Explore Muir Woods National Monument
San Francisco › Muir Woods National Monument Parking
Added by Katch Silva
Experience the humbling beauty of these magnificent redwoods. Muir Woods is a perfect trip for families and out-of-town guests with multiple loops and hiking options for groups of all fitness levels.
While there are other, less crowded redwood groves in the Bay Area, Muir Woods National Monument is easily one of the best. It is a beautifully maintained site, with wooden footpaths meandering between towering redwoods that are between 600 – 800 years old. It’s home to some true giants, with it’s tallest trees reaching over 250 ft in height.
Muir Woods contains 6 miles of trails (see trail map), and there are multiple options for those looking for a good hike. There are several loops along the canyon walls that you can choose from, as well as hikes that extend into surrounding Mount Tamalpais State Park. A popular choice is the 4.5 mile Muir Woods Tourist Club Loop. Pick up a trail map at the entrance and explore.
Regardless of what you choose to do, this place will leave you with that humbling, awe-inspiring feeling that you typically only find in nature’s most remote corners.
Park fees are $7/adult and children 15 and younger are free. Parking can be difficult if you arrive much later than 9:00am. The Visitor Center features nice restrooms, a café, and a gift shop.
Inside Tip: This is an extremely popular destination (we’re talking tour buses), so plan on getting there right when the park opens (8:00am), and before the Visitor Center opens (9:00am). Bring cash and simply place the park fees in the self-service entrance…and enjoy a much less crowded experience.
- Dress in layers, it’s shady and damp
- Sturdier hiking shoes if you venture on some of the longer trails
- Money for entrance fee
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More
Chillin, Hiking, Photography
Are we missing something?Suggest an edit
ReviewsLeave a Review
"The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness"
John Muir said it right and the most beautiful small universe can be found in the redwoods at Muir Woods National Monument. The towering trees will leave you in dumbfounded awe (trees are so cool, please learn about the red woods). Spend time, and I mean real time, here and encounter the beauty.
Spectacularly beautiful, however EPICALLY crowded. These trees demand a sort of decorum, but anytime there's a crowd there will be noise and people being disrespectful of the trees. But it's still worth seeing.
the hike was definitely worth it! really beautiful! go in the morning to avoid extreme traffic. this is a tourist hotspot. when my boyfriend and I were done with the hike around 11 there were tons of people looking for parking.
Early Bird Gets the Worm!
Muir Woods National Monument is my favorite place for a serene and scenic hike. It's on my top of go-to places, especially when recommending it others. As many reviews have mentioned, parking is one of the most concurrent issues, so plan ahead and arrive early.
Beat the Crowds
Arriving before 8:30 am on a weekday ensures that you have the monument basically to yourself. This allows you to fully immerse yourself in the experience of appreciating these trees the way you were intended to. Absolutely gorgeous and absolutely worth it, even if you're there with other tourists.
Endor at its finest!
I love coming here and imagining that I'm a part of the Star Wars universe (fact: they filmed scenes from Endor here). An easily accessible escape from the city, it's also free (with guests) if you have a US National Parks annual pass.
An American Treasure
A visit to Muir Woods is like stepping back in time...literally. Standing under these ancient trees is an experience that I will never forget. Make sure to arrive early or parking can be quite a task. Bring enough snacks and water in case you want to do one of the extended hikes, which is worth it. We also ate at the little cafe for lunch and I loved it's commitment to organic food, and reducing the impact on the environment.
Went just as suggested early. We arrived around 8:15 am, didn't have to pay fees because the park wasn't officially open and they just let us go in. Very quiet and little traffic on the trails. By the time we were done LOADS of people. Will go again and get there early again.
More Adventures Nearby
Hike the Monte Bello Open Space Preserve Loop
San Francisco / Monte Bello Open Space Parking
This hike is best done in the late fall, winter, and spring so that the creek is running and the hills are green.
Hike Montgomery Woods State Nature Reserve Loop
San Francisco / Montgomery Woods SNR
This is a great find. We saw it on the map it was on the way from Mendocino to our next stop, Napa Valley. So glad we took the time to visit.