Bonsall sits along the San Luis Rey River about 12 miles from the coast in the northern part of San Diego County. The area is known for its equestrian lifestyle and rural small town charm. Bonsall is named for a retired Methodist minister who developed the fruit industry in the area.
Bonsall's San Luis Rey Downs Thoroughbred Training Center is the only auxiliary training track approved by the California Horse Racing Board. Horses can train here and then run on local tracks without having to arrive 24 hours ahead of the race. The facility includes a one-mile track and a training track. There are 500 stalls, a large equine pool, arena, stationary training gate, tack/shop and other amenities. Five Kentucky Derby winners have trained here as well as numerous other stakes winners. The facility also includes a trail system that helps trainers vary their horses workouts.
With easy access to I-15, Bonsall is located twelve (12) miles from the Pacific Ocean on Highway 76 and situated along the beautiful San Luis Rey River on approximately 32 square miles. With a population of only 10,000 people, its rural, equestrian, small town charm, cool summers and mild winters have turned many passer-by travelers into full-time residents.
Though a small community the are has a very active chamber of commerce, which was established on December 10, 1990 to advance the general welfare and prosperity of the Bonsall Area so that its citizens and all areas of its business community could prosper.