16 Finest Hikes in San Francisco You Should Strive


Many vacationers know regarding the world-renowned Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and flock there as shortly as they get to city and they should, it’s an icon of San Francisco. As anyone who has lived throughout the metropolis for almost twenty years, vacationer factors of curiosity in San Francisco are good, nonetheless, I want to share a technique to spice up the experience of visiting the Golden Gate Bridge and the San Francisco Bay area by combining it with lesser acknowledged nonetheless nonetheless good mountaineering spots and vista components. These are the most effective hikes in San Francisco to get you open air and supply fantastic views.

Best Hikes in San Francisco, California

1. Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation House

Golden Gate National Recreation Area Hiking Trails

Most vacationers tend to begin out their Golden Gate Bridge stroll on the bottom of the bridge, flip round and stroll once more. They take some footage alongside the best way by which and go dwelling. That isn’t harmful, nonetheless, to get the additional practice, take in greater views, and end up feeling additional glad by having a day full of additional diversified experiences let’s take points a bit further.

The Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation House boasts miles of mountaineering trails, and unobstructed views and is the right technique to see a particular side of San Francisco. It spans every of the Marin and San Francisco sides of the Golden Gate Bridge and has mountaineering trails for every well being diploma. For additional data on mountaineering and parking go to the Golden Gate Bridge Web page.

2. Lands End

Lands End Hike in San Francisco

The trail alongside Lands End Hike isn’t too prolonged, nonetheless, it is pretty magical. The stroll offers nice vistas distinctive to San Francisco. On a clear day, the hikers can see far into the depths of the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Marin Headlands to the north, and the Golden Gate Bridge to the east.

Start off throughout the Outer Richmond area on the perimeter of Lands End Golden Gate House near the Cliff House and the historic Sutro Baths and Park on the Lands End Elementary Parking Lot. From there, a path leads into Lands End contained in the Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation House, and your journey begins.

The realm is called Lands End on account of its place really on the end of all land to the west as its cliffs end on the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. The slim path that parallels the cliffs doesn’t disappoint. It quickly leads the vacationers correct alongside the sting of the cliffs, beneath which the Pacific Ocean waves crash into the rocks.

Surprisingly, the park moreover has the simplest paintings museums in San Francisco. The Palace of the Legion of Honor is an outstanding place to take a break for an hour or two and take in some Picasso and Rembrandt sooner than lastly heading off to Golden Gate Bridge.

The Lands End Path ends (no pun supposed) on an avenue referred to as El Camino Del Mar, which has a couple of of the best views of the ocean in your full metropolis and is in a prestigious neighborhood.

Viewpoints embody the Sutro Baths, Jap Coastal Path Lookout, Lands End Labyrinth, Ineffective Man’s Degree, and the Golden Gate Bridge.

3. Golden Gate Bridge

Golden Gate Bridge San Francisco

Strolling once more from Lands End Path, you’ll stroll all the best way by which to the Golden Gate Bridge. The highway El Camino Del Mar passes China Seaside after which turns into Lincoln Boulevard which leads in direction of the Golden Gate Bridge. It is a highway-like avenue, nonetheless pretty shortly, smaller strolling trails develop to be on the market as detours and lead within the path of the bridge by means of a quieter and additional scenic strolling route unhindered by automobiles.

As quickly as on the bridge, the traditional and fundamental experience of strolling the bridge offers a couple of related views of San Francisco Bay from a variety of fully totally different angles. In addition to, as you get nearer to the other side of the bridge, views of San Francisco downtown open up, with the long-lasting Transamerica development standing tall above the rest.

On warmth and clear days, there are numerous little sailboats correct beneath the bridge, all through the bay, and near Alcatraz Island.  In addition to, there are numerous gigantic freighter ships coming into the San Francisco and Oakland ports from each single place on the planet.

All the ships to these ports come by way of the bay and so they‘re pretty a take care of to see. On lucky days, there are even navy vehicles that come into the port and I’ve personally ever seen a submarine cruising above the water about ten years prior to now.

4. Batteries to Bluffs

Batteries to Bluffs Hiking Trail San Francisco

Sticking throughout an identical area as a result of the Lands End hike is the Batteries to Bluffs path hike in San Francisco. Positioned in San Francisco’s Presidio, a 1,500-acre park on a former navy put-up, the Batteries to Bluffs path hike offers views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the San Francisco Bay area, and the rugged shoreline. That’s solely a 2-mile (3.2 km) hike spherical journey, so it could presumably merely be added to your San Francisco Itinerary.

