When the weather heats up, locals and tourists alike flock to Stinson Beach. This can make for a slow slog up highway 1 from Marin County, especially in the summer, but the spectacular coastal views are worth it.
Muir Woods National Monument is a popular stop along the way. The park gets crowded with groups of tourists ambling along the trails, gazing upward at the majestic old-growth redwoods (the tallest is nearly 250 feet tall and close to 800 years old!). Despite the crowds, Muir Woods is a must.
Stinson Beach is about 15 minutes from Muir Woods. This waterfront village has a 3.5-mile stretch of pristine beach along Bolinas Bay that attracts sunbathers and surfers. Stinson is a rustic beach town with a handful of dining options, a surf shop, a book shop and some galleries.
For a quick taco or crepe, head over to the beachside walk-up, The Siren Canteen. For a more upscale dining experience, The Sand Dollar Restaurant & Bar offers seafood dishes and live music nights.
Bolinas is a funky little community close to Stinson Beach. Bolinas is surrounded by water on three sides—Bolinas Lagoon, Bolinas Bay and the Pacific Ocean. The residents of this unincorporated village are notoriously protective of their secluded paradise. Although there are no marked roads to get here, it’s not that difficult to find. Head north on highway 1 from Stinson and drive all the way around the Bolinas Lagoon.
It’s easy to understand why the folks here don’t want to be overrun with visitors. It is a laidback, beachfront town with one local watering hole, Smiley’s Schooner Saloon, and one restaurant, Coast Café.
Bolinas has a colorful beach wall that’s worth checking out. Whether it is graffiti or art is up for debate, but it’s cool nonetheless.
If you’re up for a day hike, the trail to Alamere Falls is a scenic one with an epic pay-off. Known as a “tidefall,” Alamere Falls is a rare type of waterfall that flows directly into the ocean.
The best time to go is in the spring when it is fully flowing, but any time of year is still worthwhile. It is an 8-mile roundtrip hike that passes by two pretty lakes—Bass Lake and Pelican Lake—before you get to the beach where the falls are.
To get to Alamere Falls, you start at the Palomarin Trailhead which is about a 15-minute drive from Bolinas along Mesa Road. Bring a lunch and plenty of water!
Tiburon is an affluent enclave of Marin County, situated on a small peninsula just north of San Francisco. Surrounded by water on three sides, it’s easy to see what makes this picturesque town so desirable.
The most relaxing and scenic way to get to Tiburon is by ferry from San Francisco. If you’re up for some adventure, you can even take a bike with you. Once you disembark downtown, head straight to Sam’s Anchor Café on Main Street. On weekends, day-trippers from SF, cyclists and locals create a convivial atmosphere on Sam’s expansive waterfront patio. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a Bloody Mary or Martini with some oysters or fish & chips while taking in the breathtaking views of the city and Angel Island.
Satisfy your sweet tooth on Main Street at Caffe Acri, which has delicious, authentic-tasting Italian espresso drinks and Italian pastries, or at The Candy Store for fudge and other delights (including model trains!).
Whether you are peddling or driving, Sausalito is less than 10 miles from Tiburon. Sausalito is a tourist mecca for good reason. Situated right on the bay, this tony town has views to die for and is chock-full of waterfront restaurants, cafes and boutiques.
With all the impressive sailboats and yachts in the harbor, it’s clear that Sausalito attracts the well-heeled sailing set. The bayside community’s love of the sea spawned its most famous attraction: houseboats.
Since the 1950s, Sausalito’s bohemian houseboat community has attracted artists, musicians and writers. The houseboats run the gamut from modest to elaborate, including the infamous Taj Mahal houseboat.
Larkspur is a 15-minute drive away from Sausalito. This charming community has a historic downtown with great examples of 19th century and early 20th century architecture. Storefront facades, Queen Anne Victorians and a Mission Revival-style church and city hall still exist among the upscale restaurants and boutiques. The Lark Theater, which hosts independent film screenings and festivals, is a beautifully restored Art Deco building.
Make like a local and grab a latte at Emporio Rulli or, if PBR is more your style, pop into the Silver Peso. Pizzeria Picco is a popular—and habit-forming—eatery. The local and organic Straus soft-serve with various toppings for dessert is almost as popular as their traditional Neapolitan pizza.
More upscale dining and shopping can be found at the Marin Country Mart. This shopping center is located across the freeway at Larkspur Landing, near the ferry terminal. There are great farm-to-table restaurants like Farmshop and Belcampo. Space.NK.apothecary from London is a fun place to poke around for luxe cosmetics and fragrances. Diesel bookstore is another cool shop to explore. Marin Country Mart hosts a farmers market every Saturday and Off the Grid food trucks on Sundays.
Since I was 12 I’ve had glasses. And I’ve resisted them. A fear of commitment maybe? The thought of wearing the same pair with every outfit and for every event or occasion for a full year sometimes more made me nervous. Sadly to say, in some cases (okay in lots of cases) I’ve gone without glasses simply because they didn’t go well with my mood or attire. This childish decision has been detrimental…especially on the occasions where I’m speaking to a large audience, but can’t see my notes or my slides on the screen. Winging it took on a whole new meaning!
Several years ago my little sister (my fun, beautiful, funky glasses-wearing sister) introduced me to Zenni Optical. The glasses are so darn cute and so darn affordable, you can’t help but buy 2-3-4 pairs at a time (and some for my kids). Now, as I get older and wiser (for the most part) glasses are starting to become part of my personal brand. Confession: I have 7 pairs of glasses that I rotate through. Instead of commitment issues, I like to think that it shows I’m flexible and versatile.
I pretty much have a pair for everything. Except a party pair! So I took matters into my own hands and added some sparkle to my existing specs. I have to admit, this is the easiest DIY I’ve ever done. And when I wore them for the first time, I got at least 6 compliments within the first couple hours. I was loving all of the special attention (thought my daughter didn’t think it was too cool after the 3 person in the grocery store stopped me).
So if you’re looking to add a little spark to your glasses game or if you want some instant positive reinforcement from total strangers, you MUST try this:
1. I took one of my classic black frames from Zenni.
2. I taped the lenses (I was told I could easily pop them out, but I don’t trust myself…at all)
3. I grabbed my super glittery nail polish and went to town (carefully, of course)
4. I let them dry. Boom! (p.s. you can add an additional layer of clear polish for extra security lol)
If you attempt this quick and easy DIY, I want to see you pics…AND I want to know how many total strangers thought you were the coolest!
STINSON When the weather heats up, locals and tourists alike flock to Stinson Beach. This can make for a slow slog up highway 1 from Marin County, especially in the summer, but the spectacular coastal views are worth it. Muir Woods … [Read more]
TIBURON Tiburon is an affluent enclave of Marin County, situated on a small peninsula just north of San Francisco. Surrounded by water on three sides, it’s easy to see what makes this picturesque town so desirable. The most relaxing and s … [Read more]
Since I was 12 I've had glasses. And I've resisted them. A fear of commitment maybe? The thought of wearing the same pair with every outfit and for every event or occasion for a full year sometimes more made me nervous. Sadly to say, in some cases … [Read more]