Just 20 miles north of San Francisco, San Anselmo is a great sunny escape from our foggy summers. The charming town offers a great mix of activities, from craft projects to hiking/biking to shopping to dining. Whether you are a local, or just dropping by for the day, we’ve singled out the town’s must-see spots.

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Photo by Maciej Bliziński via Flickr

Tinkering/Crafts

Doodlebug
For your budding artists, a trip to this shop is a must. The front of the store is stocked with all the supplies your little one needs to get crafty, as well as great gifts and school supplies.
The Art Studio, in the back of the retail space, is a multi-purpose area where little ones and their parents can paint pottery or a wooden treasure box, make mosaics, decoupage, or even knit, using the vast resources available onsite.

641 San Anselmo Avenue
415-456-5989

Play-Well TEKnologies
For the future engineer in your family, drop by Play-Well TEKnologies. With the best selection of LEGO’s outside of LEGOLAND, Play-Well uses LEGO as a teaching medium to learn the basics of engineering. They offer both drop-in play ($10/hr.) as well as classes, workshops and summer camps. Your tiny engineers of tomorrow will build problem-solving skills as they learn the principles and methods of engineering, physics, architecture and art. Our little builder is on board for the upcoming LEGO Jedi Engineering camp and cannot wait to combine his two passions.

216 Greenfield Ave.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: play-well.org

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Photo by Stefanie Michejda

Play

Sorich Ranch Open Space
Once its time to enjoy some Marin sunshine, head for the trails at Sorich Ranch Open Space Park. With hiking trails of various levels of difficulty, its perfect for your aspiring mountaineers. The trails climb through eucalyptus woods and oak groves up to the golden hilltops that provide 360-degree views of Mt. Tam, the San Pedro Mountains, San Francisco Bay and beyond. A gazebo at the base provides some nice shade and the perfect spot to picnic post-hike.

(end of) San Francisco Blvd.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: townofsananselmo.org

Memorial Park is another great option to tucker out your tots. The park offers baseball fields, tennis courts, a playground and plenty of grassy areas — all framed by the surrounding hills. Millennium Playground was designed to showcase San Anselmo’s rich history, complete with a train depot, seminary tower and Town Hall tower. The newly approved San Anselmo Memorial Skatepark designed by CA Rampworks will provide year-round skate accessibility and keep young riders safely off the streets.

1000 Sir Francis Drake Blvd.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: townofsananselmo.org

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Photo courtesy of Comforts

Eat

Time to refuel your tuckered tots? Head over to San Anselmo institution, Comforts, for picnic essentials. For mom, there is the famous Chinese Chicken Salad, which has achieved near cult-status and the kids will swoon over Chicken Okasan—boneless chunks of white meat dipped in teriyaki, then panko-crusted and flash-fried. Local moms have dubbed this ‘kiddie crack’ although adults seem to be equally addicted. The deli case is packed with an abundant selection of salads, sides and entrees to take away, all using locally sourced produce and meats. Once your brown bag is packed, head over a few blocks to picnic at the new Imagination Park, which features bronze statues of Yoda and Indiana Jones. Both films were created in town by George Lucas, San Anselmo’s most famous resident, who donated the land for the park, tore down the existing building and paid for the bronze statues.

Comforts
335 San Anselmo Ave.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: comfortscafe.com

Imagination Park
535 San Anselmo Ave.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: sananselmopark.org

 

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Photo by Stefanie Michejda

Not in the mood for pizza? Head next door with your fresh-faced foodies to Sushi 69 for some of the best fish in the Bay Area. Chef/owner Hiroyuki ‘Hiro’ Makino flies in his fish fresh from Japan and the artistry in which he presents each piece of nigiri is evident. While they offer a variety of delicious specialty rolls, head straight to the Japan fish menu, which offers a rotating selection of wild fish from Japan. Equipped with chopstick helpers, our little ones fight over the white fish tempura roll, arriving table side still warm and crunchy on the inside with a perfect balance of tangy ponzu and crisp shiso leaf on the outside. Be sure and save room for a few scoops of green tea and red bean ice cream for dessert.

Sushi 69
69 Center Blvd.
San Anselmo, Ca
Online: shallwego69.com

Did we leave out your favorite San Anselmo haunt? Tell us in the comments! 

—Stefanie Michejda