My Favorite Hikes in San Diego, CA

My Favorite Hikes in San Diego, CA


You can park within the Lake Poway parking zone for free of charge during the week. The trailhead begins right at the top of Lake Poway Road by the lake.

Here are some key tips! Make sure you wear sunscreen or a hat as most of the hike isn’t shaded. Try to start the hike early within the morning and confirm to bring many water and snacks! This particular hike is heavily trafficked on the weekends, so be prepared to face in line to urge the classic chip rock photo. Plan for around four hours for this hike-obviously the way down will be much faster than the way up.

This hike is great for an experienced hiker or runner who is looking to get a hard workout in. It is definitely doable for the less experienced, but make sure to take caution and prepare appropriately for this long hike. Lastly, on a different note, if you have time make sure to check out the Mt. Woodson castle nearby for another scenic site.


If you are looking for a casual hike/walk near the coastline then Torrey Pines is perfect for you. Torrey Pines is about all along Torrey Pines state beach located in La Jolla, CA. There are multiple places to park once you arrive to the hiking site. You will see many cars parked along the beach side (for free) otherwise you pays a little fee to park within the South or North Beach Lots.

Once you park, you’ll hike up a paved road, that has dirt trails on each side , until you reach the highest . At the highest of Capitol Hill you’ll find a visitors center and museum shop. From there, you can walk through a multitude of trails. My personal favorite trail is to try to to the Razor Point to Yucca to Beach trail. This walk gives you the opportunity to enjoy a decent portion of the Reserve and then end up on the beach. If you choose to hike down to the beach from here, be warned it is a steep hill to get down with steep steps. Check out THIS website for a list of all the trails along with a map.


The trail begins at the top of the parking zone and you’ll begin to go west.

From the trailhead, you’ll need to skip the barrier and start your hike. The trail head begins as “Eagle Peak trail” so don’t be alarmed. About ⅔ of a mile into your hike you’ll reach a junction-at that time left. You should now be ready to view the waterfalls off within the distance. Expect this hike to take at least 4.5hrs (not including the time you spend at the bottom). Once you reach the bottom, you can hop in the pools and cool off. Feel free to climb your high to the highest “pool” just be careful!


This waterfall is very seasonal though. However, the lake is always there to swim in!

Day permits ARE required for this hike and you can purchase them HERE for $10. Make sure to require many any water when doing this hike, especially during the summer months because it can become extremely popular within the valley. Oh and don’t forget your swimsuit , but no need for a towel as you’ll lay out and dry off on the rocks.


Whenever I’m going home to go to my mom, we always find yourself doing this hike. This hike isn’t near the ocean or within the trees, but instead it’s smack dab within the middle of the town , but yet still a gorgeous hike. Also, a great workout!

You will begin hiking on a mud pathway, which can eventually cause a paved road. You will pass through a neighborhood and then get back on to a dirt pathway. Bring a little picnic and enjoy your time at the top. It can get quite warm on a sunny day.


Julian is one of the cutest little towns and this hike is not too far from it. The hike begins across the street from Paso Picacho Campground. You will need to park within the campgrounds as there’s nowhere else to park.

Plan to hike for about 2-3 hours. The trail is well maintained and well marked. When you near the highest you’ll notice a staircase leading up to the height . Head that direction and walk up the stairs. Once you reach the highest of the steps there’s a lookout point with guardrails.

They offer homemade pies, pumpkin patches, hot apple cider, and cute cafes. Check out THIS website for more activities in Julian!

Alright, well there you have it! There are so many to choose from, but these are definitely my top hikes that I have repeatedly done! Get out there and stay active!

Alright, well there you have it! There are so many to choose from, but these are definitely my top hikes that I have repeatedly done! Get out there and stay active!

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