Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point

June 24, 2017 57 Comments 18 Photos

Hi there! After taking a week off to celebrate my 27th birthday (read my birthday post here: 27 Things You Might Not Know About Me!), then a second week off to throw a surprise party for my husband’s 30th birthday, I’m so ready to be back in the saddle! Ready to see more of Northern California with me–including some day trips near San Francisco?

So let’s review. So far, we’ve been exploring San Francisco, neighborhood by neighborhood:

Next, we’re going to start traveling outside of the city limits to take some day trips near San Francisco. Today, we’ll be just north of the city: catching gorgeous views from Vista Point, then wandering through breathtaking Muir Woods. Let’s go!

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco:

Vista Point

If you have a car and are looking to take day trips near San Francisco, it’s a good start to venture across the Golden Gate Bridge–both for the views you’ll get as you cross, and for the views of the city and the bridge from the other side. Vista Point is the first exit after the bridge, and it’s the perfect place to stop and take a few photos.

Discover the best views of the Golden Gate Bridge & more SF travel tips on #featherandflint! Click To Tweet
Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

The Golden Gate Bridge, as seen from Vista Point

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

The Golden Gate Bridge, as seen from Vista Point

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

The Golden Gate Bridge, as seen from Vista Point

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

San Francisco, as seen from Vista Point

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco

Muir Woods

Next, of course, we had to spend a few hours wandering through Muir Woods. This is one of the most beloved day trips near San Francisco. There are countless natural wonders to be seen in California; but my lovely travel companion, who’s lived in San Francisco for a few years now, knew that Muir Woods was a place that I’d deeply appreciate. (She was right!)

Muir Woods is a short 17-mile drive away, making it one of the most convenient day trips from San Francisco, too. I hope that San Francisco residents realize just how lucky they are to have a redwood forest waiting to be explored, right on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge! There are flat, paved trails that anyone can enjoy; and then there are narrow, elevated trails winding through the trees that more adventurous hikers can explore.

Explore the breathtaking beauty of Muir Woods with #featherandflint! Click To Tweet

What I loved about Muir Woods was the feeling of being dwarfed by nature–both physically and spiritually. Being surrounded by giant, ancient trees induces a hushed reverence over everyone that I’ve never before encountered. Even though you’re surrounded by people, you can hear the sound of birds calling to one another and a stream gradually making its way through the forest. It’s a profound experience that leaves you feeling fortunate to live in a world where such wonders exist.

Millions of years ago, redwoods and sequoias may have grown all across the United States. Today, however, they’re only found on the coasts of Northern California and Oregon. The logging industry had already torn through millions of acres of old growth forests when Theodore Roosevelt declared Muir Woods a national monument. It was named after John Muir, who spent his life fighting for the preservation of America’s most beautiful places and the establishment of the National Park System–a cause that’s as important in 2017 as it was in 1890.

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Muir Woods

Day Trips Near San Francisco: Muir Woods & Vista Point | Feather & Flint

Because it’s one of the most famous and easy-to-reach day trips near San Francisco, Muir Woods is visited by up to 6000 visitors each day when the weather’s nice. This means that you might have to wait a little bit for a parking spot. You can try visiting during off-peak hours, or you can just find your zen and be patient–it’s worth the wait!

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Guess what’s coming next? We’re going to wine country, y’all! Be sure to check back over the next few weeks to explore Napa Valley with me–the best is yet to come, in my opinion!

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57 Comments

  1. Reply

    Kristin Cook

    June 26, 2017

    Muir Woods looks amazing! It reminds me a lot of Asheville/Montreat NC, which is where I went to college. So many gorgeous trails near creeks and fallen trees to climb on. I love the trees in Muir Woods though! So much prettier than pines! haha

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I’ve actually been to Montreat before, and I know exactly what you’re talking about – very similar vibes!

  2. Reply

    jackie

    June 26, 2017

    yay! i was totally missing your sf posts! this must be a hidden gem because i lived an hour away from sf growing up and i have never been here! this is now on my wish list for next time we visit. thanks for sharing, these woods look really beautiful. thanks for taking us on your adventure!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Awww, you’re the sweetest – that makes me so happy to hear! And omg, you HAVE to check it out – it’s so worth a trip!

