A Guide to Muir Woods National
One of the most historic and well known historic
forests in the continental U.S, Muir Woods National
Monument is located off the Pacific coast, just
outside of San Francisco in Marin county, California.
Protecting 554 acres of forest, John Muir Woods is a
breathtaking nature preserve consisting of extensive
biodiversity with its rich ecosystem throughout the
forest. In particular, the Muir Woods National
Monument is known for its redwood forests, one of
a few remaining in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The Muir Woods National Monument is an old-
growth coastal redwood muir woods sunlightforest.
Due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the forest
is regularly shrouded in a coastal marine layer fog,
contributing to a wet environment that encourages
vigorous plant growth. The fog is also vital for the
growth of the redwoods as they use moisture from
the fog during drought seasons, in particular the dry
With trees aging anywhere from four-hundred
to eight-hundred years old, redwoods are
generally incredibly tall, with their height soaring
to around two-hundred fifty feet. Although it is
prohibited to camp within the national
monument, visitors are allowed to hike or bike
the trails to fully experience the endless wonder
of the redwood forest.
If you happen to be interested in hiking to the Muir
Wood National Monument as your final destination, be
sure to catch the Marin Stagecoach to the Mountain
Home Inn, which is close in proximity to the forest.
From the Mountain Home Inn it’s a two-mile or around a
one hour hike to Muir Woods on the Panoramic and
Canopy View trails. On this particular path, visitors have
the opportunity to see the gorgeous vistas of the ocean
alongside the beautiful redwood trees that complement
While parking can be bothersome for many,
one great tip to keep in mind when planning
your visit is to take the shuttle to the vast
nature preserve. Even though the shuttle is
quite convenient, please keep in mind that the
Muir Woods Shuttle is only operational the
spring and summer.
To avoid crowds, be sure to plan your visit to the
park either during the late winter or early spring.
While it is ideal to plan your trip around the summer,
also bear in mind that it is also equally important to
avoid visiting the national monument during holiday
weekends. During the springtime, visiting the park
after a light drizzle or a wet day is the perfect
opportunity to shoot some stunning nature shots to
capture the vibrant pale green leaves in and around
While the Muir Wood National Monument is by far
the most famous of all redwood national parks, it is
also a great idea to visit other nature reserves in the
area if time permits. Visit the second-growth
redwoods of Phleger Estate and enjoy one of the
most peaceful sites in the Golden Gate National
Parks. To explore other redwood destinations in the
Bay Area, be sure to visit the Butano State Park and
Redwood Regional Park.