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In this post, you’ll find the best hiking in Redwood National Park: from easy to moderate, long and short there’s something for everyone!
Combine really tall trees, beautiful greenery, cool northern California climate, and the beach and what do you get?! Redwoods National Park. We spent a day here over the summer during our epic 7 week road trip and even with cloudy, misty weather it fully exceeded my expectations.
The majority of our time spent out west was dedicated to hiking and this visit was no different. Redwoods National Park hiking is amazing because you are surrounded by these amazing, ancient, towering trees with beautiful lush forests and wildlife. The whole park is just an Instagram waiting to happen. The hiking ranges from easy to harder-than-you-would-expect-on-the-coast and will take you through a variety of landscapes!
This post outlines the best hiking in Redwood National Park that will allow you to see the best of the park—and if you’re lucky, wildlife! (We are huge wildlife spotting nerds) Be aware that “best” is subjective, but I tend to be super good at picking amazing hikes so you can trust this list is awesome. 😉
ABOUT REDWOOD National park
Redwood National Park (and also state park!) is located in Northern California just along highway 101 (like, you know, the same one as from ZOEY 101?! Anyone? No? Okay I’ll move on…) and is often referred to as the home of the world’s tallest trees. It’s true: redwoods ARE some of the world’s tallest trees but that’s not all this park is about! Redwood National park also protects woodlands, prairies, and coastline. I have to be completely honest, I had no idea the redwoods were located along the coast but it makes this park that. much. better.
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The park was founded in the 1960s and now is one of the most popular national parks in the country. I feel like everyone that’s familiar with the national parks knows of it as the place with towering trees, moody climate, and beautiful trails. As someone who has visited I will confirm that it is all that and much more (because of the beach I didn’t know was there, remember?)
how much time do you need in the park?
Getting to Redwood National Park will require a car, as most national parks do. There are a few options for lodging nearby but inside the park your options are camping or 8 rustic cabins. You can also stay at any of the various state parks around. I would recommend Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park for camping and book waaaaay in advance! Otherwise, stay in the nearby Humboldt County. There are plenty of options from luxury to budget. We stayed at Elk Country RV Resort and Campground and LOVED it. Waking up with elk in our “front yard” was a really special experience.
You can explore the park in 1-2 days. We only did a day visit due to time constraints during our 7 week US road trip. I felt it was sufficient but would always take another day! To experience some of the best Redwood National Park hiking, book a 2 day stay at the minimum! The main attraction of the park is the redwoods and hiking, so you can plan to focus most of your trip on outdoor adventure!
BEST HIKING IN REDWOOD NATIONAL PARK
Trillium Falls Trail – Trillium Falls is one of the most popular trails in the Redwood National Park hiking list, but trails are usually popular for a reason! As with most popular hikes, get there early to beat the crowds. You’ll see (of course) old growth Redwoods, namesake trillium flowers, and the other namesake small waterfall!
2.6 miles / loop / moderate
West Ridge Trail to Prairie Creek – for a longer hike, hit up the West Ridge Trail and take it to Prairie Creek Trail. As expected, you’ll experience a ridge on this trail and you can expect a good amount of elevation gain. But views and massive old growth trees everywhere?!? Worth it.
7.5 miles / loop / moderate
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Lady Bird Johnson Grove Trail (add Berry Glen to make more challenging) – Lady Bird Johnson Grove Trail is pretty historically significant. The area of Redwood National Park was contested in the 1960s. This trail is the same that many people walked while trying to protect the Redwoods. The namesake, Lady Bird Johnson, worked to conserve this awesome area. The trail is easy and 1.5 miles. If you want to make it more challenging, you can add on Berry Glen to include some inclines and fallen trees in your walk!
1.5 miles vs 6.0 miles / out and back / easy to moderate with add on
Tall Trees Grove Loop Trail – I included this trail because it’s in a more secluded area of the park… and you need a permit and a special ~lock box code~ to access the hike. Very cool, very James Bond. Most people say they don’t think they can be more impressed by the already impressive Redwoods until they get here.
3.3 miles / loop / moderate
Dog friendly hikes
The next couple of trails are NOT inside the park, but I included them because they are dog friendly!
Humboldt Lagoons – Humboldt Lagoons State Park is located in Orick, California (about ** miles from Redwood National Park!). The Humboldt Lagoons trail will take you to explore the largest lagoon system in the continental US!!! Neat. You’ll also encounter beautiful coastal views, over 200 bird species, and elk herds. This area was SO unique and nothing I expected to see in California!
5.9 miles / Out and back / Moderate / Dog friendly
Trinidad Head Trail Loop: Located in Trinidad State Beach, this coastal loop will take you on an easy hike with spectacular views. This trail is super popular, so keep that in mind when you take your pup!
1.7 miles / Loop / Easy / Dog friendly
Redwood National Park hiking provides some of the best views. There’s also awesome opportunities to view wildlife and see these unique trees that almost were totally logged down! This is one of the only places you can see the beautiful Redwoods and I’m so glad it is protected! The hiking trails featured in this post will satisfy your adventurous spirit and allow you to see the best of the park.
As always, comment below and tell me if you plan to do any of these hikes on this trip? And let me know if I missed any of your favorite hikes in Redwood National Park?
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