The Bay Area is full of beautiful scenery, and many local parks fall under the umbrella of beautiful places to visit. Whether you are looking for a place to sit down and read a book or a breathtaking setting to picnic with your significant other, these relaxing parks in the Bay Area are sure to soothe and rejuvenate with their natural settings and peaceful atmospheres. After soaking up the healing qualities of nature, you can retreat to the Mill Rose Inn for an extended calming California stay.
Top 5 Parks in the Bay Area for Relaxing
Golden Gate Park
When looking for the best parks in the Bay Area, at the top of the list is the Golden Gate Park, which gets around 13 million visitors annually. The 1,017-acre dreamy oasis is full of lush gardens, artistic monuments, picnic groves, and wooded trails. The park also hosts an array of cultural events, such as concerts and sports activities. For those individuals who prefer to relax by engaging in an outdoor sport, such as kayaking, archery, polo, or golf, this park is perfect, offering all those amenities and more. The beautiful landscaping is another attraction, from the Japanese Tea Garden to the Garden of Shakespeare’s Flowers.
Wildcat Canyon Regional Park
Covering almost 2,500 acres from the Tilden Nature Area to Alvarado Park, the Wildcat Canyon Regional Park is full of luscious landscapes. Set up a blanket, lay in one of the rolling meadows, and let the breeze blow over your sunkissed shoulders. With so much space, there is a guaranteed quiet nook to spend your afternoon, while historic stonework near Wildcat Creek provides a great location for picnicking and exploring.
Jack London State Historic Park
With beautiful historic buildings that include Jack London’s cottage and the House of Happy Walls Museum, the Jack London State Historic Park is a forested retreat and a slice of the past simultaneously. Probably the most famous of the Bay Area parks, it houses preserved buildings and park trails great for biking, hiking, and horseback riding. And with such gorgeous landscape views, the park is wonderful for taking an artsy day to yourself. Let the canvas and paints capture your surroundings.
There are so many great spaces for picnicking as well, including several winding back-country trails with different terrains and a variety of scenery. To engage in a bit of the history that infuses the property, take a private guided tour or download the park audio tour app and make some discoveries on your own. Regardless of what you decide to do, be sure to soak up the encompassing nature and learn a little something from it. Jack London wouldn’t want it any other way.
Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Preserve
If you want to see a 1,400-year-old tree or a 310-foot-tall tree, look no further than the Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Preserve. As one of the most awe-inspiring of the parks in the Bay Area and even of California’s state parks, this redwood forest will take your breath away with its age and beauty. The park has a designated picnic area, but you might prefer to pack a lunch and eat beneath the trunk of a giant redwood. The preserve offers the opportunity for a peaceful moment in nature, and sometimes, there is no better place to be.
Half Moon Bay State Beach
Who said a park had to be green? There are several stretches of beach along the California coastline, and Half Moon Bay State Beach is one of these. With ocean views and cathartic waves, this beach is a slice of paradise with a calming atmosphere. Though sunny summer days offer sunbathing opportunities, a winter escapade on the sandy shores can bring about a serene solitude unlike any other. There is plenty of space to think as the wind blows over your shoulders and along the four miles of shore.
For more information on inspiring sites in the Bay Area, download our free Vacation Guide.
Relax at Mill Rose Inn
After a day spent exploring the region’s best parks, come back to the Mill Rose Inn where you can explore our own beautiful gardens and feel pampered by our extraordinary personal service, warm hospitality, and meticulous attention to detail. Our award-winning bed and breakfast in Half Moon Bay offers guests sinfully comfortable rooms and suites as well as easy access to the shops, galleries, restaurants and other fantastic things to do in this vibrant region.