|Time zone||Pacific (PST) (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC-7)|
Pala is a small, mostly Native American, community located in the Pala Indian Reservation, located within San Diego County, California near Fallbrook. For centuries a traditional gathering place of native peoples, it was selected in the early 19th century by Spanish Franciscan missionaries as the site of a mission to serve the Native Americans.
The community is east of Carlsbad in the San Diego-Carlsbad metro area. In the National Geographic Names Database, it is officially catalogued as feature number 1661174. The community is in ZIP Code 92059, and inside area code 760.
The community is in the Pacific time zone. Pala is at an altitude of 404 feet, located at latitude (33.365N, longitude 117.075W).
After United States annexation of California following its victory in the Mexican-American War, Pala became known for its mineral resources, including gold and tourmaline. Numerous gem mines were established in 1890s, of which more than twenty are listed in the Mindat database. Gem mines in the Pala District still produce tourmaline, with the pink variety as the regional specialty.
China's Dowager Empress Cixi of Qing Dynasty highly prized the pink tourmaline mined in Pala. Under her influence, China's demand for this gem created a boom in the California tourmaline industry after 1902, particularly at the Himalaya mine. Demand fell off about 1911, declining after the Empress died in 1908.
Pala was the site where George F. Kunz, the godfather of gemology.
- Tourmaline Queen mine
- Pala District, at Mindat.org