The trail begins at Lincoln blvd the place you’ll park on the Langdon Courtroom Parking lot. This parking zone connects to the paths ensuing within the Golden Gate Welcome Coronary heart which choices the Golden Gate Overlook and the batteries used to protect the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco from 1891 to 1946.

You might stroll by way of these historic web sites with views of the Golden Gate Bridge from Presidio, Battery Boutelle, Battery Marcus, and Battery Cranston.

The Golden Gate Overlook is, doubtless, one of many premier spots to {{photograph}} the Golden Gate Bridge so the trail is busy, nonetheless for good motive. It offers the most effective views of the Golden Gate Bridge throughout the metropolis. There are a great deal of picket steps alongside this hike and the simplest location for sunset is to take the steps proper right down to Marshall’s Seaside.

5. Twin Peaks

Twin Peaks Hike in San Francisco

Twin Peaks is doubtless one of many most interesting San Francisco mountaineering trails for spectacular metropolis views. It is a intently trafficked path 3.4-mile loop path, and you could drive or cycle as a lot because the lookout for.

Twin Peaks is a metropolis mountaineering path positioned contained in the metropolis limits it is the second tallest peak in San Francisco (922-foot tall ) that overlooks your full San Francisco Bay area, and the city’s landmarks. The hike feels far-off from city with forest trails, eucalyptus timber, rocky outcrops, picket walkways, and filth paths taking you as a lot as Eureka Peak and Noe Peak.

Starting in Glen Canyon Park, the Twin Peaks path climbs 1.7 miles to Eureka Peak and Noe Peak after which descends on the North Facet to Christmas Tree Degree for the most effective views of the Pacific and the city of San Francisco.

Christmas Tree Degree acquired its identification from the large Christmas tree that is erected yearly by the city. On the best way by which once more, hop on to the Gum Tree Ladies Path for a particular perspective.

6. Mount Sutro Loop

Mount Sutro Loop in San Francisco

In the event you want to proceed to walk, it’s one different 1.1 miles from Twin Peaks alongside the road to the Mount Sutro Open Home Reserve with mountaineering trails and greenspace overlooking city. Or you’ll stroll this 1.9-mile loop path (3.2 kilometers) alongside The Historic Path from seventeenth and Stanyan.

It takes you as a lot because the Mount Sutro Open Home Reserve which is a 61-acre open space reserve owned by the UCSF. It is a normal spot for locals with 5 miles of public, multi-use trails, and a 900-foot elevation purchase.

On the best way by which down you’ll be part of the Fairy Gates path to the Fairy Gates Trailhead at Stanyan Street to walk once more alongside the highway to the place you started.

7. Golden Gate Bridge to Marin Headlands

Hking out to the Marin Headlands in San Francisco

A few of the iconic points to do in San Francisco is to walk the Golden Gate Bridge. Leaving from the Golden Gate Welcome Coronary heart a stroll all through the bridge to the Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation House to the Marin Headlands.

Most people uncover this enough of a stroll, nonetheless, should you want to uncover additional, There are lots of mountaineering trails throughout the Muir Woods.

8. Muir Woods

Muir Woods in San Francisco Hiking

Positioned merely exterior of San Francisco, Muir Woods Nationwide Monument offers a couple of of probably the most attractive mountaineering trails near San Francisco. There are lots of fully totally different trails spanning the 554 acres of Muir Woods. There are a variety of trails in Muir Woods to pick from.

The phrase that Parking reservations are required prematurely. Parking fills up quickly and must you don’t e-book prematurely you gained get in. Confirm with the Nationwide Parks Service for additional data.

This beautiful area offers spectacular bay area for mountaineering among the many many old-growth coastal redwoods. Muir Woods has various trails, with The Muir Woods Elementary Path being a popular starting place that hooks up with totally different trails throughout the area.

Leaving from the Muir Woods Buyer’s Coronary heart and following Redwood Creek, this easy hike is completed on a boardwalk and is acceptable for all ages. It is a 2.0-mile loop path (3.2 km) with solely a 30-foot elevation acquired.

In case you’re looking out for an prolonged hike be part of The Ben Johnson Path for a 6.3km loop that may take you through a couple of of probably the most stunning landscapes throughout the Muir Woods Nationwide Monument.

