Calico Ghost Town
Calico Ghost Town
3.5
About
Visitors from around the world come to Calico each year to experience a real ghost town originally settled in the 1880s.A hive of activity for the adventurous at heart - the park hosts the Mystery Shack- a crooked house where water runs uphill, two museums, narrow-gauge train rides and gold panning.Calico was founded during California’s largest silver strike. The town thrived for 12 years, until the price of silver plunged and mining operations ceased. By 1907, residents had moved away, leaving Calico to the tumbleweeds and spirits.Amenities include group and RV camping, mountain bike trails and off-road vehicle areas, fourteen shops, three restaurants, cabins and bunkhouses. Special events are held year-round, including Civil War re-enactments in February, Spring Festival featuring Americana music, the Calico Days Festival when the town’s rich mining history is celebrated with a burro race, miner’s triathlon, music and more, and let’s not overlook the ever-popular Halloween Ghost Haunt in October. The desert park is just a few miles north of Barstow, and minutes offInterstate 15. Calico Ghost Town is a great place to get a bite to eat and do a little shopping if you’re traveling between Los Angeles and Las Vegas.
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  • Colm N
    Crawley, United Kingdom224 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A diverting little detour
    This is a diverting little detour. The history of the town is interesting (on various displays) and the tour of the actual mine is also good (extra fee to pay). There is a nice little rest stop and shops selling pricey trinkets. We went early and there was no admission charge but I think I'd balk at paying $8 to wander around. The day we went the temperature was about 42 degrees so that blunted the enjoyment a little.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 27 July 2023
  • WizardDad
    Wollongong, Australia245 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Average stop
    A quirky little stop on the drive East. Must be hard to keep the place running in the hot dry environment so I don't begrudge the small fee they charge. It was nicely themed and well laid out although I did miss a couple of things out of the way. The exhibits were decent and it had a nice casual atmosphere. Really have a look at the pictures and website to work out if it is worth a visit for you, I'm glad I went but wouldn't be going back. The performances tended to be amateur, although I missed the train shootout. The displays like the mines are decent, there's some interesting things mixed in amongst the stores and stalls. I was a bit disappointed by the Main Street gunfight, but again not a well resourced production and nor could it be, I'm guessing. While it was an interesting stop, it's not going to be for everyone and was a bit pricy and a lot seemed designed to get you to buy something.
    Visited September 2022
    Written 26 August 2023
  • Betty S
    12 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Calico Ghost Town Yermo CA
    Fun, historic place to visit. Drove down from Las Vegas and it is an easy drive for a day trip. Initially, Calico was packed with tour buses but most of them were leaving when we got there, early afternoon. Rode the train, visited the shops and did the Maggie Mine Tour. Lots of benches where my husband could stop and rest. San Bernadino County Parks does an excellent job of maintaining Calico.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 September 2023
  • Revathi
    San Ramon, California241 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Location and views were amazing!
    There isn't much to explore, but the location and views were amazing. The $8.00 entry fee for adults goes towards the preservation of California's history. In the late 1800s, Calico was a silver mining town with 3,000 residents until the silver prices fell. Walter Knott and his son came to Calico, and they decided to keep it as a tourist spot, like their well-known Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 11 January 2024
  • Sally C
    Lincolnshire, United Kingdom172 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Very good value for the entrance fee
    It was $8 per adult which was reasonable. You could easily spend 2-3 hrs here with the family. Lots of gift shops/toilets & plenty of parking. Staff friendly. Could have done with more staff explaining what some of the displays were or put up signs with the info. Generally just left to wonder around.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 March 2024
  • lwa3
    Mansfield, United Kingdom250 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fantastic find
    Excellent little mining town. It has been so well maintained and it is very cute. The staff are very friendly and we thoroughly loved our time here. We spent about 1.5hrs here and did the train ride for $5.50 and the self guided mine tour for $4.50 each. The entrance fee to walk around is $8 each. It's an absolute steal! So many great photo opportunities. Would recommend a visit to anyone. It is fantastic and very thought provoking. Ignore the negative reviews on here. It almost stopped us from going, so glad it didn't.
    Visited April 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 9 April 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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3.5
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Don B
california58 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
When with kids and grand kids (total of 7 of us) and spent the day here. I recommend going Jan- Apr arriving in the morning, as it can get very hot here later in the year.
The town was restored and expanded by the Knott family (yes as in Knotts berry farm).
They have a fairly large number of buildings representing an old western mining town.
For the kids there are a few rides (train ride is a must) a lot of mining tours and gold mining adventure. A couple of very reasonable places to eat also. It does cost to enter and each ride and tour also charge, but nothing real expensive.
Written 14 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ron McCain
4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2020 • Couples
This is not just a historical 3 hour tour of a ghost town. This is a Great place to make lasting memories, that cannot be beat. Step back in time, and be a Cowboy or Cowgirl, in real time, for all day or longer. Wear your own western wear, hats, boots and spurs, Take some out of this world photos. And get some photos taken from the old time photo store. Yet, don't forget to buy new outfits in their stores, that you'll be sure to turn heads with, whereever you go. The restaurant food is exceptionally good, yet served either 'inside' an aunthentic western dining room that miners ate at for more than a hundred years, or outside, on a covered deck, overlooking the landscape of the mountains that attracted prosectors and made dreams come true. It's the real McCoy that you'll find unforgettable. Buy a wallet or purse from one shop. A shirt or blouse from another. A good hat. Or even an antique. And then, when you leave Calico, and someone sees what you have and ask you, where you got it, you'll be proud to tell them 'Calico'. And at that moment, you'll 'want' to be at Calico, again. And you 'will', whip out your smart phone, and show others, photos of the time, you 'lived' in Calico.
Written 22 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MidnightMochaRun
55 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021
We really enjoyed this Calico Ghost Town! We were fully aware about this being a touristy place, perhaps that helped. I would suggest go there with that mind set. We went there fairly close to closing time, I think maybe an hour before. This was enough time for us and we saw a beautiful sunset as we were leaving.

