While Redwood National Park is usually at the top of most people’s bucket lists, Redwood States Parks are also some of the best places to see redwood trees. Not only do these state park echo the magnificence of the nearby National Park, they make up a huge percentage of the California Redwood park system. Spanning from Big Sure all the way up to the Oregon border, Redwood State Parks offer spectacular stands of giant redwoods that one simply must visit in order to fully experience California’s Redwood Coast. Without further ado, here are 3 of the best places to see redwood trees in California.
Prairie Creek Redwood State Park
Do your soul a favor and go here! The towering redwoods and giant ferns found in this park are absolutely gorgeous. Hiking trails are plentiful here as well. With its mix of forest and open grasslands visitors also get the opportunity to see elk grazing. It’s all just magical.
Be sure to take a drive on Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway among the soaring redwood trees. It’s a paved two-lane road about 9 miles long, with many pull-outs for viewpoints, photo ops and trail heads. Get suggestions at the Prairie Creek Visitor Center for trails suited to your specific needs or desires. But whatever you do, do not miss the Prairie Creek Trail which can be substantially less busy.
Fern Canyon is by far the most popular destination within this particular park. It is aptly named for the ferns growing on 50-foot high walls. Fern Canyon is considered by many to be an unforgettable natural wonder. But Prairie Creek Redwood State Park is so much more than Fern Canyon. Visit for yourself to discover the magic that abounds here.
Patrick’s Point State Park
Patrick’s Point is a little-known state park that offers fine beaches, hiking trails, and even a re-creation of a Yurok village. This park provides a great coastal drive with lookouts high above the ocean. March-June you can easily spot migrating grey whales just offshore. A wonderful place to spend the day hiking along the cliffs or hunting for agates on Agate Beach.
This park has A LOT to offer and for everyone; rock climbers, new hikers, paved walking paths, and more challenging hikes. One of the shorter and more spectacular trails is Wedding Rock. From this massive rock that sits along the edge of Pacific Ocean you can take in stunning views of the forest and coastline.
Patrick’s Point is easy to get to, there is plenty of parking, and a very nice visitors center. Truly one of California’s hidden gems!
Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park
Want to see old growth Redwood trees? Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park is the spot. Located just minutes outside of Crescent City, Jedediah Smith State Park is a gorgeous deep redwood forest, with glorious summer swimming. It’s hard to beat the beauty of this area. There aren’t many place like this on the planet. This forest contains 7 percent of old-growth redwoods left in the world!
Drive the 6 mile long old stage coach road through the forest of redwoods or explore the many hiking trails in order to view more of these massively impressive trees. Boy Scout Trail, is a wonderful hike. Not too long and relatively flat. It leads you to the heart of the forest, and is truly a sight to behold because you are just surrounded by amazing trees. Another favorite of many at this park is Stout Grove due to the fact it has very little undergrowth and the trees, simply put, take center stage.
Early season, not many people are in the park so it is incredibly peaceful. It gets hot in late summer and there’s a lovely swimming spot along the Smith River. This park is a definite one of the best places to see redwood trees.
Redwood Forest Lodging
Nothing completes a redwood forest vacation like the perfect cabin. Redwood Coast Vacation Rentals offers a variety of properties surrounding the Redwood National & State Parks.
You can easily plan your day full of hiking amongst the Redwoods at Prairie Creek from this fabulous vacation home located just 15 minutes away from the park. This 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath home sleeps 6 and is the absolute perfect coastal farmhouse to stay at during you redwood coast adventure.
Stylish, Private Cabin on over 40 acres is just a 10-minute drive to Redwoods National & State Parks. There are nice walking trails on the property and the whole space is very private. This is a wonderful getaway for a couple with children or two couples. Enjoy the beautiful environment both inside this wonderfully restored home, as well as the fantastic wooded property.
Wild elk & next to Redwood Park trails. This newly upgraded two-story loft is just beautiful and so inviting! Spacious living room, efficiency kitchen, and upstairs sleeping loft with wonderful Redwood Park views! There is a list of hiking trails provided in this home with description, length, and difficulty level. Bring your mountain bikes, too, and ride in any of four directions on the interconnecting Redwood Parks bicycle trail system.