Aside from fresh air and the natural beauty of hiking in the bay area, it improves blood pressure, lowers the risk of heart disease, improves balance, and sheds COVID lbs. It is also a mood lifter. Some experts say it is an effective antidote to stress and anxiety.
Marin, one of the healthiest counties in America, offers the best hiking trails in California. Whether you’re catching a few minutes to yourself, meeting friends, or exercising with your 4 legged family members, you get to appreciate the beauty of nature during a cardio workout.
10 Hikes In Marin County to Explore this Spring:
- Palomarin to Alamere Falls – looking for a long and rewarding hike that ends in a waterfall? This 8.2-mile hike is a great workout with stunning views of Point Reyes National Seashore. Proper footwear with traction is recommended.
Pets are not allowed at Alamere Falls, and some parts are only accessible by one hiker at a time. Pack in everything you need, and leave enough time for single-file on this popular trail.
- Kirby Cove Hike – looking for a private beach and a beautiful view of the Golden Gate? This 3-mile hike is the one for you. The trail is relatively smooth. Going back up will get your heart beating, but the views are worth it!
Head over to Sausalito afterward for a delicious lunch at :
- Ring Mountain – Dog and kid-friendly hike with 360-degree views overlooking the bay. How many bridges and popular landmarks can you identify? Start from Paradise Drive in Corte Madera and peak at the summit of the Ring Mountain Open Space Preserve. From there you can loop, and explore either ridge or boulder on Turtle Rock. Combination of fire roads (open to bikes) and single track. Rangers don’t hesitate to fine owners of off-leash dogs, so leash up and save your $ for a post-hike meal.
- Bon Tempe Lake Loop – This 4.1-mile loop is a kid-friendly trail, and is suitable for most skill levels. Dogs on a leash can use the trail too. Spot animals like deer, ducks, birds, and more on this delightful walk!
- Cataract Falls Trail – Bring your camera! This is the site where photos for postcards, calendars, and now selfies are shot. Take the stairs through the fog, ferns, and under the tree canopy and you’ll feel transported to an enchanted forest. This 2.8-mile hike is open year-round and ideal for visiting anytime. Active kids and dogs are welcome if they’re up for natural stairs.
- Tennessee Valley Trail – This trail is popular for all ages. Enjoy hiking through this 2.5-mile loop that ends at a beautiful beach. There are many trails to explore off the main trail, in case you want a more vigorous hike! Parking is limited, so early starts are recommended.
- China Camp State Park Loop – This 8.9-mile loop with plenty of shade is a great way to slip in a before or after-work escape. Great for trail running, hiking, biking, and camping, as well as several drive-in picnic areas overlooking the bay, with facilities. Trail use comes with a $3/pp fee, or spring for the $35 annual pass. https://friendsofchinacamp.org/
- Big Trees Trail – This 3.6-mile loop is a bit narrow and considered a moderately challenging route. Plenty of shade from the tree canopy, and some towering trees that might take your entire group to hug!
- Terra Linda/Sleepy Hollow Divide Trail – Enjoy this ridge hike with your dog (on leash). Incredible views from both sides of the fire road. This 4.1-mile trail is kid-friendly and fun to do with your family and friends. It connects with the popular 680 trail and other more challenging single-track hikes. The divide trail is well utilized by neighbors in San Anselmo and Terra Linda (both sides of the trail) and carries a fun social element. Some times of the year you may see herds of goats aiding fire prevention efforts.
- Hoo Koo E Koo Trail – If you are looking for a dog and kid-friendly hike with beautiful views, don’t miss Hoo Koo E Koo Trail. This 2.7-mile loop is an easy to moderate route.