All the main attractions cost extra inside. The only one we did was the Mystery Shack, it was $4 a person. It was really neat, you walk through an area that makes you feel like gravity is all messed up. The tour guide was friendly and funny.

There are plenty of giftshops to purchase souvenirs. There was also a restroom. The town set up is great. Lots of opportunity to take photos. The best thing about Calico Ghost town to us was the views. Some of the overlooks were just absolutely stunning.
Written 3 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gary M
Sydney, Australia275 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Friends
Calico is an old West mining town that has been around since 1881 and was abandoned in the mid-1890s after silver lost its value. The town that once gave miners a good living lost its hustle and became a “ghost town.”

Walter Knott purchased Calico in the 1950’s architecturally restoring all but the five original buildings to look as they did in the 1880’s. 

The town is pretty massive, and my favourite part about it is the mountain behind that shows the name of the city, it is excellent for framing pictures of the old unique buildings.

The town is a great representation of what life in the time period was like.

Well worth a visit, especially if you have a young family.
Written 25 June 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Zephyr2380
Philadelphia5 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2021
First off, Calico Ghost Town IS NOT A REAL GHOST TOWN!!! It is a cheesy tourist attraction built on the site of an 1880s mining town. Most of the buildings are old but they have been relocated from other sites in an attempt to "recreate" the original town, much of which burned in a fire. There is an $8 per person admission fee and additional fees for their "attractions" such as a mini-train ride, mystery tours, a silver-mine tour. While the buildings are old they are filled with cheesy tourist stuff. Don't waste your time here if you're expecting to see a real old mining town from the 1880s.
Written 2 December 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Revathi
San Ramon, CA241 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Family
There isn't much to explore, but the location and views were amazing. The $8.00 entry fee for adults goes towards the preservation of California's history. In the late 1800s, Calico was a silver mining town with 3,000 residents until the silver prices fell. Walter Knott and his son came to Calico, and they decided to keep it as a tourist spot, like their well-known Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California.
Written 11 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sin Aguayo
San Bernardino, CA311 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020 • Family
$20 to get into the Calico town parking area. The last residents of this town left in the year 2000. It is hard to imagine that. Many of the old buildings have been restored but there are sections that still retain the original build. A cemetery can also be visited, however respect is asked as real citizens of the town are buried there. Amazing history and a great experience. It certainly feels like you are going back in time. Filled with shops and activities, it is a good pit stop of you are going to Vegas or coming back from it and is not very far from the freeway. As you get closer, you will run up on some abandoned torn down houses, which gives you a eerie feeling as you approach the entrance. Once you make it inside, the town is full of life actually. Due to COVID not all activities are available but you can still walk around and discover what this town is all about. This is a great outdoor museum for the whole family. Quick fact, the person who bought and restored this town is the same person that restored Knotts Berry Farm. Follow me and my adventures fb Sin Aguayo ig: @sin_aguayo
Written 29 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

lwa3
Mansfield, UK250 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Family
Excellent little mining town. It has been so well maintained and it is very cute. The staff are very friendly and we thoroughly loved our time here. We spent about 1.5hrs here and did the train ride for $5.50 and the self guided mine tour for $4.50 each. The entrance fee to walk around is $8 each. It's an absolute steal! So many great photo opportunities. Would recommend a visit to anyone. It is fantastic and very thought provoking. Ignore the negative reviews on here. It almost stopped us from going, so glad it didn't.
Written 9 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Simon W
5 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Couples
"your card was declined" said the cashier with an extremely unpleasant and condescending tone.
As I explained to her that she just need to insert it or wireless contact, she gave me the same look and repeated the same thing forcing me to leave very angry and upset.
THIS IS MY EXPERIENCE OF CALICO

Give yourself a favor and go to oatman instead. At least, the mules are nicer than this woman there.

Spoiler alert : my credit card worked perfectly

En français :
"votre carte de crédit à été rejeté" voici ce que m'a dit la caissière à l'entrée. Je lui répète qu'il faut l'insérer ou sans contact, elle ne m'écoute pas et me parle avec un air tellement condescendant.. Je suis tellement énervé que je quitte les lieux.

Rendez-vous service et allez plutôt à Oatman. C'est gratuit et les mules sont plus gentils que cette dame.
Written 19 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Colm N
Crawley, UK224 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Family
This is a diverting little detour. The history of the town is interesting (on various displays) and the tour of the actual mine is also good (extra fee to pay). There is a nice little rest stop and shops selling pricey trinkets. We went early and there was no admission charge but I think I'd balk at paying $8 to wander around. The day we went the temperature was about 42 degrees so that blunted the enjoyment a little.
Written 27 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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