Your idea of a hike these days may be more about pounding the pavement than hanging with Mother Nature. This fall escape the urban jungle with your little trekkers on a flat, easy and one-way loop hike. We found five great ones below. Bonus: almost all are stroller-friendly.
Batiquitos Lagoon Trail
You’ll love the fact that Fido can come along with the jog stroller on this wide, flat four-mile lagoon trail. Your little walkers will dig the changing scenery from lagoon views and giant palm trees to lizards and even a bushy-tailed woodrat den.
Good to Know: To shorten the hike find the parking lot on Batiquitos Road, just past Shoreline Lane.
73880 Gabbiano Ln.
Torrey Pines State Reserve, Guy Fleming Loop Trail
Come for the views, stay for the habitat. Not only do scenic overlooks and panoramic views span the two-thirds-of-a-mile Guy Fleming Loop Trail, you’ll also get to experience wildflowers, ferns, cacti and more. This hike has gentle ups-and-downs, but mostly a flat loop. Enter through the South Parking Lot and drive to the mesa parking on top. Be sure to go before you hike since there are bathrooms in the parking lot only in case nature calls. Questions? Ask your friendly docent at the Visitor’s Lodge.
Cost: Parking, Mon.-Thurs., $10-12; Fri.-Sun., $12-15
12600 N. Torrey Pines Rd.
La Jolla, Ca
Photo Credit: Torrey Pines Reserve by Delia S. via Yelp
San Elijo Lagoon, Nature Center Loop Trail
Did someone say scavenger hunt? Stop by the Nature Center when heading out on this one-mile loop trail so little hikers can check-off the animals and plants as they explore this salt marsh. From jumping-fish to Fiddler crabs this route is full of discovery and learning. Restrooms are in the Nature Center and parking is free. Pack a lunch and munch-it down at the second-floor observational tables.
2710 Manchester Avenue
Mission Trails, Visitor Center Loop Trail
Go full circle when you and your budding backpackers travel this fairly-flat 1.6 mile Visitor Center Loop at Mission Trails. With quick and easy-access from anywhere in San Diego you’ll be surprised how swiftly you get from noise to nature. If time permits take the small detour to the Indian-acorn grinding area (this detour adds .4 miles). This popular route allows dogs-on-leash, and begins (and ends) in the free Visitor Center parking area.
1 Father Junipero Serra Trail
San Diego, Ca
Photo Credit: Mission Trails, Visitor Center Loop by Chelsea Alves
Tijuana Estuary, North McCoy Trail
If you’re looking for a quiet hidden gem to get away from it all, book it to Tijuana Estuary. Strollers are welcome on the .3 mile North McCoy Trail where you’ll be surrounded by beautiful views, and plenty of marsh birds to watch, snails in the river and lizards on the ground. The trail is wide, flat and easy-to-walk and the entrance offers free (graveled) Nature Center parking near where the trail starts. When done walking, tour the Nature Center exhibits discovering the history of the estuary and the details of the animals, flora and fauna.
301 Caspian Way
Imperial Beach, Ca
What are your go-to family hiking spots? Let us know in the comments below.