Halloween’s delights and excitements had us all pretty tired out this week, so heading to a park seemed like the perfect antidote. The sunny afternoon and gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean didn’t hurt, either.
Malibu Bluffs Park is what I wish every park could be – a combination of traditional playground features and plenty of amazing natural elements. Like hiking trails, a whale watch lookout station, wide-open grassy spaces and more.
Insider tip: Start your visit at the small playground near the parking lot. It’s a great way to ease into exploring the natural areas beyond.
My hope was that we’d check out some of the hiking trails that meander through the hills at the edge of the park. But The Explorers had other ideas. They discovered a small sand pit with something for each of them – a turtle perfect for climbing on and a digging tool The Big Explorer wanted to take home.
Needless to say, we spent the better part of an hour here. It felt like time stood still as I watched, rested and relaxed while the kids played. These are the moments we long for, aren’t they?
Insider tip: Plan your visit to Malibu Bluff Park wisely. The park was all but empty when we arrived around 2 p.m. on a Tuesday; two hours later, the playground was packed and soccer practices were in full swing.
Eventually, I was able to nudge the kids away from sand play so we could go explore a bit more of the park. We looked for whales, heard plenty of unfamiliar birdcalls, saw a ton of rabbits and squirrels, and even meandered down a few of the hiking trails.
Insider tip: You could easily visit Malibu Bluffs Park just for the hiking. The 1.2-mile trail that begins at the edge of the parking lot loops around the entire park and offers stunning views of the Pacific the entire time.
There was more sand play to be had before we headed home, of course. Thankfully, the drive back in to the city offered one last reward – more amazing views. And guess what? They’ll be there all year.
5 Ways to Connect With Nature at Malibu Bluffs Park
- Fly a kite
- Look for whales at the whale watch station
- Dig in the sand pit with a made-for-kids, stationary digger
- Hike any of the many trails heading from the park down toward the beach
- Go geocaching & see if you can find a hidden treasure
- Malibu Bluffs Park is a 6-acre community park with baseball diamonds, a soccer field, a community center, a small enclosed play area, a small sand play area, a walking trail & a whale watching station PLUS access to several trails from the park’s edge down toward the beach
- There are several Malibu Bluffs Park hiking trails surrounding the park; the entire loop is roughly 1.2 miles
- Several picnic tables are scattered throughout the park; there’s also plenty of grassy space if you prefer to sit on the ground
- The Community Center hosts several classes and sports leagues, so the park is busy on weekends and late afternoons
- Restrooms available at the Community Center (adjacent to the parking lot)
- Free 75-space parking lot available at the park’s entrance
- Other places we’ve explored near Malibu Bluffs Park include Malibu Lagoon State Beach, Leo Carrillo State Park (both the tide pools and the campgrounds) & El Matador State Beach
Malibu Bluffs Park is located at:
24250 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90265