Rowland Heights is an unincorporated community on the aprons of the Puente Hills chain in the San Gabriel Valley of southeastern Los Angeles County.
Rowland Heights’ agricultural character began shifting to urban around the 1970s after constructing the 60 Freeway north of the community.
The new freeway drove residential developments and the construction of strip malls in Rowland Heights.
Moreover, the ripple effects of this urbanization helped create many points of interest that now draw plenty of visitors to Rowland Heights.
From the following list of the best things to do in Rowland Heights, California, you’ll see how it has become an enjoyable place to visit.
Our aim is not just to guide you to popular places but to encourage you to venture out and experience the city for yourself.
Enjoy the Outdoors at the Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park
With its area of 575 acres, the Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park on East Colima Road offers plenty of recreational outdoor activities to locals and visitors of Rowland Heights.
Seventy-five acres of the park have been developed with facilities for sports, such as soccer and tennis.
This developed acreage in the Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park also features areas for fitness exercises and youth camping.
The park’s remaining areas have been preserved in their natural state and set with a 2.3-mile loop trail network for hiking, biking, and horse riding.
Additionally, the Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park also delights visitors with its hundreds of cherry blossom trees donated by a sister park in Japan in 1992.
Visit the Pathfinder Community Regional Park
The 29-acre Pathfinder Community Regional Park is one of the most visited attractions in Rowland Heights.
The scenic mountain views this park on Pathfinder Road offers are one of its magnets to visitors.
Moreover, the recreational facilities in the Pathfinder Community Regional Park include a playground and splash pads open daily from May to September.
You can also visit the baseball diamond, home to the Rowlands Heights/Puente Hills Little League.
Major local events, like food festivals, are regularly hosted in the Rowland Heights Community Center on the east side of this park.
Pick a Ball Game at the Rowland Heights Park
Rowland Heights Park is located on South Banida Avenue, a small park spanning 11 acres.
Nonetheless, it is well-designed and accommodates several sports facilities suited for children and adults.
Rowland Heights Park, a charming residential neighborhood, features two tennis courts and outdoor basketball courts.
Kids visiting this park can have fun on its playground, while fitness buffs can try its monkey gyms.
Regular annual community events are also hosted in the community center of this park.
Have a Picnic at Trailview Park
Trailview Park is located on Saleroso Drive and traversed by the extensive trail network of the Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park.
Although just an acre, this park has become popular since it opened in 1987.
Its popularity owes much to its quaint location on a quiet hillside with an iconic, large rock.
This feature has become the endearing landmark for Trailview Park, which offers picnic facilities, including group shelters.
This park's remarkable natural surroundings and wondrous views make it a family favorite.
Tour the Little Parrot Farm
The Little Parrot Farm on Desire Avenue in the center of Rowland Heights offers a tour showing how it operates “in harmony with nature.”
During this hour-long tour, the farm demonstrates its sustainable agriculture practices.
Little Parrot Farm’s tour will take you to its flower and harmony gardens, with unique plants and veggies.
Familiarize yourself with bee pollinators and the composters that enrich the farm’s soil.
The farm’s showcase likewise includes a petting zoo housing several rescued animals.
Enjoy the Buckboard Days Parade and Festival
The Buckboard Days Parade and Festival began in 1971 as a three-day festival showcasing the strong community spirit in Rowland Heights.
The Rowland Heights Women’s Club launched it initially as a fundraiser for its charitable projects in the community.
Over the years, the Buckboard Days Parade became popular and attracted participants from neighboring Los Angeles communities.
The event’s buckboard theme interestingly recalls the clever device Rowland locals installed on their wagons for a smoother ride during the community’s early days.
Moreover, the Buckboard Parade and Festival is traditionally held on the third Saturday of October, with awards given to outstanding participants.
Led by a Grand Marshal chosen annually, the parade includes school marching bands, vintage wagons and carriages, community and club floats, and antique cars.
The parade winds through Rowland Heights’ main streets, Colima, Nogales, and Banida, where it winds up at Rowland Heights Park.
Then, the event’s festivities continue at this park, where some 50 booths offer food, crafts, and musical entertainment.
Bond with the Family at Kasey Acres Equestrian
Enjoy exclusive family fun at Kasey Acres Equestrian.
Its unique, family-friendly facilities on Desire Avenue are for private bookings and are not open to the general public.
Its location in central Rowland Heights has a woody and secluded ambiance appropriate for family bonding.
Kasey Acres Equestrian provides its guests with the experience of cowboy living right in the heart of Los Angeles.
In this private venue, you can enjoy horse riding, wagon rides, and campfires in the evening.
At its spacious grounds, you can also try archery on horseback while your kids have fun at the Kasey Acres Equestrian petting zoo.
Do a Sherlock at Escape Duck
Escape Duck offers three game options in its riddle-locked escape rooms on Colima Road.
Sherlock Holmes, a popular choice in this fun center, challenges you to fill in the shoes of this iconic detective to bolt out in time from an escape room.
Escape Duck offers another crime-solving scenario involving famous composer Ludovico Manin at its Masquerade Ball.
The urgency of escape with a twist on hypnotism is the theme of the Fatal Invitation in the third fun room of Escape Duck.
As a finale to any of these escape rooms, you can join the bonus round called Find Hidden Coins to win free prizes.
Join a Pick-up Game at Carolyn Rosas Park
A well-established Los Angeles County facility, Carolyn Rosas Park is located on Farjardo Street.
