If you wish to know the finest Nationwide Parks close to San Francisco, you’ve come to the precise place.
San Francisco is among the most lovely cities on the earth, however do you know that it is usually inside driving distance of among the finest Nationwide Parks within the nation? Whereas this wonderful metropolis is well-known for its sights and vacationer points of interest just like the Golden Gate Bridge, many individuals don’t understand that it’s the good place to see a number of nationwide parks close to San Francisco!
For these touring to California, the town of San Francisco could be a nice start line for exploring far more than simply massive cities. It’s strategically positioned very near many breathtaking areas to see, all inside a simple day’s drive!
Nationwide Parks Close to San Francisco
Other than the few nice nationwide parks discovered inside driving distance of San Francisco, there are additionally loads of Nationwide Leisure Areas, Nationwide Monuments, Nationwide Preserves, and State Parks to discover. I put collectively all these locations to offer you an inventory of areas and virtually limitless choices!
1. Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation Space
Distance: 10 miles, Driving time: 20 minutes
Golden Gate Nationwide Recreation Space is maybe the preferred vacationer vacation spot in San Francisco and simply essentially the most recognizable and iconic. This park encompasses over 80,000 acres and contains scenic views, totally different biospheres, and even historic websites.
A few of the extra outstanding and widespread of those websites embrace a museum commemorating the constructing of the Golden Gate Bridge, Level Bonita Lighthouse, and the notorious Alcatraz Island.
Other than these points of interest, this park has loads of scenic mountain climbing trails the place you possibly can get pleasure from seeing the plentiful wildlife. That is one park you don’t want to overlook, as it’s far more than simply seeing this historic landmark!
2. Muir Woods Nationwide Monument
Distance: 20 miles, Driving time: 40 minutes
Discovered solely 40 minutes from San Francisco, Muir Woods Nationwide Monument has grown in recognition over time and is now one of many Bay space’s largest points of interest. It’s the good vacation spot for nature and forest lovers.
Established in 1908, this park permits guests to hike amongst coastal redwoods, among the tallest timber discovered wherever on the earth.
With a number of mountain climbing trails and surreal forest groves, this place could be very talked-about, relying on the time of yr. You’ll want to arrive early to make sure a parking spot, that is one park you’ll not wish to miss!
3. Level Reyes Nationwide Seashore
Distance: 40 miles, Driving time: 1 hour
Being in California means some lovely ocean sights, and among the best ones is Level Reyes Nationwide Seashore. This place is residence to some wonderful cliffs and rocks with an ocean backdrop that gives among the most gorgeous views in the entire state.
Level Reyes additionally acts as a large coastal wildlife protect, defending over 1,500 totally different animal and plant species with its distinctive and delightful shorelines.
When visiting Level Reyes Nationwide Seashore, don’t neglect to go to Level Reyes Lighthouse.
Should you love animals, Level Reyes is the place to go to. Residence to the uncommon Tule elk, seal colonies, and migrating gray whales, you by no means know what sort of wildlife you would possibly see!
4. Pinnacles Nationwide Park
Distance: 125 miles, Driving time: 2.10 hours
If exploring and climbing massive cliffs, caves, and rocks sound like your thought of enjoyable, then Pinnacles Nationwide Park can be an excellent nationwide park to go to. Positioned within the coronary heart of the Salinas Valley, this park is filled with cliffs, caves, and constructions shaped by an historical volcano that erupted 23 million years in the past.
Whereas well-known for its mountain climbing and mountain climbing, this park can also be well-known for being one of many 4 locations the place critically endangered California condors are bred and launched into the wild.
Guests to this park will simply get their fill of pure wonders, nice mountain climbing trails, and ample wildlife. And solely a bit of over a two-hour drive from the town, this park makes for a superb day journey!
5. Level Lobos State Reserve
Distance: 120 miles, Driving time: 2 hours
Level Lobos State Reserve has been referred to as one of many biggest shorelines on the earth and is known as “the crown jewel of Califonia’s state parks.” Folks flock right here from all around the world to get pleasure from its diving, mountain climbing trails, and scenic ocean vistas.
The wildlife discovered at Level Lobos is world-class, and right here you’ll discover sea lions, sea otters, elephant seals, harbor seals, and even killer whales!
From migrating whales, ample wildlife, and coastal overlooks, there’s virtually no finish of gorgeous issues to see at Level Lobos State Reserve, and it is just a brief two-hour drive from San Fransisco!
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6. Pfeiffer Massive Sur State Park
Distance: 150 miles, Driving time: 2.30 hours
This wonderful state park is discovered proper the place California’s well-known redwoods meet their southernmost habitat, and the coastal surroundings is world famend due to the Massive Sur coastal drive that winds by means of it.
