About Canyon Lake - Canyon Lake California

All About Canyon Lake

Paddle-boarding at Sunset

Welcome to Canyon Lake So Cal, one of the most unique cities and communities in America.  It's unique because of it's one-of-a-kind private 400 acre lake for use of the residents for fishing, waterskiing, wakeboarding, and pleasure boating.  It's unique because of 20 parks and beaches spread around the community with playground equipment, volleyball nets, basketball courts, dedicated swimming areas, and Frisbee golf.  It's unique because of an 18 hole Southern California Golf Association rated course winding through the community.  It's unique because of all the other amenities like Happy Camp campground, Gault Field baseball diamonds, and a 10 acre equestrian center.  It's unique because of 4800 homes ranging from small little vacation bungalows to massive waterfront mansions.  

Browse around the site and get to know the area and you'll soon understand why we call it "A Bit of Paradise".


Original known as Railroad Canyon Lake, the lake was created in 1927 when the Temescal Water Company put a dam on the San Jacinto River to create a reliable local irrigation source for local citrus groves and farmers.  From 1937 to 1968 Canyon Lake was primarily a recreation area and fishing resort.  The Corona Land Company saw it's potential as a community and began development in 1968.  Early on, most of the residents were retirees and weekenders.


Canyon Lake's climate is semi-arid with dry hot summers and mild winters.  Average summer temperatures are around 90 degrees with a few heat waves that push into the hundreds.  Winter temperatures average 50-60 degrees and days are typically sunny.  Rainfall averages about 10" per year and rains are only typical in January, Fecruary and March and provide great benefit to the community because they fill up the lake.  The climate is great for growing as evidenced by the long history of citrus groves, avocado groves, and vineyards in neighboring cities.


Canyon Lake is located in the Southwest corner of Riverside County in Southern California.  Easily accessible from Interstate 15 (Railroad Canyon Rd exit) or Interstate 215 (Newport rd. exit), Canyon lake is only about 20 minutes from Corona and 15 minutes from Temecula.  With Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego all within and hour's drive, day trips to the beaches and other popular Southern California attractions are all easily within reach.  The closest airport is Ontario International Airport which provides convenient and fast passenger handling with most major airlines.

Local Business

Canyon Lake is an incorporated city with it's own City Hall and Chamber of Commerce that support it's local businesses.  The nearest businesses are located across from the Main Gate entrance in the Canyon Lake Towne Center.  There are dentists, vetrinarians, attorneys, restaurants, real estate offices and many other small local businesses conveniently located close to the community.  There are additional local businesses just outside the East Gate entrance as well.  Stater Bros. grocery store, CVS, Chevron and several other businesses are located within a half mile of the main gate in the Canyon Hills Shopping Center.  Larger shopping centers are located within 5 miles of Canyon Lake and include some large national stores like Best Buy, Lowe's, BevMo, Petsmart, and Wal-Mart.


The community boasts some incredible amenities along with the lake.  There's a community lodge with Lighthouse restaurant and bar that that overlooks the lake and serves a variety of modern cuisine.  Next to the lodge, you have the swimming pool open from March through November and nearby Sunset Beach where most of the action is on the weekends.  Tennis courts are located in the same area and support a vibrant tennis club.  The 18 hole, par 71 golf course provides a unique challenge to players with it's difficult lies, mature trees, and a few hidden greens.  Holiday Harbor is another popular beach and park that supports many of the communities annual activities and is available to property owners for their own special events.  Year round slalom ski course is available at the North end of Canyon Lake and host several ski and wakeboard events yearly.  And we can't forget Happy Camp for the residents and their guests who want a top notch camping experience with lakeside sites available along with restroom and shower facilities.  There are so many other great amenities in Canyon Lake, almost too may to list, along with a variety of clubs, organizations, and annual activities for every age.

Schools and Churches

Canyon Lake is part of the Lake Elsinore Unified School District was has received many honors in recent years for educational excellence.  There are no schools inside the gates of Canyon Lake, but all schools are within bussing or driving distance and some kids even ride bikes or walk to the elementary school and middle school.  Check out our school page for more information.

The Canyon Lake Community Church has been a landmark in the community since 1977 and is a popular place for worship among the residents.  There are also various denominational churches close by in Lake Elsinore, Menifee, and Sun City.

Real Estate

With approximately 4800 home sites in Canyon Lake, the real estate market has a healthy turnover of homes.  Many people move in from L.A., Orange County, and San Diego as well as other neighboring communities.  There are also a high number of people who move around within the community, sometimes to get a better view or upgrade to a waterfront.  The homes located within the gates, and the large acreages across Railroad Canyon Rd. known as The Estates, and the gated manufactured homes area known as The Fairway Estates (also on Railroad Canyon Rd.) are all part of Canyon Lake and all enjoy use of the amenities.  There are also vacant lots available in the community for those wishing to build a custom home or invest long term. Looking for a low maintenance condo on the water?  We have those too in Canyon Lake.  Visit our real estate pages for information about the current market in Canyon Lake and to search for homes for sale.

Property Owners Association

The Canyon Lake POA operates and maintains the common areas within Canyon Lake, as well as the amenities, roads, and lake operations.  The POA acts in accordance with the governing documents of the community under the direction of the general manager and a 5 person board of directors elected from among the residents.  The association provides numerous services to the community and members including architectural approval, lake and community patrol, ownership transfers, and much more.  All property owners, including lot owners, are members of the association.

City of Canyon Lake

You might not know that Canyon Lake has been an incorporated city since 1990.  The "City of Canyon Lake" administers such services as police, fire, building and safety, and tax revenues.  The city has it's own building in the Towne Center with a City Manager, City Council, Mayor and other city employees.  Canyon Lake also has a Chamber of Commerce that takes the lead on business development and support in the area.

Canyon Lake is a gated private community so if you plan to come out click here to schedule a tour with a local real estate agent who can show you the community and amenities.

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Take a tour of Canyon Lake!

Canyon Lake is a gate guarded community with access limited to residents and their guests.  Schedule your tour to see it from the inside with one of our local experts.