, Tibetan, Karma Kagyu
  • Affiliation: Diamond Way Buddhism

Buddhist Temple of San Diego

  • Address: 2929 Market Street San Diego CA 92102
  • Tradition: Mahayana, Jodo Shinshu Buddhism
  • Affiliation: Buddhist Churches of America (BCA)

Dzogchen Shri Singha of San Diego

  • Address: 4115 3rd Ave San Diego CA 92103
  • Tradition: Vajrayana, Tibetan, Dzogchen
  • Affiliation: Dzogchen Shri Singha Intertnational Organization
  • Phone: (760) 815 6025

Hsi Fang Temple San Diego Buddhist Association

  • Address: 4536 Park Blvd San Diego CA 92116
  • Tradition: Mahayana, Humanistic Buddhism
  • Affiliation: Fo Guang Shan
  • Phone: (619) 298-2800, (619) 299-5360
  • Fax: (619) 298 4205

San Diego Shambhala Meditation Group

  • Address: 4060 Adams Ave San Diego CA 92116
  • Tradition: Vajrayana, Tibetan, Kagyü lineage
  • Phone: (619) 692 2148

Sweetwater Zen Center

  • Address: 2727 Highland Avenue National City CA San Diego CA 91950
  • Tradition: Mahayana, Soto Zen, Maezumi Roshi
  • Affiliation: White Plum Sangha
  • Phone: (619) 477 0390

Center for American Buddhist Practice

  • Hillcrest neighborhood, San Diego

Buddha For You

  • San Diego, CA

Vista Zen Center

  • Vista, CA

Three Treasures Zen Community

  • Rancho Peñasquitos, CA

Hidden Valley Zen Center

  • San Marcos, CA

All People's World Beat Sangha

  • 2100 Park Blvd., Balboa Park, San Diego, CA, 92101, USA (2nd & 4th Sun. 5-7pm)

Heart Beat Sangha (People of Color)

  • Balboa Park, San Diego, CA

Open Heart Sangha

  • 4190 Front Street, San Diego, 92103, USA (every Sun. 4-6pm)

Peaceful Shores Sangha

  • 9595 La Jolla Shores Dr, directly off Torrey Pines Rd and across the road from UCSD., San Diego, CA, 92037, USA (every Fri. 6:30pm)

Compassionate Heart Sangha

  • Encinitas, CA, USA (every Sat. 11am-12:30pm)

Palomitas de Paz Sangha

  • 1600 Buena Vista Drive, Vista, CA, 92081 (every Sat. 9-10am)

Really Beneficial Sangha

  • Rancho Bernardo/Escondido, CA (every Wed. 7:30-9pm)

Still Ripening Sangha (Order of Interbeing)

  • 2499 Melru Lane, Escondido, CA

UU Meditation Circle

  • Vipassana
  • First Unitarian Universalist Church
  • San Diego, CA

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of San Dieguito

  • Vipassana
  • Solana Beach, CA

Vista Buddhist Temple

  • Shin Buddhism
  • Vista, CA

Vajrarupini Buddhist Center

  • Tibetan, New Kadampa Tradition
  • Hillcrest neighborhood, San Diego, CA

Diamond Way Buddhist Center

  • Tibetan, Karma Kagyu tradition
  • University City, CA

Tibetan Healing Center, Dzogchen Shri Singha of San Diego, Tsegyalgar West

  • San Diego, CA

Karma Thegsum Chöling (San Diego) Buddhist Meditation Center

  • Tibetan Buddhism
  • San Diego, CA

San Diego Rigpa

  • San Diego, CA

Drikung Kyobpa Choling

  • Escondido, CA

Zen Center of San Diego

  • Pacific Beach, San Diego, CA

San Diego Buddhist Association

  • University Heights
  • 4536 Park Blvd
  • San Diego, CA 92116
  • Phone number (619) 298 2800


  • Kearny Mesa
  • 4828 Ronson Ct
  • San Diego, CA 92111
  • Phone number (858) 514 3870

Phat Da Buddhist Congregation

  • University Heights
  • 4333 30th Street
  • San Diego, CA 92104
  • Phone number (619) 283 7655


  • San Diego, CA
  • Phone number (858) 414 8513

Indo Chinese Buddhist Association

  • City Heights
  • 4538 University Ave
  • San Diego, CA 92105
  • Phone number (619) 521 1818

Tatte Ka Dhaba

  • Downtown
  • Gali No 5
  • San Diego, CA 92101

Rigpa San Diego

  • East Village
  • 710 13th St
  • San Diego, CA 92101
  • Phone number (619) 906 4291

San Diego Shambhala Meditation Center

  • North Park
  • 3139 University Ave
  • San Diego, CA 92104
  • Phone number (619) 692 2148

Cambodian Buddhist Society of San Diego

  • City Heights
  • 3606 47th St
  • San Diego, CA 92105
  • Phone number (619) 269 3659

The Glory Hall

  • La Mesa
  • 4060 Rosarita Dr
  • La Mesa, CA 91941

Eyes of Buddha

  • 4247 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA

Dharma Center

  • 5059 Newport Ave #303, San Diego, CA

Wat Khemara Ratanaram

  • 3606 47th Street, 3606 47th St, San Diego, CA

Wat Lao Boubpharam-San Diego

  • 205 S 65th St, San Diego, CA ‎

Như Lai Thiền Tự

  • 3340-3342 Central Ave, San Diego, CA

Chùa Vạn Hạnh

  • 8617 Fanita Dr, Santee, CA

Vietnamese Buddhist Association in San Diego

  • Santee, CA

Practice Mindfulness in Meditation and in Life, Plus Loving-Kindness

Modern Meditation of San Diego

63 Dhamma / Dharma centers in San Diego, California.

City of Dhamma

San Diego is home to 63 Dhamma / Dharma Centers, for a population of 3.2 million works out to one Dhamma center for every 50,000 people, a very high ratio of Dhamma centers, compared to the average, in a non-Buddhist country.

There are also numerous Yoga studios, shops that sell Buddha statues and Thangkas and vegetarian or vegetarian and vegan friendly restaurants located throughout the city of San Diego and surrounding suburbs.