Sunday Worship on the US Side
Our weekly bi-national celebration of communion begins at 1:30 pm inside Friendship Park.
* On the US side, we gather in between the two walls that define the US federal patrol zone.
* Access to Friendship Park is available year-round on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 2 pm.
* Our weekly celebration of communion serves as something of a "closing ceremony" for visitors in the United States.
NOTE: The US side is supervised by Border Patrol agents and
visitors should be prepared to show proof of residence in the United States!
Getting to the US side of Friendship Park takes time, and for the full experience you should plan to invest at least two hours during the summer months and at least three hours during the rest of the year.
* During summer months, the vehicle road through Border Field State Park is OPEN, so you can drive all the way in to Friendship Park. The cost per vehicle is now $7 to drive in to the State Park.
* For most of the year, visitors must hike through Border Field State Park, so please plan ahead for a 30-45 minute walk EACH WAY through Border Field State Park. The hike is 1.8 miles each way, almost entirely on level ground.
Is the State Park open to vehicles? CHECK HERE
Inside Friendship Park, visitors are subject to (sometimes unpredictable) restrictions imposed by U.S. Border Patrol.
* The agent on duty may enforce a limit on the number of people allowed into Friendship Park, so you may have to wait before entering during busy times.
* Nothing can be passed through the fence. This is a customs violation and includes food, money, gifts, and notes.
* Sometimes we are prevented from entering federal property altogether and are forced to worship with our friends from Tijuana while separated by a distance of 90 feet.
Here is a typical timeline for joining Border Church on the US side. (During summer months, you can reduce this timeline by one hour, as no hike is necessary, you can drive all the way into Monument Mesa, paying $5 per vehicle).
* 12:00 - 12:30 pm Travel from central San Diego location to Parking Lot Entrance to Border Field State Park
(1250 Monument Road, San Diego CA 92154)
* 12:30 - 1:00 pm Hike from Parking Lot to Monument Mesa (during summer months,
* 1:00 - 1:30 pm Check in with Border Patrol Agent, get oriented by Border Church Pastors, greet friends from Tijuana
* 1:30 - 2:00 pm Worship with friends from Tijuana / turn the Border Wall into the Table of the Lord
* 2:00 - 2:15 pm Debrief the experience and say farewell
* 2:15 - 2:45 pm hike back to Parking Lot
* 2:45 - 3:15 pm Travel back to central San Diego location
Friendship Park, located 15 miles south of San Diego, is a half-acre plaza overlooking the Pacific Ocean at the border between San Diego and Tijuana. The plaza sits atop Monument Mesa, and is part of a larger 800-acre Border Field State Park. To get to Friendship Park you must:
Travel TO Border Field State Park (the California State Park);
Travel THROUGH Border Field to Monument Mesa (the mesa by the Pacific Ocean);
Enter INTO Friendship Park (the binational meeting place inside the security walls)
How to get to Border Field State Park:
From the freeway
Take Hwy 5 South, exit at Dairy Mart Road.
Turn right (west), cross over the bridge. Dairy Mart Road will curve to the right and turn into Monument Road.
Keep following this winding road until you arrive at a parking lot. At the west end of the parking lot, you will see an entrance gate and, further ahead, a kiosk. This is the entrance to Border Field State Park.
From Imperial Beach
Exit the freeway at Coronado Avenue (exit #4) in Imperial Beach. Go straight from the off-ramp onto Hollister Street.
Continue south on Hollister until you reach Monument Road. Turn right (West) on Monument Rd. until you reach the parking lot.
How to get through Border Field to Monument Mesa:
To reach Friendship Park you must travel through the beautiful Border Field State Park. The distance from the entrance gate to Friendship Park is 1.6 miles. You may drive (when weather allows), walk, bicycle, or ride horses through Border Field State Park.
The State Park entrance gate is open and accessible to vehicles on Saturdays and Sundays, weather permitting (roughly April through November). California State Parks may charge a $7 admission fee per vehicle with vehicle access. To learn whether Border Field State Park is open to vehicles this weekend, visit this page.
When No Vehicle Access
The vehicle road is subject to frequent flooding in winter months, and the park gate is closed to vehicle traffic most days during the winter (roughly November through April). When the gate is closed you will have to park at the entrance to Border Field State Park and hike or bicycle about 1.6 miles each way on level ground. Pedestrians, cyclists and equestrians may still enter the park, even when the gate is closed.
Entering Friendship Park
At the end of the vehicle road (and at the south end of the beach) you will find Monument Mesa, the westernmost mesa overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Atop the Mesa you will find a beautiful picnic area and bathroom facilities provided by California State Park.
You will also see the border wall, which is on U.S. federal property and under the jurisdiction of U.S. Border Patrol. A gate in this wall is your entrance to the binational meeting place.
The U.S. side of Friendship Park is open to the public year-round on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 AM-2 PM. Border Patrol may request proof of U.S. residence from visitors to Friendship Park and the surrounding area which is heavily patrolled. Border Patrol rules prohibit passing items through the fence between the U.S. and Mexico.
Virtual Tour / U.S. side
Located inside of the Federal Patrol zone, enclosed by the secondary fence, the US side of Friendship Park is sterile and monotone.
Access is limited to Saturdays and Sundays from 10-2 when families are allowed restricted access to approach the primary boundary.
The presence of the Border Church each Sunday brings alive a sacred presence that is otherwise disguised by the controlled and restricted space.