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These are the Best Things about Marin Headlands in the Fall

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While the rest of the country is saying goodbye to the dog days of summer, over at HI Marin Headlands things are only starting to warm up. The best kept secret in this little corner of California is the fall time, when the perpetual fog seems to finally retreat and the weather is just right for outdoor adventures. Here are four of our favorite reasons this cozy, welcoming hostel is perfect for the out-of-season traveler who isn’t quite ready to let go of the magic of summer just yet. 

The Weather 

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Those who visit the San Francisco area in the summer months from June to August are often surprised to find that “summer” here means cooler temperatures and the presence of Karl the Fog. But when fall hits, things warm up and it’s prime time to enjoy the networks of hiking and biking trails within the Golden Gate Recreation Area. If you’re more into laying back and taking it easy, then the pretty beaches up and down the coast will be perfect this time of the year as it’s finally hot enough to dip your toes. 

The Crowds 

hiking trails marin headlands

Fall time in the US means that for many people vacations are over and it’s back to school and work. For travelers, that means you’re more likely to have the park’s trails to yourself, and there’ll be less traffic on Conzelman Road, where photographers flock for spectacular Golden Gate Bridge views. You’ll still encounter plenty of locals and other wanderers, but overall you can expect a little more space to yourself so you can take it all in. 

The Wildlife 

seals at hi marin headlands

Each winter, gray whales can be seen breaching, spyhopping and tail-slapping near the coast, although over at Rodeo Beach (a short hike from HI Marin Headlands’ front door) you can them even earlier. You can often see the giant mammals feeding near the Golden Gate Bridge, and many a beach goer has felt the thrill when spotting water shooting up in the distance or a tail making a splash not far from the shore. The waters of the Pacific Ocean are also a highway for dolphins and seals, which can sometimes be seen from the Point Bonita Lighthouse, and there are all manner of birds and critters to behold on land as well. 

The Events 

sleep for peace hiusa

September 21st is the International Day of Peace, and HI USA celebrates with Sleep for Peace, a nationwide event that highlights our dedication to creating a more tolerant world through hosteling. Along with other hostels across our network, HI Marin Headlands hosts a special themed event for guests that’s one part altruistic and one part fun. Book your stay during this week and you’ll be treated to some good times while doing some good, and there’s nothing better than that. 

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HI USA Tip: While you’re in the area, find out how to go off the beaten path in Sausalito, and read more about why you should add a trip to HI Marin Headlands to your San Francisco visit