San Diego has stunning views from the hills to the mountains to the sea and everything in between. And thankfully there are myriad walking trails to enjoy so you can see these vistas up close. Here is a list of five trails from easy to moderate to experience alone or with your family.

Los Peñasquitos Canyon Trail – EASY

This flat trail has an elevation gain of 164 feet and the loop length is just over seven miles. During certain times of the year, you can see pools of water, a waterfall and wildflowers. This trail can get busy on the weekends, so best to attempt mid-week early in the day to avoid crowds.

Sunset Cliffs Park Trail – EASY

This trail is just under two miles and has an elevation gain of 150 ft. It boasts pretty coastal views and convenient parking for when you arrive. Some have called it “one of San Diego’s best short hikes.” Again, it can get busy, so plan to attempt during a not-so-busy time. Dogs on a leash are allowed.

Father Junipero Serra Trail – EASY

Many people prefer to call this a 4.5-mile path a walk instead of a hike, simply because it’s paved. During the spring, it boasts beautiful wildflowers. It’s an in-and-out trail with a slight elevation of 305 feet. It is dog and kid friendly. 

Climbers Loop Trail – MODERATE

Also busy at times (rock climbers congregate here), this trail has a bit more elevation gain – 547 feet. It’s a 1.8-mile loop and there is parking available. It has some interesting rocky areas and stairs to climb, and it offers an uphill workout.

Oak Canyon to Grasslands Trail – MODERATE

During certain times of the year, hikers are rewarded with a little river along this trail. It has an elevation gain of 344 feet and a lot of open areas. Because of this, it can get hot, so plan accordingly with sunblock and lots of water. This trail is good for birdwatching.

To get more information about the specific location and daily updates on any of these trails, look them up on the internet or join an online group like Make sure to bring lots of water with you and enjoy the surroundings!

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