The hang-gliders, surfers and beach-goers might first catch your eye, but it’s the “no dogs” signs you need to watch when visiting Stinson Beach in West Marin. The southern part of this popular playground is under jurisdiction of the National Park Service and off-limits to dogs. But on Upton Beach, the county-owned section in the middle, Rover can join you (leashed) in excavating material for a sand castle or walking in the gentle surf.
For a little more exercise, keep walking north over "private" Seadrift Beach, where dogs and their people have an legal easement, to the mouth of Bolinas Lagoon.
Want to cut your pup loose for a romp? You’ll have to do a little sleuthing to find Bolinas Beach—or for that matter, even the town of Bolinas. Territorial locals routinely remove the road signs, but believe us, there’s a nice, legally leash-free strand at the end of Olema Bolinas Road.
Memorable places to enjoy a meal with Rover abound in the Stinson/Bolinas area. Stop for a pint at Smiley’s Schooner Saloon, one of the oldest operating bars in California, or grab breakfast or lunch on the patio at the Parkside Café, another California classic. We’re also fans of the Sand Dollar, where the cioppino and clam chowder are sure winners.