San Diego area residents and visitors are in for a special treat in February! Pick up your Museum Month discount pass at any of the libraries listed at the bottom of this page or when you stay at...
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, located on the cliffs above Torrey Pines State Beach, is a 1,750 acre reserve dedicated to preserving its namesake, the Torrey Pine tree and other indigenous wildlife in its native environment. A coastal wilderness of pine forests and sandstone canyons, the park has a series of well-kept trails that wind along the cliffs offering breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. With both easy, family-friendly paths and more advanced trails, the park provides a great hiking experience for all levels.
Virtually everything in Torrey Pines is protected, from the Peñasquitos River Valley on the east side of the highway, to the Natural Reserve lands on the west, to the Underwater Ecological Reserve offshore. The world-famous Torrey Pines Golf Course helps to safeguard the southern end of the bluffs from development while the rugged cliffs do their part to discourage access and crowds.
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve is home to approximately 3,000 of our nation's rarest pine tree—Pinus torreyana, which only grows here and on Santa Rosa Island off the coast near Santa Barbara. The park preserves not only the trees, but also one of the last great salt marshes and waterfowl refuges in Southern California.
Eight miles of trails offer a variety of distances and different experiences. Here are a few popular trails:
From Interstate 5, exit Carmel Valley Road west to Torrey Pines Road south (aka Highway 101 or Pacific Coast Highway). There are two parking options within the State Park at the south end of the beach. An entrance fee ($10-20 per vehicle, depending on the day) is collected at the gate which is open from 8:00 AM until sunset daily. The lower, beach level lot is directly beyond the gate, with additional parking around the park headquarters and trailheads at the top end of the road. You may also find free parking along Hwy 101. The lower parking lot and free parking along Hwy 101 provide a great workout from the walk up the steep hill to the start of the hiking trails.
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