San Rafael, California

Looking for the best hiking in San Rafael? We've got you covered with the top trails, trips, hiking, backpacking, camping and more around San Rafael. The detailed guides, photos, and reviews are all submitted by the Outbound community.

Top Hiking Spots in and near San Rafael

  • Glen Ellen, California

    Sonoma Ridge Trail

    9.2 mi / 1955 ft gain
    Sonoma Ridge Trail is a beautiful 9.2-mile out-and-back hike located near Glen Ellen, California. This hike is moderately difficult, with about 1955 feet in elevation change. 95% of the trail is covered in forest shade. Important Notes:Bikes and Horses are permitted on the trails. Dogs are NOT p...
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  • Glen Ellen, California

    Wolf House in Jack London SP

    There is a museum in "The House of Happy Walls" which Mrs. London built in redwood grove find park information, exhibits and a small sales area there. A nearby trail leads to Jack London’s grave and to the remains of "Wolf House," London’s dream house which was destroyed by fire in 1913. The par...
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  • Napa, California

    Alston Park Loop Trail

    2.76 mi / 184 ft gain
    Alston Park Loop Trail, located in Napa, California, is a 2.76-mile loop trail that offers a moderate level of difficulty for hikers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and running and is accessible year-round. The trail is well-maintained and clearly marked, making it suitable for ...
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  • Inverness, California

    Watch the Sunset at Point Reyes Lighthouse

    3.7
    From San Francisco, drive north over the Golden Gate Bridge and onto the scenic Route One. Plan to spend a full day on the round trip if you're going for the first time; along the drive, you'll most likely want to stop every ten minutes to check out the charming seaside towns or the stunning coas...
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  • Glen Ellen, California

    Corridor Ridge Loop Trail

    4.0
    2.48 mi / 289 ft gain
    Corridor Ridge Loop Trail is a loop trail where you may see wildflowers located near Glen Ellen, California.
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  • Inverness, California

    Tomales Point Trail

    4.7
    9.47 mi / 1165 ft gain
    This hike will take you through the Tule Elk Preserve in Point Reyes Nation Seashore, and offers fantastic views of Bodega and Tomales Bay, as well as the Pacific Ocean. Start at the Tomales Point Trailhead near the Historic Pierce Point Ranch. Follow the trail for roughly three miles. This trai...
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  • Walnut Creek, California

    Sugarloaf Open Space Loop

    1.91 mi / 243 ft gain
    Sugarloaf Open Space Loop is an almost 2-mile loop for hiking, running and walking. This trail is relatively easy and takes under one hour to hike. This loop is dog friendly. 
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  • Pacifica, California

    Montara Mountain Trail

    5.0
    6.77 mi / 1900 ft gain
    Montara Mountain Trail is a loop trail that takes you through a forest out to ocean views at the top of Montara Mountain. This hike located near Pacifica, California. and can be accessed from Highway 1 as well. If you're looking to do a similar loop hike from the coast, consider Montara Mountain ...
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  • Inverness, California

    McClures Beach

    1.44 mi / 243 ft gain
    This beach is really easy to get to. Just follow Pierce Point Road until you see the sign to the beach. It's an easy hike down from the parking lot.  There is very little shade, so make sure to bring some sunscreen. Be extremely cautious with getting into the water. There is likely underwater cu...
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  • Burlingame, California

    Hike the Ed Taylor Loop Trail in Mills Canyon

    4.0
    1.4 mi / 300 ft gain
    This hike can be done at any time of year. Hiking in winter and spring means that many varieties of wildflowers will be present, and the creek will have much more water. Summer and fall mean higher temperatures and drier conditions, but the hike is still a pleasant experience. Begin the hike at t...
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  • Half Moon Bay, California

    Gray Whale Cove Loop

    5.0
    1.22 mi / 518 ft gain
    Starting at the parking lot adjacent to Gray Whale Cove State Beach, proceed to the start sign indicating "Grey Whale Cove Trail". GWCT is a fun brisk hike with slight elevation gain that should be easy enough to take a small group or even children to. Take note of the tight spaces you may encou...
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  • Half Moon Bay, California

    Gray Whale Cove Trail

    4.5
    2.23 mi / 367 ft gain
    Gray whale cove trail is a splendid, short, and easy hike for the entire family with beautiful ocean views. The starting point is conveniently located near a parking lot that accesses Montara State Beach. From the south end of the parking lot, follow the trail up through the coastal scrub. Within...
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  • Half Moon Bay, California

    Montara Mountain North & Middle Peaks Loop

    4.3
    7.22 mi / 1929 ft gain
    NOTE: as of 2019, North Peak has been fenced off around the installation of a radio tower and weather station. Additionally, the summit has been found to be a habitat for the endangered San Bruno elfin butterfly. The Gray Whale Cove State Beach is a popular seaside trail that’s just 20 minutes s...
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  • Moraga, California

    Bollinger Creek Loop Trail

    1.43 mi / 213 ft gain
    Las Trampas Regional Wilderness offers an extensive trail system for hikers, horseback riders and mountain bikers. The trail is open year round and dogs are allowed. The Las Trampas and Bollinger faults spread apart to reveal a wonderful wilderness area with ancient remnants of beaches. The entir...
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  • Half Moon Bay, California

    McNee Ranch to Planet of the Apes

    4.88 mi / 1427 ft gain
    McNee Ranch to Planet of the Apes is a 4.8 mile trail located near Montara State Beach that offers ocean views when it is not too cloudy.  You can get amazing views when you hike up above the clouds.  This hike follows one of the main trails up the mountain, but there are many smaller trails to e...
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  • Walnut Creek, California

    Southern Lime Ridge Loop

    4.0
    5.57 mi / 1089 ft gain
    The Southern Lime Ridge Loop is a trail system located near Walnut Creek, CA. There is a parking lot at the trailhead located across the street from the Boundary Oak Golf Course. The trail is fairly exposed with limited shade, so bring appropriate sun protection especially on the warmer days.  D...
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