The Retreat

The Children’s Nature Retreat is located on 20 acres of stunning terrain approximately 40 minutes outside San Diego.


We strongly believe in the ethical treatment of animals and we are extremely passionate about the well-being of our furry friends!


The retreat is specifically designed to help children develop a sense of wonder for nature and its inhabitants.

Wellness Center

Our luxury, private oasis overlooking the Retreat offers deluxe packages that will suit your next seminar or exclusive event.

Thank you so much for that experience!

“I just wanted to thank you for the great time that Laina had meeting you and visiting your nature retreat last Friday.  I think it really was the first time that Laina smiled and even giggled at a zoo or wild animal park.  We have visited many parks and most of the time the animals are so hidden or there are usually children standing in front of her wheelchair to even see anything.  She actually got to see the animals this time and smiled when they started to walk up to the fence! It made me so happy to see her smile. I am sure her caregiver and/or I will make sure Laina comes to visit once a month.”

-Sandy R.









Our Vision

In our increasingly digital-dependent and urbanized world, we are loosing touch with nature.

With this in mind, we believe the Children’s Nature Retreat offers a rich connection to the earth, its plants and animals.

We allow guests to step away from their fast pace life, reduce stress levels and find their balance in nature.

Our Blog

At the Retreat

Cheyenne says, “Happy Monday!” Isn’t his view amazing? Tag a friend who needs some Monday cheer!

#animalsanctuary #animalrescue #rescueanimals #rescuesofinstagram #alpineca #sandiego #childrensnatureretreat

Pumpkin, our Yorkshire pig who came from a rescue that closed down, is testing his underwater skills!

When you visit the Retreat, don’t forget to say “Hi” to Pumpkin and Spice (his sister) 🥰

#yorkshirepig #animalsanctuary #animalsanctuarylife #happypig #pig #childrensnatureretreat #sandiego #wallows

Do you know why the Retreat has an African section?

#africa #africananimals #africanpreschool #childrensnatureretreat #animalsanctuary #africanchildren #education #sandiego #thingstodoinsandiego

Pssst . . . can you guess our secret?

Our founder, Agnes, wasn’t always our executive director! In another life, she was co-founder of an Internet company. But she’s always had a heart for animals and for fostering connections with them.

Today, she shares some of her heart behind our organization.

I truly believe in magic. I think there’s something wonderful that happens when we interact with animals and nature. It relaxes us, makes us present. I get such joy out of watching visitors feed our animals - there’s just a feeling of instant joy and excitement. It’s why I do what I do.

Who needs an encouraging story? Tag them below!

#animalsanctuary #alpineca #sandiego #animalrescue #summertravel #ourstaff #childrensnatureretreat

Are you on the move this summer?

Know anyone traveling from Arizona in the next few weeks? We know a great pit-stop!

Come stretch your legs and watch the magic happen as you and your family experience restoration and joy in our animal sanctuary.

We can’t wait to see you!

Who’s traveling route 8 this summer? Tag someone in the comments below!

#animalsanctuary #alpineca #sandiego #animalrescue #summertravel #summervacation #childrensnatureretreat

Spend the morning or the afternoon at the Retreat, play on the logs, love on the animals, explore, giggle and enjoy a great time!

#happyday #purejoy #destress #quiettime #animalsanctuary #childrensnatureretreat #childrensatplay #childrenandnature

“My family and I loved it! Our favorite was Burkina. She was so sweet and followed us around from her enclosure. Also, we met the owner Agnes. She was super nice and chatted with us about the animals.”
Cindy U., El Cajon, CA
“The children’s nature retreat-is not just for children. it is a magical place where one is reminded how powerful nature is-the animals and the park like setting restore a sense of awe and wonder to all of its visitors-including the grown ups.”
Eileen L., San Diego, CA

“This was a very fun getaway! Close to home yet far enough you feel out of the city. The grounds are maintained very well and all of the staff are very friendly l. I can’t wait to go back.”

Amber N., Tucson, AZ

“The serene setting east of San Diego where the Children’s Nature Retreat resides is a must see for everyone who lives or visits the San Diego area. Rescued animals are cared for in a beautiful setting where children and adults alike can enjoy close up encounters with one another. Agnes does an amazing job of not only caring for the animals, but also her dedicated staff who do a wonderful job of making sure your visit is a memorable experience. There are indoor and outdoor options for organizations looking for a retreat center to focus on their work ahead. All said, our school staff had a wonderful day of planning and preparing at the Children’s Nature Center and we look forward to a return visit this fall.”

Tim Bagby, Principal

“We were very fortunate this year to have our team building professional development in August for all of the staff at Americas Finest Charter School. We had over 80 staff attend and visit the Children’s Nature Retreat. They were able to see all of the animals and plan in their grade level and subject area groups for the coming year. Agnes prived snacks and a wonderful BBQ lunch for all. At lunchtime, the staff was able to have a hands-on animal visit or swim in the pool. The staff wants to return next year.”

Jan Perry, Executive Director


Children's Nature Retreat Foundation would like to thank our sponsors and partners!

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