Here, you can join or watch pick-up games at the park’s outdoor basketball court or the two baseball fields.
Carolyn Rosas Park is kid-friendly, with its splash pad and well-equipped playground.
The park is also home to the Pounders Wrestling Club, established in 1994.
Other recreational activities in this park include tai chi and hula lessons.
It was formerly the Farjado County Park but was renamed in 1987 in honor of a local community leader and descendant of the Rowland Heights founders.
Grab a Meal at the House of Fortune Vegan Cuisine
The strong influence of the large Asian immigrant population of Rowland Heights shows in restaurants like House of Fortune Vegan Cuisine.
This restaurant runs its flagship vegetarian dining venue on Colima Road, a corridor with plenty of Chinese restaurants.
House of Fortune Vegan Cuisine, which has also been operating in Chino, Los Angeles, since 2018, has several bestsellers on its extensive menu.
One popular pick in this restaurant comes in a clay pot, an eggplant tofu dish soaked in a flavorful brown sauce with jalapeño and basil.
The regular patrons of this restaurant also have an eye for its flavorful mix of vegan shrimp and broccoli stir-fried brown sauce.
Pickled radish pork noodles, veggie orange chicken, and crispy oyster mushrooms are top picks in the House of Fortune Vegan Cuisine menu.
Experience Powder Canyon
Powder Canyon offers many areas for hikers, mountain bikers, and horse riders.
It features a 6.5-mile loop trail network accessible from Fullerton Road on the southwestern edge of Rowland Heights between Harbor Boulevard and East Road.
Moreover, Powder Canyon is a historically significant site that the Puente Hills Habitat Preservation Authority owns.
The canyon is believed to have been a pathway used by Native Americans in pre-Colonial times.
Later, around 1910-1915, the canyon figured in manufacturing a controversial gunpowder substitute, hence its name.
Today visits to Powder Canyon offer the experience of traversing chaparral hills and coastal sagebrush.
Spring is the perfect time to explore the canyon, with its woodland lush and the wildflowers in its grassland more picturesque.
Tee Off at the Royal Vista Golf Club
The Royal Vista Golf Club on Colima Road, east of Rowland Heights, offers a 27-hole layout, promising excellent play for golfers of all skill levels.
The club’s East/North course challenges seasoned players in its par 71 to play over 6,458 yards from its back tees.
Take the North/South layout at par 71 for a tamer round but shorter at 6,210 yards.
Conversely, novices will welcome the par 72 South/East course of Royal Vista Club with its 6,304 yards of play.
Regardless of the course choice, golfers will enjoy the spectacular views blending with the greens and fairways of Royal Vista.
This golf destination opened in 1963 and offers a driving range and a Spanish-style clubhouse with a full-service restaurant.
Taste Asia at the Hong Kong Plaza
The Asian communities in Rowland Heights and neighboring areas troop to the Hong Kong Plaza on East Colima Road to heed their native tastes.
Built in 1961 on a ten-acre parcel, this shopping mall provides 115,000 square feet of commercial space, primarily to tenants catering to the preferences of the Asian palate.
The Hong Kong Plaza, for one, has the supermarket HK2 Food District as its anchor establishment.
Moreover, this supermarket is the locals’ go-to choice for fresh produce, seafood, and meats suited for Asian cuisine.
The restaurants in Hong Kong Plaza are also famous for their Asian menu, especially those at Tofu House, Golden Noodle, Jin Ju’s, and Hibachi Grill Buffet.
Other Things to Do Nearby
Visit the Buddhist Hsi Lai Temple
This Buddhist temple on Glenmark Drive draws thousands of visitors, particularly during the Chinese New Year in January-February.
Located on 15 acres with a floor area of more than 100,000 square feet, the Hsi Lai Temple is one of the largest Buddhist temples in North America.
It was completed in 1998 after ten years of planning and construction of its building initiated by the Taiwanese Buddhist organization Fo Guang Shan.
The distinct architectural design of the Hsi Lai Temple mirrors the traditional style of the Ming and Qing dynasties.
The makeup of the temple’s courtyard, statuary, and gardens is also faithful to these ancient designs of Chinese royalty.
Visitors can enjoy lunch at the temple’s dining hall and lighter fare in its Tea Room.
They can also browse shelves at the temple’s bookstore offering other items like prayer beads, incense, statues, meditation supplies, artwork, and postcards.
An Art Gallery with Buddhist artifacts and Chinese artworks is another point of interest in the Hsi Lai Temple.
Get Soaked at Splash! La Mirada Regional Aquatics Center
Splash! La Mirada Regional Aquatics Center is an enchanting destination in La Mirada, 10 miles southwest of Rowland Heights.
The pirate theme of its Buccaneer Bay Waterpark can instantly excite families visiting this aquatics center on La Mirada Boulevard.
Moreover, the waterpark’s features include a flowing river channel, two body slides, three water slides leading into a catch pool, and a six-lane mat racer.
Younger kids can swim safely at Splash! La Mirada Regional Aquatics Center.
Its waterpark boasts two spray pad areas, a zero-depth beach entry, and an interactive play structure.
In addition, the aquatics center provides a spa, a 25-yard teaching/recreation pool, and a 50-meter competition pool.
This suburban community has developed many exciting points of interest as a result of the diverse cultures that it has drawn over the years.
Check out what Rowland Heights offers on your next visit to Los Angeles.