Some of the Best Spots in Marin County
Jason Daniel Shaw
MARIN COUNTY – NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
Marin County is a beautiful stretch of land that is situated just north of San Francisco in northern California. From the north side of the Golden Gate to Bodega Bay, including Point Reyes National Seashore, Mt. Tamalpais and so many other must-see places, Marin County should be on everyone’s list of must-visit places.
GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE – MARIN COUNTY
Across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco lies the wonders of Marin County. Often tourists and visitors will only see one of the most famous bridges in the world from the San Francisco side. I would argue that the better view is actually from the Marin County side. From here, you can not only capture the beauty of the bridge itself but the rest of the San Francisco peninsula. Battery Spencer is the perfect spot for this. There is also a lot of history that can be explored here before continuing on into the Marin Headlands. On the way back from exploring all that Marin County has to offer, make sure to check out some of the amazing sunsets at the Golden Gate Bridge as well.
MARIN COUNTY BEACHES
I would suggest continuing on to Muir Beach and taking in the views both to the north and the south. As you drive along Highway 1, the rugged California coastline will offer spectacular views, eventually flattening out at Stinson Beach. Stinson Beach is a great stop for some food and relaxing. The aptly-named Panoramic Highway is a great option on the way back as it boasts panoramic views along with a drive through a beautiful grove of trees on the way up to Mt. Tamalpais. But first, continue on through the rest of the coastal Marin wonders.
TOMALES BAY – MARIN COUNTY
Tomales Bay is a body of water that creates a wedge between a major portion of Point Reyes National Seashore and the rest of California. You could spend a week driving Sir Frances Drake Blvd between Inverness and Point Reyes Station photographing all of the beautiful docks that sit along the shoreline. What has made Tomales Bay more famous is that it is home to the Point Reyes Shipwreck. I highly recommend having some lunch and taking your time as you pass through this area – there are many great finds.
CYPRESS TREE TUNNEL – POINT REYES
The Cypress Tree Tunnel in Point Reyes National Seashore is just one of the many places to visit in this photographer’s wonderland (Alamere Falls is another great place that we visited during this trip). The Cypress Tree Tunnel is the prefect place to get some moody photos and can be absolutely spectacular if the fog rolls in. During golden hour, the light can also be incredible. You never know what conditions you are going to get with the Cypress Tree Tunnel but that is part of the joy. Each time you visit, you can capture something different.
MT. TAMALPAIS – MARIN COUNTY
Mt. Tamalpais, or Mt. Tam as it is affectionally known to locals, is a spot that I didn’t know about for years after moving to California and having been to San Francisco many times. I learned about it from Instagram and the long exposures taken from up there during foggy days. I have been twice now and still yet to capture one of those photos. I have, however, seen some incredible views. Mt. Tamalpais is a haven for hikers and the views of San Francisco, the coastline and the rest of the northern California are to die for. I suggest spending some time here exploring and taking in the scenery. The views of San Francisco from Mt. Tamalpais are absolutely incredible!
I would love to hear about your suggestions for places in Marin County to see or if you have any questions, please send me a comment or message me on Instagram. Check out the remainder of our trip, including our train ride up from Los Angeles along the coast, our rainy Black Friday in San Francisco and our Alamere Falls hike.