A few of the extra widespread points of interest at this park, other than the coastal drive, is Pfeiffer Seaside and McWay Falls. Each supply some wonderful surroundings and images alternatives!
Nonetheless solely a bit of over 2 hours away, Pfeiffer Massive Sur State Park is a lot shut sufficient to San Francisco for a fast day and even half a day journey to go to. You’ll not remorse visiting this lovely state park!
7. Yosemite Nationwide Park
Distance: 170 miles, Driving time: 3 hours
Obtain the official Yosemite Nationwide Park Map (PDF)
Yosemite Nationwide Park is among the most well-known parks in the USA, and lots of are stunned to be taught that San Francisco is situated solely 3 quick hours away. It’s residence to very large numbers of wilderness, granite cliffs, and among the most rugged terrains in California.
Yosemite has many nice locations to go to inside the park, together with some wonderful rivers and waterfalls. Simply be ready, as this park could be very busy from April to November.
It’s simple to see why hikers and photographers fall in love with a spot like Yosemite, and San Francisco might be the right staging level to go to this widespread nationwide park.
Are you planning an epic journey to Yosemite? Ensure that to test the articles beneath:
8. Lassen Volcanic Nationwide Park
Distance: 240 miles, Driving time: 3.30 hours
Lassen Volcanic Nationwide Park is one other nationwide park near San Francisco, and the freeway that runs by means of it is among the most breathtaking and scenic drives in the complete nationwide park system.
This freeway passes two lovely alpine lakes, and each Emerald Lake and Lake Helen will blow you away. For hikers, Bumpass Hell Path is notorious for being an excellent hike with some steaming sulfur swimming pools as a reward to see!
Hikers will love this wonderful park, and the surroundings has among the finest mountain and alpine views California gives.
9. Kings Canyon Nationwide Park
Distance: 240 miles, Driving time: 3.30 hours
Kings Canyon Nationwide Park sits proper subsequent to Sequoia Nationwide Park, however as a result of they’re so shut collectively, most individuals will go to them on the identical journey.
Kings gives views of the wonderful Kings Canyon, one of many deepest canyons within the nation, in addition to loads of totally different mountains, waterfalls, lakes, and mountain climbing trails to discover.
The terrain right here is similar to Yosemite Nationwide Park, with fewer individuals to deal with. It additionally has loads of tenting and horseback driving adventures for individuals who wish to discover it even additional!
10. Sequoia Nationwide Park
Distance: 260 miles, Driving time: 4 hours
As we talked about with Kings Canyon Nationwide Park, these two parks sit so shut collectively that they’re typically visited on the identical journey. However whereas Kings Canyon has its trademark canyon, Sequoia is known for its big timber.
Sequoia Nationwide Park is a land filled with big redwood timber, together with the world’s largest tree (by quantity) named Normal Sherman.
Guests to this park can wander across the groves of those big timber, discover mountain climbing trails, and luxuriate in scenic meadows and canyons. There are additionally some underground sights to discover referred to as Crystal Cave. Sequoia is properly definitely worth the drive from the town, as each location right here is breathtaking.
11. Mono Lake Tufa State Pure Reserve
Distance: 250 miles, Driving time: 4.30 hours
This reserve was created to protect the favored “tufa towers,” naturally occurring spires and knobs shaped by the realm’s freshwater springs and alkaline lake water. It additionally protects all of the native wildlife, together with the tens of millions of birds touring to Mono Lake yearly.
Mono Lake itself covers over 65 sq. miles and is over 1,000,000 years outdated. This makes it one of many oldest lakes in North America!
Due to how outdated it’s, the entire salt and minerals have constructed up within the lake and it is extremely salty. These have contributed to the entire wonderful towers and formations which can be seen right here.
12. Redwood Nationwide and State Parks
Distance: 320 miles, Driving time: 5.30 hours
Obtain the official Redwood Nationwide Park Map (PDF)
Whereas this is among the furthest drives from San Franciso, it is perhaps the one that’s the most price it! These parks are in a league of their very own, and the enormous redwood timber are one thing that everybody ought to see no less than as soon as of their lifetime.
Whereas Sequoia Nationwide Park has the largest (per quantity) timber on the earth, Redwood has the tallest timber on the earth.
With a lot wilderness and trails to discover, you possibly can spend an infinite period of time right here, and it nonetheless wouldn’t be sufficient. It is perhaps a stretch for a day driving journey, however it’s properly price it!
Nationwide Parks Close to San Francisco| Conclusion
When visiting nationwide and state parks, it will possibly typically be a problem to seek out the right metropolis to fly or journey to to be able to startyour adventurer. Fortunately, there are locations like San Francisco which can be in shut proximity to so many alternative and wonderful pure wonders!