  3. Reply

    Rachel

    June 26, 2017

    I have always wanted to go to Muir woods! This just made me want to visit even more!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      You should absolutely go if you get the chance – it’s breathtaking!

  4. Reply

    Ref J

    June 26, 2017

    I too, love Muir woods. It is easy to spend hours upon hours there just taking in the beautiful views and exploring new trails. I haven’t stopped at Vista point and will have to the next time I am in SF.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I could totally have spent hours upon hours there and not gotten bored – and I’d go back time after time!

  5. Reply

    Angel

    June 26, 2017

    I haven’t been to San Francisco in over 20 years! It’s been a recent topic of conversation because I fell in love with the city and want to go back. I will be sure to check out some of these places. They look amazing!!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I hadn’t been since I was 4! You should absolutely add it to your list – I bet it’s changed so much since you were there!

  6. Reply

    Annie

    June 27, 2017

    San Fran is one of my favorite cities I’ve ever been to! There is so much to see and do! My mom lives a few hours north now and I can’t wait to get back out there!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I couldn’t agree more! I’m dying to go back and see even more of the city and the surrounding area – such a gorgeous, vibrant place.

  7. Reply

    Rose

    June 27, 2017

    I would love to visit this area so much! Your pictures of the Golden Gate and Muir Woods are stunning.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Thank you so much, Rose – that means a lot coming from you 🙂

  8. Reply

    Corey | The Nostalgia Diaries

    June 27, 2017

    Even though I’ve traveled to San Fransisco many times, I’ve never been to Muir Woods. It looks absolutely incredible! The next time I’m out there visiting my Aunt and Uncle, I’ll have to make them take me there! Your pictures are just incredible, too!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Thank you so much, Corey! Oh man, you have to take a trip up there – it’s so close to San Francisco, and I bet your daughter would love it!

  9. Reply

    Kate

    June 27, 2017

    Totally going on our to-do list! Just moved to the area and we have been looking for weekend/day trips so this will be perfect!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Oh my gosh, Kate, I’m so jealous! I would love to be able to explore this area more often – I’m a 6-hour flight away! Enjoy it – for me 🙂

  10. Reply

    Heather F

    June 27, 2017

    Beautiful post! Made me want to just hop in my car and go 🙂

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I wish I could, too – but it’s a bit of a hike from Boston 😉 I wish we had redwoods here!!

  11. Reply

    Elise Cohen Ho

    June 27, 2017

    I love Muir Woods. It feels so distant from the city but yet is so near.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      That’s one of the coolest parts about it, in my opinion! I hope San Francisco residents all realize how lucky they are to have a natural wonder just half an hour away!

  12. Reply

    Natasha

    June 27, 2017

    Wow – that’s a lot of visitors!! I’ve never seen redwoods or sequoias in person, which is kind of silly since I have family I could visit nearby!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Omg, you should cross it off your bucket list soon, then! I can’t wait to go back 🙂

  13. Reply

    Crystal // Dreams, etc.

    June 28, 2017

    Muir Woods looks so beautiful! Most (but not all) of the places I want to visit in California involve trees. I can’t help it! I just love them. 🙂

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Me too!! Especially trees overlooking the ocean… that’s my kryptonite!

  14. Reply

    Anne @ Like the morning sun

    June 28, 2017

    Gorgeous pics! And those giant trees are impressive! There’s nothing like that in the Netherlands, where I live – although it has it’s own kind of beauty. I wish I could visit the US once again someday.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      I’m dying to visit the Netherlands! Funny story – from where I live in the US, California is almost as far as parts of Europe! So this was a totally new experience for me, too 🙂

  15. Reply

    Rachel R Ritlop

    June 28, 2017

    I adore Muir Woods!! It’s such a magical place!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      “Magical” is seriously the best word to describe it – from the sheer size of the trees to the way that the light filters through the branches. So gorgeous!

  16. Reply

    Riva Treasure

    June 28, 2017

    I love the views of the bridge from that angle! I don’t think I have ever seen it from there! The woods are beautiful, looks like you guys had a great time!
    http://www.whatrivawore.com

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      We had the best time! It was so cool being able to see the city from a distance like that, and the bridge from an unusual angle – very worth a stop.

