Since moving back to California from New York, it seems as if I have become more adventurous. I guess that’s a good thing! The weather is nice year round and there are many hiking trails throughout the bay area. Muir Woods National Park is about 40 minutes north of San Francisco located in Marin County. 240 acres are covered with redwood trees, one of the few standing in San Francisco Bay Area. If you enjoy hiking and exploring the great outdoors, Muir Woods is a great place to spend your day. I’ve been here 3 times and only once did I actually finish the hike to Stinson Beach, which is 5 miles from the visitor center. Muir Woods is free but there is also a Muir Woods National Monument that I did not know about! I only found out about this place through a tour company that took us here before going to wine country.
Plan Your Visit
There is LIMITED parking so I recommend going as early as possible or test your luck. I was actually pretty lucky each time as we circled around once before spotting someone leaving. Muir Woods is open year round, it is mostly covered in trees so it does not get too hot but still check the weather before your visit.
Muir Woods National Monument
This monument is basically a museum of redwood trees. It’s not a hike but more of a walk through and I only found this place after my third visit to Muir Woods! If you plan to visit the National Monument, entrance fee is $10 after 9:30am. I do recommend visiting and it’s also great for children.
Hike through Muir Woods to Stinson Beach
There are two ways to hike through Muir Woods. One, from the visitor center to Stinson Beach or Stinson Beach to Muir Woods National Monument/visitor center. Either way the hike is 5 miles using the Dipsea Trail. I recommend starting from the visitor center as it will be much easier to hike down to the beach and stop for lunch in town.
TIP: There is a shuttle that will take you back up to the visitor center!!! Exactly what my friends and I did since we were too tired to hike another 5 miles back. Take the shuttle bus route 66.
Spend time on the beach or have lunch in town
It was gloomy this day so we decided to not spend much time at the beach. Instead we had lunch at a burger stand it was great! We were so tired and hungry after the hike so it was a perfect way to end our day. We took the shuttle back to the visitor center since we did not want to hike back another 5 miles but power to you if you do!
Have you explored Muir Woods? What other trails have you done? I’m always looking for new adventures so please share them with me!