Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
3.50 mi (5.63 km)
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During the active elephant seal season that extends from December through March, the only access to the Año Nuevo Coast Natural Preserve is via a ranger-led guided walk, and this walk follows the Año Nuevo Point Trail all the way out to the point. Any other time of year this trail is open for visitors to walk unaccompanied. Even though there are fewer seals during this time, there are still seals to be seen, and the walk also offers great scenery and a chance to experience a piece of the California Coast as it was over 150 years ago.

Starting at the Marin Education Center inside the Año Nuevo State Park entrance, the trail is wide and flat for about a mile to the gated entrance of the restricted area. Past this gate the trail alternates between firm gravel and soft sand until it nears the point, where there are numerous and changing paths through the dunes between South Point and North Point along Bight Beach.

Side trails from Año Nuevo Point Trail include the New Years Creek Trail and Cove Beach Trail, both of which lead to Cove Beach.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

State Park Fee

Pros

Flat, easy trail. Great ocean views. Seasonal elephant seals.

Cons

None.

Trailhead Elevation

100.00 ft (30.48 m)

Net Elevation Gain

30.00 ft (9.14 m)

Features

Historically significant
Lighthouse
Whale watching
Wildlife
Bird watching
Wildlife
Big vistas
Wildflowers

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Big Basin Redwoods State Park
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

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