  17. Reply

    Lindsay

    June 28, 2017

    You’re giving me the travel bug! My husband loves the Muir Woods and I’m dying to go!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Oh man, you have to check it out, then! My husband isn’t the outdoorsiest guy, but even he loved it. I was in heaven!

  18. Reply

    Kristine

    June 28, 2017

    I’ve been dying to go to San Francisco! Muir Woods looks like a place I would totally want to get lost in! Great photos.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Thanks, Kristine! I absolutely recommend visiting both – there’s something for everyone in the Bay Area!

  19. Reply

    Andrea

    June 28, 2017

    I’ve been to San Francisco several times but I’ve never been to Muir Woods! (Slapping myself right now)🙈 I will definitely go there next time I visit San Francisco. This post just made me want to go there!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Hahaha omg, well now you know to make a point to visit next time you go! So happy to have introduced you 😉

  20. Reply

    Krysten

    June 28, 2017

    I have lived in San Francisco for almost 7 years and still have yet to go to Muir Woods. I don’t know why, I just never have time I guess. I’m definitely going to have to make time and go that way!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Omg, you have to go!! It’s only half an hour away! I definitely recommend going during off-peak hours, though, so it’s easier to find parking–it’s probably perfect on weekdays or first thing in the morning on the weekend.

  21. Reply

    Kate

    June 28, 2017

    Great article on the Muir Woods! I totally agree that I love the feeling of being completely dwarfed by nature. Can’t wait for your next article on Napa Valley! I’ve been dying to visit CA.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Thank you so much, Kate! I felt the same way about California, and I still do about the parts that I didn’t get to visit – there’s so much natural beauty, and so many intriguing attractions!

  22. Reply

    Natalie

    June 28, 2017

    Oh wow! I’d love to go to the Muir Woods! So beautiful 🙂

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      You absolutely should if you get the chance – it’s like nowhere else I’ve ever been!

  23. Reply

    Nancy at Miles For Family

    June 28, 2017

    I’m considering going to Muir Woods when we visit San Francisco in a few weeks!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      You have to!! It’s only half an hour from the city, and it’s the perfect way to spend half a day! I hope you love it 🙂

  24. Reply

    Amanda Frazier | The Light Owl

    June 28, 2017

    Oh man, Muir Woods is a dream! I can’t wait until I make time to go there.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      You would absolutely love it!! I hope you get to go someday!

  25. Reply

    kallie

    June 29, 2017

    Wow, the Muir Woods are seriously BREATH-TAKING! Thanks for sharing these pics!

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Yay, I’m so glad you liked it, Kallie!! Thanks for reading 🙂

  26. Reply

    Mjchristine

    June 29, 2017

    I never thought that Muir Woods looked that nice! that would be our next place to explore! 🙂

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      You absolutely should if you’re in the area – the pictures can’t even do it justice because the trees literally don’t fit in a single shot, hahah!

  27. Reply

    Courtney A. Casto

    July 1, 2017

    Stunning photos! My brother lives in San Francisco and you’ve inspired me to visit soon. I will request a trip to Muir Woods for sure. I used to live in Seattle and I miss being surrounded by water. It’s so calming and beautiful.

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Ahhh, I’ve always wanted to explore the Pacific Northwest! You’d love Muir Woods for sure – I hope you get a chance to go soon 🙂

  28. Reply

    Suzanne Spiegoski

    July 5, 2017

    You’re definitely having me want to check out Muir Woods! xo, Suzanne http://www.suzannespiegoski.com

    • Reply

      Robin

      July 8, 2017

      Good – that’s exactly what I was hoping to do 🙂 Thanks for reading, Suzanne!

  29. Reply

    Dee

    July 20, 2017

    OK…the pictures are STUNNING!!!!!!! TOTALY took my breath away! I am a mountain person and have a weak spot for anything green!
    Reading your post I could not help but think about the Lorax and the beautiful Trafula trees (LOVE LOVE LOVE Dr. Suas) I wonder if these woods were his inspiration?
    And last thing: cool tattoo!

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