The art of distressing comes naturally under the canopy of California’s giant redwoods. California’s Redwood Coast which ensures each breathes to restore serenity and perspective enables you to indulge in the time-honoured cure i.e. forest bathing. The Japanese have coined the practice of “Forest Bathing” but the concept somehow proliferated in California as well. Muir Woods which has become of the best places to practice “Forest Bathing” in the enormity of the tree trunks has gradually taken the place of a pilgrimage in the presence of the ancient trees.
Wandering across the world’s tallest trees is a splendid experience possible only in Northern California and a small part of Southern Oregon. Beautifully perched just 12 miles north of San Francisco on Mount Tamaulipas State Park, is surrounded by a lush green Carpet of Redwood Sorrel and Fern. The trees which are next to skyscraper induce you to crane your neck to see the treetops and make you feel as small an insect. And yes, at that very moment you will find yourself a part of an ancient cathedral.
One of the last stands of old growth redwoods standing proudly along the Pacific Coast, Muir Woods has eventually become a national treasure. The place which holds utmost significance in preservation started by William and Elizabeth Kent, who purchased the extensive land of Redwood Creek in the year 1905 from the Tamalpais Land & Water Co. The trees were initially eyes by the loggers and the place seemed ideal for a dam. But the plans were halted by Congressman and naturalist Willian Kent when he donated 295 acres to the Federal Government. In 1908, President Roosevelt made the site as a national monument after the name of John Muir, the naturalist as well as the founder of environmental Organisation the Sierra Club.
Activities to do in Muir National Monument
Muir Woods which is home to tall damp trees, slow-moving rivers and most probable elves from The Lord of the Rings. In the vicinity of Muir Woods, you will find the younger sibling of the National Monument i.e. Muir Beach. The place just mesmerizes the mind and soul of the visitors.
First Stop at Mill Valley Coffee Shop
It is always advisable to grab some breakfast before wandering among the ancient stand of the World’s tallest trees. You may order some waffles and hash browns and you are simply at the heaven.
Plunge into the mystic forest
The drive into Muir Woods is filled with steep hills and curvy roads. Roll down your windows and enjoy the fresh mountain air. When entering the park, you won’t be having too many trails to pick. So you can walk through the gates and advised to stick to the casual path. After one to two-mile loop, you will be seeing plenty of nature. In case you are yearning for more, then continue onto Cathedral Grove.
Hike up to Cardiac Hills
The Dipsea Trail is a 2-mile hike up to reach the top of aptly Cardiac Hill. It is always advisable to come midweek or arrive early morning in order to avoid crowds.
Refill again at Muir Woods Café and Gift Shop
Grab some snacks and coffee and take all the great photos from the day. This is the most wonderful thing to do where everyone is turned into a pro photographer.
Head to Muir Beach
After walking through Redwood Creek Trail, this will take you to Muir Beach followed by the Pacific Coast Highway. Get ready for some exhilaration which will definitely blow your senses. Basically, a special cove of sandy goodness which is neither a massive nor a small beach. You can enjoy the undisturbed view of the Pacific Ocean.
Operating hours and Seasons
Muir Woods is open through the year. Admission is free and no other reservations are required. But the opening hours are dependent upon the season and the hours of sunlight. So the opening hours change throughout the seasons. ;
- From November 6th to January 28th, Muir Woods is open from 8:00am to 5:00 pm.
- From January 29th to March 11th, Muir Woods is open from 8:00am to 6:00 am.
- From March 12th to September 16th, Muir Woods is open from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- From September 17th to October 7th, the park is open from 8:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.
- From October 8th to November 4th, the park is open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
These times are seasonal and are subject to changes, so it is advisable to visit the website to get up-to-date information.
Tips for visiting Muir Woods National Monument
Summer is the busiest time for Muir Woods where you will find roads leading to Muir Woods congested. Since there is a number of construction projects and events occurring, so it is advisable the follow the tips:
- Go for the Muir Woods shuttle offered on Saturdays, Sundays and some holidays during the summer only.
- Either arrive very early or later in the day as Mid-day is always crowded.
- Weekdays are always better than Weekend. You will find early morning and late afternoon better than mid-day.
- Muir Woods is not the only park to visit. The Redwood range encompasses the coast from Monterey to the Oregon Border.
- Go for a commercial Tour Bus as they are familiar with road conditions and the best time to visit Muir Woods.
Get privileged rides
Global Tours takes you from San Francisco across Golden Gate Bridge, past the Marin Headlands and enters into the magical world of Redwood forest known as Muir Woods. Taking care of all your transportation needs, we offer high-end vehicles for any sized group. We are the best option for affordable private transportation. Get the luxurious trip in our latest fleets with courteous, respectful and helpful chauffeurs.