Activities in the Parks

Can’t Choose Your Own Adventure? Start Here and Go!

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With hundreds of miles of trails threading through 37 distinct sites across 80,000 acres of the Golden Gate National Parks, it can be hard to decide where to go and what to do. Let the Parks Conservancy’s experts be your guide! We’ve carefully curated our favorite hikes, walks, and excursions to share with you and your loved ones. There’s something (and some place) for everyone! We reveal some of the natural wonders and historical highlights you’ll experience along the way, but there are plenty more surprises for you to discover. So browse below, then grab your boots and backpack. Your national parks are waiting.

Green Gulch Farm
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

2.82 miles round-trip
To get to the trailhead, you'll need to make your way into the Green Gulch Farm. Go past the left side of the farm, and you'll start an ascent. You'll be working around to the eastern slope of the hill, then as you come back around toward the west you'll...
Soaring red-tailed hawk
Hiking
  • Hikes
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate With stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco beyond, Hawk Hill Trail brings visitors to the top of the Marin Headlands . During migration season, Hawk Hill lives up to its name with dozens, sometimes hundreds, of hawks spotted in a day. Wheelchair accessible.
GGRO Hawkwatchers spy the skies from Hawk Hill
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

0.21 miles round-trip
Watch hawks trace circles in the sky from rolling hills in the Marin Headlands . Besides its widescreen vistas of the Pacific and the Golden Gate, Hawk Hill offers fascinating wildlife experiences. It is the best place to witness the fall raptor migration with the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory ,...
Hikers explore a newly built segment of the Hawk Hill Trail
Trail

Length

0.20 miles round-trip
Some of the most eye-popping vistas in the Bay Area—beloved by Golden Gate Raptor Observatory staff and volunteers who annually monitor the fall migration from Hawk Hill—are available to individuals with a wide range of abilities.
Coyote in Rodeo Valley
Hiking
  • Hikes
Take Golden Gate 70/80 from Civic Center in San Francisco to Marin City transfer station. A short walk through a residential neighborhood will lead you to the Pacheco Fire Road trail head. The trail begins under the cover of gorgeous eucalyptus trees, but quickly becomes exposed to the sun as...
Trail work on the Heather Cutoff Trail on National Trails Day
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

2.67 miles round-trip
Start at the southern end of the Coastal South Trail and head east. The trail starts out dropping on a fairly straight trail. Soon, the very tight switchbacks will start and continue, and proceed until you are dropped out in a flat field. Head to your right, looking for a...
Poppies overlooking Fort Cronkhite and Rodeo Beach
Hiking
  • Birding
Beautiful ocean views abound as you meander through picturesque Headlands scenery. This hike to Hill 88, the launch site for Cold War missiles, is a joy in spring: Wildflowers everywhere, great views, no fog. The views offshore on a clear day are amazing, and the highlight is seeing a pond...
Poppies overlooking Fort Cronkhite and Rodeo Beach
Trail
Difficulty: Moderate

Length

2.96 miles round-trip
During the Cold War, anti-aircraft missile stations were constructed on the northern and southern sides of Rodeo Lagoon in the Marin Headlands . Radar sites were placed atop Hawk Hill and Hill 88. When the military decommissioned these stations, they left the remnants of the buildings and structures in place...
Visitors stroll through Muir Woods
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

1.41 miles round-trip
Most hikers utilize this trail to complete the shorter loop through the Muir Woods National Monument . This direction is a gradual climb and connects with the Redwood Creek Trail at the end of the valley. Expect a good amount of traffic going in both directions. The trail is well-maintained...
Fog rolls over the Marin Headlands
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

3.26 miles round-trip
This trail segment, technically part of the Coastal Trail, takes visitors past jaw-dropping views of the Marin Headlands and valleys, on the way to a beautiful lookout point and, beyond that, Black Sands Beach. In the spring, you're treated to a stunning trailside display of wildflowers. But always be prepared...
Golden Gate Bridge at sunrise from Kirby Cove
Trail

Length

2.25 miles round-trip
The steep, mile-long trail to the cove begins at the parking area above Battery Spencer on Conzelman Road—eye-level with the Golden Gate Bridge 's towers—and descends through a grove of cypress, eucalyptus, and pine.
Rodeo Lagoon view toward Marin Headlands Visitor Center
Trail
Difficulty: Easiest

Length

3.18 miles round-trip
Rodeo Lagoon offers habitat for birds, butterflies, and bobcats—as well as miles of backcountry and coastal trails.

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