The community of Bolinas, accessible via a 30-mile drive northwest of San Francisco, is a pretty but quiet place. Known to value their privacy, the reclusive residents of this sleepy town aren't all that keen to invite visitors.
But don't let that put you off visiting this scenic coastal locale, which is home to the dog-friendly sands of Bolinas Beach.
Sometimes also known as Brighton Beach (because it's accessed by Brighton Avenue), this beach sits at the mouth of the Bolinas Lagoon and regularly offers prime conditions for beginner surfers. Bodyboarders, stand-up paddleboarders, kayakers, and sunbathers also frequent the beach, but its biggest drawcard is that dogs are allowed to roam the sand off-leash.
Bolinas Beach is the paw-fect spot to enjoy a relaxing day in the sun with your furry friend. You could pack a picnic lunch and spread out a blanket, or just spend some time watching the surfers make the most of the conditions.
If you want to stretch your legs, you and your dog can take a nice, long walk along the sand and splash in the water. At low tide, in particular, there's plenty of room for you to stroll quite a long way, indeed. Just make sure your dog is well socialized and behaved, as there's usually a pretty good chance you'll encounter other dogs and their owners on your seaside adventure.
Free street parking is available, but make sure you get there early as spots can fill up quickly during the warmer months. Restrooms are also provided near the tennis court on Brighton Avenue.
As always, make sure you remember to show courtesy to other beach users and properly dispose of your dog's waste whenever necessary. Doing this will help ensure that pooches continue to be allowed to roam off-leash at beaches like this for many years to come.