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city, San Diego county, southern California, U.S. It is situated about 30 miles (50 km) northeast of San Diego and 18 miles (29 km) inland. The area was the site of Spanish exploration, and in 1843 it became part of the Rancho Rincon del Diablo land grant made to Juan Bautista Alvarado. The town was laid out in 1886 and named Escondido (Spanish: "Hidden") because of its secluded valley site. It became a processing and shipping point for fruits (especially avocados and grapes), wines, cereals, and dairy produce. After World War II light industry developed, and the city's population grew rapidly as Escondido emerged as a bedroom community of San Diego.