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San Francisco

Favorite hikes nearby S.F.?

Heading to San Francisco this summer and want to do some hiking! What are the best hikes within a few hours outside of SF to get some exercise and take in the views? Thinking about checking out Marin, but would love to know your favorites.

3 Answers

answered by
Andy from San Francisco

I haven't gone hiking that much around the bay area, but I did organize a hike around Muir Beach that I really enjoyed.  The best part of the hike is that you start at the Muir Beach parking lot, which is much easier to find a spot than the other lots near Muir woods. You have multiple trails to choose from, depending on what you want to see and how long you want to hike for. Google maps actually has very accurate trail information for Muir beach. 

In addition, when you end the hike back at Muir beach, you're only steps away from Pelican Inn , where you can have brunch and relax with a cold beer. But make sure to make a reservation before the hike because the place is small and quite popular. If you want to reserve a spot on their deck, you'll have to call several days ahead. 

After brunch you can head back to Muir beach and play on the actual beach. The beach isn't big, but it's big enough for you to find a spot to put down a blanket. Muir beach also allows bonfires at night, but I'd doubt you'll have the energy for that after a long day of hiking and drinking. =)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Muir Beach (attraction)
  2. Pelican Inn (hotel)
2 thanks

answered by
Tiffany from Corvallis

One of my favorite places to hike near San Fran is in Muir Woods National Monument. It's cool and beautiful with streams running throughout the old growth redwood forest. There are many trails in and around this forest including the Dipsea Trail that leads from the redwoods to views from Mount Tamalpais State Park and down to Stinson Beach. This trail is over 9 miles long, but if you check out the trail maps, there are others of varying difficulty and length.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Muir Woods National Monument (attraction)
  2. Dipsea Trail (attraction)
  3. Mount Tamalpais State Park (attraction)
  4. Stinson Beach (attraction)
2 thanks

answered first by
Krista from San Francisco

You're coming to the right place, Emily! San Francisco and its nearby surroundings offer some amazing hikes.

Here are my faves:

  • Alamere Falls in Bolinas. This 8 mile roundtrip trek offers unbeatable views of water spilling into the ocean on a private beach. Long, but not overly so, this hike is also reasonably flat with short spurts on incline.

  • Dipsea Trail Super well known in SF, you can do varying versions of Mt. Tam's Dipsea Trail depending on how much you want to tackle/what the weather conditions are. Amazing views from the top!

  • Tennessee Valley Has a variety of trails, and they're all close to the coast. The valley in itself is only about 30 minutes from the city, so it's easy to do in a day.

  • Rubicon Trail This one may be a bit further than you're looking to go, but it worth it! The Rubicon wraps around Tahoe's shoreline and Emerald Bay 4.5 miles each way.

  • Point Lobos If you're game to go about 3 hours south, you should make it a point to explore Point Lobos State Park in Carmel. There are a number of trails and you can spend the entire day hiking around. My favorite part of Point Lobos is China Beach

  • Coastal Trail This tiny trail is really mild, at 1.7 miles each way. Located in San Francisco, it's a great way to spend an hour. It also provides breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Eagle Point Labyrinth. If you're hungry after, I highly recommend the raw jungle acai bowl Judahlicious.

Hope this helps! :)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Alamere Falls (attraction)
  2. Dipsea Trail (attraction)
  3. Tennessee Valley (attraction)
  4. Rubicon Trail (attraction)
  5. Emerald Bay (attraction)
  6. Point Lobos (attraction)
  7. Coastal Trail (attraction)
  8. Golden Gate Bridge (attraction)
  9. Eagle Point Labyrinth (attraction)
  10. Judahlicious (attraction)
  11. China Beach (attraction)
2 thankscomments (1)

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