Distance: 2.0 mi (3.2 km)
Elevation Obtain30 ft
Time: 2 hours
Trailhead: Muir Woods Buyer Coronary heart
Google Maps Directions

9. Mount Diablo State Park

Hiking Trails in Mount Diablo State Park San Francisco

In case you’re up for a bit little bit of a drive exterior of San Francisco, you’ll head out to Mount Diablo State Park, which is a few 40-minute drive east of city. This could be a good day journey and the views over East Bay hills are spectacular. The summit path proper right here ranges in measurement and subject and is the best fitted for seasoned hikers.

For the most effective views, we advocate the Donner Creek Loop path. This out-and-back path has a couple of of probably the most spectacular views and is an additional affordable path.

Start throughout the parking zone on the north entrance at Regency Drive and hike alongside  Donner Creek Fireside Road after which take the Once more Creek Path Once more.

One in all many causes you’ll love this path is that you simply simply actually transfer only a few waterfalls and weave by the plains all through the second half of the trail. In case you’re looking out for a day of mountaineering, near the San Francisco bay area be certain to check out this State Park.

10. Tennessee Valley Path, Marin Headlands

Positioned merely north of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Tennessee Valley path is a hike that ends in a sandy seashore and a handsome lookout. You might choose from two fully totally different seashores.

From the Tennessee Valley trailhead, you’ll each hike straight to Tennessee Seaside for an out-and-back hike or do the harder loop to Muir Seaside by means of the Pirate’s Cove Path. This hike begins from the Tennessee Valley Trailhead and is a few 9-mile loops.

In the event you occur to pick the Tennessee Valley path it winds its method by way of beautiful coastal hills and ends on the seashore at Tennessee Cove. Proper right here you’ll have a picnic and take the views of the Pacific Ocean.

Distance: 7.0 mi (14.6 km) by means of Muir Seaside Loop
Elevation Obtain900 ft
Time: 4 hours
Trailhead: Tennessee Valley Trailhead

11. Angel Island State Park

Views of Sanfrancisco from Angel Island State Park

Surprisingly, Angel Island State Park is a usually uncared for place to hike throughout the Bay House, though it is solely a 40min ferry expertise from Pier 41 in downtown San Francisco.

There are 2 main mountaineering trails throughout the state park. The Sunset Path goes to the summit of Mount Livermore and is a little more troublesome than the other one. The payoff is the 360 diploma views of the skyline, the Golden Gate Bridge, and East Bay.

The other path in Angel Island State Park is the Perimeter Path. That could be a easy hike and gives you many different viewpoints along with places to be taught in regard to the historic previous of the island itself. In case you’re visiting the bay area for only a few days then Angel Island is definitely valued as a go-to even when mountaineering should not be on the excessive of your itemizing. It is also attainable to camp on the island.

12. Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park

Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park Hikes San Francisco

Positioned throughout the East Bay Regional Park District, solely a 20-minute drive from downtown San Francisco, Redwood Regional Park is the best understood for the earlier progress redwood forest that makes for the right backdrop to any hike. It is actually the largest remaining pure stand of coast redwood in East Bay.

Our suggestion is to hop on the Stream Path, Mill Path, and French Path Loop. This could be a path with a great deal of ups and downs nonetheless the odor of the redwoods combined with the engaging forest panorama make this a really perfect hike notably when it is going to get really scorching.

Start on the Skyline Gate Parking Lot and adjust to the Stream Path until you come to the place it meets the Mill Path. Observe this for a bit until it hooks up with the French Path and take this once more to the parking zone.

13. Mori Degree, Pacifica

Mori Point Pacifica near San Francisco

Mori Degree is a spectacular lookout that is merely south of San Francisco. Positioned in San Mateo County, Mori Degree offers only a few fully totally different mountaineering trails which could be alongside the coast. It moreover hooks up with the longer Coastal Path. This 32-acre wetland park has a couple of of the best views of the ocean throughout the Golden Gate Nationwide Nationwide Recreation area.

The 2 trails we advocate are the Outdated Mori Path, which is additional of a stroll because it‘s flat as a pancake. It does nonetheless convey some unimaginable views. And you may head down the steps to get to the seashore must you like. Merely take into accout, it is a should to return once more up the 185 steps.

