Named after the first Spanish land grant in the county, Rancho Penasquitos is a neighborhood located in the northeastern part of San Diego. Penasquitos means "little cliffs" in Spanish since the area is naturally mountainous and has multiple canyons. The area is separated from the rest of the county of by hills and canyons, which gives it a more rural feel. To keep the natural rural feel, thirty four percent of the community is designated for parks and open space.
The major attraction and most visible landmark is Black Mountain. Rancho Penasquitos has one of the leading school districts in the area. Most households in the community can be classified in the middle class. Because of the naturally spread out landscape and lack of public transportation, residents will need vehicles to get around.
The typical risks of earthquakes are also present in Rancho Penasquitos. Wildfires and landslides are also a risk in the area, and residents need to be aware of these risks.
The area was home to a prehistoric Native American culture, and their remains can still be found in the neighborhood to this day. Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve sits on the southern border of the area and offers trails for hiking, horseback riding, and biking.