Monterey, California

Monterey, California is a top destination for outdoor adventures, boasting some of the best trails and outdoor activities. A must-visit is the scenic Point Lobos State Natural Reserve. This trail offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, unique rock formations, and a diverse array of wildlife. It's a moderate hike, making it suitable for most fitness levels. Another top trail is the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail, ideal for biking or walking with views of the bay. For water activities, Monterey Bay Kayaks offers guided tours to explore the kelp forests and marine life. Near Monterey, the Pinnacles National Park is a must-visit for rock climbing and bird-watching. These are just a few examples of the outdoor attractions in and near Monterey.

Top Spots in and near Monterey

  • Boulder Creek, California

    Big Basin's Sunset Trail Camp

    4.8
    9.46 mi / 2146 ft gain
    This trail and campsite is currently closed (learn more). Looking for a more authentic hiking and camping weekend, without having to drive hours away to find it? Then the Sunset Trail Camp within Big Basin Redwoods SP is your ticket. To access this site, you'll need to hike the famous Skyline-to...
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  • Boulder Creek, California

    Berry Creek Falls Loop (Closed)

    4.8
    10 mi / 2310 ft gain
    Unfortunately, this trail is closed due to a past fire. See CA.Gov for updates on trails in Big Basin.  Nestled in California's oldest state park, the popular Berry Creek Falls Loop hike begins at the Big Basin park headquarters. If you're up for 11 miles, a thousand feet of elevation gain throu...
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  • Boulder Creek, California

    Camp at Big Basin Redwoods State Park

    4.0
    0.5 mi
    Big Basin is currently closed including the campgrounds. Please visit the Parks.ca.gov site for updated details.  An hour away from the thrumming city of San Jose, ancient immense trees live in a forest full of vibrant ferns and rushing waterfalls. Big Basin Redwoods State Park encompasses 10,00...
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  • Boulder Creek, California

    Hike the Ocean View Summit Loop

    4.0
    6 mi / 600 ft gain
    This hike begins at the Big Basin park headquarters. If you're up for 6 miles through giant redwoods and along serene creeks, and with an ocean view, then this is the hike for you. Ocean view summit loop starts on the Gazos Creek Road bridge, next turn right on to the Middle Ridge Fire Road, whic...
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  • San Jose, California

    Explore Santa Teresa County Park

    4.5
    8.3 mi / 2053 ft gain
    The Santa Teresa County Park loop is perfect for wildlife viewing! Be ready to see deer, coyote, hawks, turkeys, pigs and cows. The trail is rated as moderate - be cautious with mud if you are visiting the park after a rain shower. Dogs are allowed in the park, but must be kept on leash.  There i...
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  • Boulder Creek, California

    Hike the Old Growth Redwoods Trail

    4.5
    0.5 mi
    Quick half-mile stroll through the old growth Redwoods that will show you the nature of the ever-living redwood tree.Redwoods are capable of withstanding storms, floods, fire, droughts, and even termites. These legendary trees can live for over 2,000 years and possess incredible strength, vigor, ...
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  • 21600 Big Basin Way, California

    Hike the Sequoia Trail at Big Basin Redwoods SP

    4.0
    4.3 mi / 600 ft gain
    This 4.3 mile hike in Big Basin Redwoods SP is a peaceful break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.   In the first half, there is a quick detour you can take to Sempervirens Falls.  Just listen for sounds of water, read the signs, and cross the road.  The detour itself is as far as cross...
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  • Los Gatos, California

    Hike Los Gatos Trail to Jones Trail Loop

    3.8 mi / 511 ft gain
    This trail winds its way along the Los Gatos Creek and ends at the Lexington Reservoir before looping back to the start. It is 3.8 miles and makes for a great way to get exercise and relax in nature. You can hear the creek as you hike, and can even go down to it. There is a lot of green foliage t...
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  • Morgan Hill, California

    Backpack to Coit Lake

    5.0
    26 mi
    This trail can be started from Coe Headquarters or Hunting Hollow Trailhead. The trail from Coe HQ is 2 miles longer, almost all elevation but provides beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. These directions will be starting from Coe HQ.Follow the loop around the parking area to the backpa...
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  • Morgan Hill, California

    Backpack to Mississippi Lake

    5.0
    26.4 mi / 3600 ft gain
    If you're tired of trying and failing to get reservations for backcountry camping around the bay area, then Henry Coe State Park is the perfect place to visit. No reservations need to be made prior to the trip. All you need to do is get to the HQ on the morning of your trip, get your permits and ...
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  • Sanborn County Park, California

    Hike Sanborn County Park via the San Andreas Trail

    4.0
    4.2 mi / 1282 ft gain
    This is a moderately rated 4.2 mile trail that winds through the redwoods west of Saratoga.  It features a dirt trail with tall trees and a creek.  The hike is very tranquil and there is lot s of greenery.  There are big rocks in the creek that can you can sit on.  People often meditate here as i...
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  • Los Gatos, California

    Hike the Saratoga Gap Trail

    4.6
    4.7 mi
    The Saratoga Gap Trail is relatively lightly trafficked trail that is good year round, although waterfalls peak in late winter and spring. Overall, this 4.7 mile partial loop hike is moderate, with about 1000 feet in elevation change. Trailhead elevation is about 3090 feet. The featured hike desc...
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  • Saratoga, California

    Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail

    4.5
    30.22 mi / 3409 ft gain
    Want to experience one of the bay area's most memorable backpacking trips? We've got the details to get you out on the trail. To start the trek, drop your car at the Castle Rock State Park Parking Lot, which is located ~2.5 miles south of the junctions of Highways 35 and 9 off of Highway 35. Not...
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  • Saratoga, California

    Backpack Castle Rock State Park

    4.7
    Castle Rock Trail Camp has a different policy than other backcountry camps in the area (i.e. campsites along Skyline to the Sea). This campground is open all year and is available on a first come, first served basis. If you can, grab a spot a Frog Flat Camp. To get to the camp, park your car at t...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Goat Camp via Twitchwell Flat Use Trail

    5.0
    9.2 mi / 3852 ft gain
    To find this trailhead, head down Highway 1 towards Limekiln State Park Campground. Between Lucia and Limekiln, there should be a shoulder off the side of the road to park overnight. Cross the street to the trailhead of Twitchwell Flat Use Trail. Bear in mind that there is abundant poison oak alo...
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  • Big Sur, California

    3 Branches of the Limekiln

    4.0
    1.98 mi / 696 ft gain
    The Limekiln Trails offer up a moderate hike with defined trails, creek crossings, and limited elevation. From the parking area, head east under the canopy of redwoods until you get to the bridge, where there’s a kiosk marking the trail. The three branches are ~0.5 miles each, making it easy to ...
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