The other suggestion is the Mori Degree Loop Path. This 1.5-mile (2.4km) loop path offers some good coastal views along with wildflowers and wildlife. It would in all probability get windy alongside the coast and there are some steep sections, nonetheless, it is worth it in our opinion. This could be a good place to profit from the sunset and spot whales.

Distance: 1.5 mi (2.4 km)
Elevation Obtain1200 ft
Time: half-hour
Trailhead: Mori Degree Parking Lot (Directions Proper right here)

14. Tomales Degree Path at Degree Reyes Nationwide Seashore

Tomales Pooint Trail near San Francisco

This hike is surely one of many classics. Not solely as a result of attractive views, nonetheless in consequence it’s, doubtless, one of many quieter hikes near San Francisco. The Tomales Degree Path is positioned in Degree Reyes Nationwide Seashore between Tomales Bay and the Pacific Ocean.

There’s so much to see all through this hike. Duck Seaside, Sand Degree, Tom’s Degree, and views of Fowl Rock merely to name only a few. What may be cool is that it is fully throughout the Tule Elk Defend, so your chance of seeing some elk are pretty good.

That’s an out-and-back path so make sure to current your self self-time to get once more. One discover, this path is often lined in fog. This doesn’t take away from the hike itself, nonetheless, must you put throughout the time to get to the lookout and it is fogged in you is prone to be dissatisfied. That being talked about, the hike is worth it’s fog or no fog.

15. Mount Tamalpais state park

best hikes in san francisco Mount tamalpais state park

At Mount Tamalpais state park, there’s a bit little little bit of every thing for everyone. Fully totally different trails with differing ranges of points and sizes. Novices, seasoned hikers, walkers, joggers, and bikers all have a spot at Mount Tam.

Its varied panorama makes making it one of many very important customary trails throughout the area. Benefit from attractive views of the rolling hills, oak forest, redwood, and scenic ocean on the paths.

The ultimate phrase downside is to hike all the best way by which as a lot because the mountain peak for a wide-ranging view of the ocean. Most visitors go for a leisurely stroll alongside the Dipsea Path, steep ravine path loop, and Matt Davis loop.

Distance: 60 mi (96 km) out and once more
Time: Varies
Trailhead: Pantoll Ranger Station or the East Peak Coronary heart

16. Half Moon Bay Coastal Path

Half moon Bay State Beach in California

Additionally known as the coast side path, take pleasure in scenic trails with breathtaking views of the pacific ocean. Even supposing this path is on a cliff it’s probably certainly one of many greatest on this itemizing as your full terrain is usually flat. The mountaineering path is about 6-mile roundtrip and is right for bikers, walkers, or hikers.

Your whole path is well-maintained and actually easy to walk, give it some thought additional of a scenic strolling route. Benefit from stunning views of precise swimming throughout the ocean and birds floating about. The easiest half is the cooling breeze from the ocean that makes the hike correctly worth it.

Distance: 7.5 mi (12 km) out and once more
Elevation Obtain213 ft
Time: 1hr quarter-hour
Trailhead: Miramontes Degree Road

What to Pack to your San Francisco Hikes

When it comes to mountaineering throughout the San Francisco area you want to make sure you pack only a few necessities as a result of the local weather can change quickly and in addition you want to be prepared for any state of affairs, even on the shorter hikes. Here is what we suggest you pack in a day pack sooner than hitting the paths.

  • Water
  • Digital digicam or Smartphone
  • Day Pack
  • Mountaineering Jacket (Waterproof and windproof)
  • Mountaineering Sneakers or Working Sneakers
  • Snacks
  • Beanie or warmth hat
  • Sunscreen
  • Shades
Hiking Trails near San Francisco

Regardless of which hikes you choose, getting out onto the paths is an outstanding train so as to add to your San Francisco Itinerary. To say that we had been impressed with the sheer amount of trails may be an understatement. Pair that with the coastal views and the best way well-maintained the paths are and it is easy to see why San Francisco is an outstanding place to hike.

Author Bio

Alex Genadinik has lived in San Francisco for over 15 years and enjoys the Northern California open air.  He is for the time being engaged in uniting the assorted fully totally different small mountaineering groups dispersed all by the Bay House proper into an additional united exterior neighborhood. Yow will uncover out additional about good San Francisco hikes at Mountaineering San Francisco. This put-up has been updated by ThePlanetD Crew.


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