Close to San Francisco, close to the shores of San Pablo Bay, China Camp State Park is also a beautiful place for a mountain bike, even if you’re a beginner (yes, there’s a trail for you!). Named after an 1880s shrimp-fishing village settled by Chinese immigrants, this popular state park offers a variety of well-maintained trails. The 5-mile Shoreline Trail is ideal for newbies because it’s smooth and never gets too steep, plus riders get to enjoy bay views almost the entire way. Intermediate and advanced riders can tackle an awesome 11-mile loop with great singletrack and nothing too technical.
BONUS FOOD & DRINK: Post-ride make your way to the Quan Bros. snack shop in the park’s Fisherman’s Village. The charming no-frills establishment serves food and drinks (there’s ice cream!). Dine alfresco at a nearby picnic table with views of the San Pablo Bay. Or bring your own food and head to the south side, where a stretch of pebble beach runs up to a grass knoll with picnic tables.
11-mile loop directions: From the main entrance to the Back Ranch Meadows campground, follow the Shoreline Trail up to the Bay View Trail. At 1.8 miles in, you’ll hang a left on Bridge #12 to stay on the Bay View Trail. A short descent on Back Ranch Fire Trail will then link you back again to the Bay View Trail. Connect to the Oak Ridge Trail for some really fun swooping singletrack. Follow the Shoreline Trail back to the campground to complete the loop.