Places to Visit After Pinnacles National Park

Located along California’s Central Coast, Pinnacles National Park protects a gorgeous rugged landscape encompassing a number of mountains and caves. Once you’ve had your fill of Pinnacles National Park, continue your trip with a visit to one of the following nearby destinations. 

Soledad – Just 10 miles west of Pinnacles National Park, the city of Soledad is home to one of California’s historic Spanish missions, Mission Soledad. There are several wineries to visit in the area and this scenic town offers stunning views of the surrounding Santa Lucia Highlands and Salinas Valley. 

San Jose – Just an hour outside of Pinnacles National Park lies San Jose, a bustling city in Silicon Valley, a major center for technology in California. Visit San Jose’s charming historic district for colonial Spanish architecture and don’t miss the Tech Museum of Innovation. 

San Francisco – Just over 2 hours from the park, San Francisco has endless things to offer. Take in views of the spectacular Golden Gate Bridge, visit Alcatraz Island, dine in trendy restaurants, and so much more.

Yosemite National Park – Yosemite is 3.5 hours from Pinnacles National Park, making it the perfect next stop along your journey if you’re looking for more miraculous natural landscapes. One of the most popular national parks in the United States, Yosemite is home to giant sequoia trees and granite cliffs. 

Sequoia National Park – Just over 3 hours outside of Pinnacles National Park, Sequoia National Park makes for another unique stop along your trip. Renowned for its ancient giant sequoia trees, this park has much to offer by way of nature.

Staying Safe at Pinnacles National Park

Pinnacles National Park is a breathtaking park situated in central California. Home to mountainous landscapes and rugged terrain, there is much to explore in this unique national park! Visitors to Pinnacles National Park should take the necessary safety precautions to ensure a smooth trip. 


Temperatures in Pinnacles National Park can climb above 100º F during the summer, so bring plenty of water and sun protection, including sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat. Make sure to bring sturdy shoes as trails and caves are slippery when wet.


Poison oak is common along the majority of trails in Pinnacles National Park, so know how to recognize it and make sure to avoid it at all costs. There are a variety of snakes found in Pinnacles National Park, and rattlesnakes pose a significant safety threat. Stay on the trails and watch where you step and reach. Always remember to keep a safe distance from all wild animals and never feed or approach the wildlife. 

Other Concerns

The caves in Pinnacles National Park are dark and the remoteness of the park means that emergency services are not easily available. Make sure to bring a flashlight with you and any emergency supplies you may need. Know your limitations for hiking and rock climbing and don’t push yourself to do more than your body can handle.

Caves are dark, slippery, and have low-hanging ceilings, so it’s imperative to bring a flashlight or headlamp, wear sturdy shoes, and watch where you step.

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Points of Interest at Pinnacles National Park

Pinnacles National Park is a rugged park situated along California’s Central Coast, just south of San Jose. The park protects the remains of an extinct volcano and an extensive remote mountainous region. Visitors to the park will want to be sure to visit Pinnacles’ main points of interest! 

Condor Gulch Overlook 

Hike the Condor Gulch Trail one-way to get to the breathtaking Condor Gulch Overlook. The trail can get hot, especially during the day, so be sure to bring plenty of water and proper sun protection. 

Bear Gulch Reservoir 

Take the Moses Springs Trail to the scenic Bear Gulch Reservoir, where you can enjoy spectacular views of the unique surroundings. Once you’ve had your fill of the reservoir, use the Bear Gulch Trail to complete the loop. 

Balconies Cave Trail 

One of Pinnacles National Park’s most popular trails, Balconies Cave Trail leads visitors through a long, narrow cave. You may have to wade through water or work your way through difficult rock formations, so be sure to bring a flashlight! 

Bear Gulch Cave Trail  

This trail climbs through a talus cave and is accessed by the east entrance to the park. Make sure to bring your own flashlight for this trail as well. Bear Gulch Cave is open seasonally, so if you’re visiting the park when it’s open you definitely won’t want to miss it! 

High Peaks Trail 

Among the more popular of the park’s trails, High Peaks Trail is a one-way hike that can be combined with various other trails to create a loop. The hike offers spectacular views over the gorgeous landscape of Pinnacles National Park.