Golden Gate National Recreation Area
Ft. Cronkite- Marin Headlands
The GGNRA is not a place, but a broad swath of territory surrounding San Francisco on both sides of the Golden Gate Bridge. South of San Francisco, in San Mateo County, it is pretty much open space with hiking trails but with a few unique twists, particularly the existence of habitat where three of our endangered/ threatened species make their homes. That area is best known as the place where our infamous San Andreas fault leaves land and enters the Pacific Ocean. In San Francisco much of the land was once The Presidio, a famed U.S. Army base that operated for more than 140 years, and before that was the site of a Spanish garrison established in 1776 and later still a Mexican military base for twenty-five years. The U.S. Army established its base in 1846. Across the Golden Gate Bridge in Marin County are the remains of more military infrastructure, now serving as a unique multi-use area with open space replete with deteriorating gun emplacements, a renowned museum geared to young children and their parents, a lighthouse and a privately-operated upscale lodge and restaurant. Name another National Park where you can eat a Michelin-starred meal. Add in Alcatraz and the Point Reyes National Seashore and you have a pretty comprehensive list of places to visit, all within easy commute range of San Francisco. Click the link for a more detailed look at the many pieces of this urban and urbane park. More.....
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