Berkeley Marina Loop Trail is a 4.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Berkeley, California that offers scenic views and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length4.8 miElevation gain72 ftRoute typeLoop
dog friendlyWheelchair friendlyKid friendlyStroller friendlyNature tripsRoad bikingWalkingBird watchingrunningPavedViewsCity walk
Description
Waypoints (0)

According to Access Northern CA (http://accessnca.org/access-northern-california/explore/explore-detail-view/?site_id=185): When you visit this peninsular park and marina, it’s hard to believe that in the 1950s and ’60s the city of Berkeley operated a garbage dump here and was planning to extend the city 2 miles into the Bay by filling in 2,000 acres of water. Those efforts were thwarted by the Save the Bay movement, which started in 1961 and led to the creation of many parks and trails where development had been planned. Today there is only one obvious sign of its former use as a dump: a fenced-in chimney that vents methane gas from the still-decomposing stuff below. Now this urban wonder is home to a popular 3,000-foot recreational pier, a marina offering sailing and windsurfing classes, several restaurants, Shorebird and César Chávez parks, and several miles of trails. The western shore of the park is a great place to watch the sunset and view the Golden Gate Bridge. For young children there is Adventure Playground, a unique outdoor facility where kids can play and build things using found and recycled objects. Acrobatic kite flying is a common, year-round attraction at César Chávez Park, and for a truly dazzling sight, check out the Berkeley Kite Festival and West Coast Kite Championship, the largest kite-flying festival in the United States, held here every July. Shorebird Park Nature Center is housed in the first municipal straw bale building in the United States––the building itself is a display on green building. Inside you’ll find a 50-gallon saltwater tank, a 30-gallon freshwater tank, and displays on marine mammals and birds, including bones, shells, and skins. Also of interest in the area, a pedestrian bridge at Frontage Road West crosses Interstate 80 and takes you to Aquatic Park—and, farther on, to Berkeley’s upscale Fourth Street shopping district. At Aquatic Park Bay Area Outreach and Recreation Program operates an adapted cycling program. Accessibility: Van-accessible parking spaces are plentiful throughout the area. The trails are paved and typically at least five feet wide. They are mostly flat with an average grade of 1% and a max grade of 4%. To go to Cesar Chavez Park, head east from the parking space on Spinnaker Way and take the ramp that climbs gently to the trail, then runs parallel to Spinnaker Way for a quarter-mile before turning north. The trail ends at the cul de sac, but if you want to continue another mile to the pier, cross Spinnaker Way and travel through the boat launch parking lot to connect to the trail at the water. West of the off-leash dog area, in the park’s center, a rough dirt trail leads to the highest point of another hill and a solar calendar. Those in manual wheelchairs may need assistance as on the other dirt trails that crisscross the hill. South of the pier, you can follow the trail in front of the parked cars, but it’s best to cross Seawall Drive and follow the walkway to the northeast corner of the large parking lot. Here you’ll find the entrance to Shorebird Park, a flat, grassy area sheltered by trees on the west and north, with picnic tables at water’s edge and a small inaccessible, rocky beach. Continuing east, the trail skirts the South Sailing Basin, passing the Cal Sailing Club and Cal Adventures. The public small-craft boat launch here has a very steep ramp. Neither the Cal Sailing Club nor Cal Adventures offer adapted boats but you can find some in San Francisco through the Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors. Beyond the launch, the paved trail briefly turns north, then follows University Avenue to Frontage Road West. From here you have several options to extend your journey: continue south several miles on the paved Bay Trail to Emeryville, take the side path that leads to the pedestrian bridge over Interstate 80 and Aquatic Park, or cross to the north side of University Avenue to explore a small section of McLaughlin Eastshore State Park (an 8.5-mile shoreline park from the Bay Bridge to Richmond). Here dirt trails meander through Berkeley Meadow. There is an accessible restroom at Cesar Chavez Park and accessible portable toilets off Spinnaker Ave before the cul-de-sac and by the off-leash dog park. Accessible restrooms in the southern area of the park are by the marina office (closed from 5 PM to 4:30 AM), at the foot of the pier, and between the nature center and playground. There are accessible picnic tables at Shorebird Park and Cesar Chavez Park with firm and stable routes and surfaces, and at least 27 inches of knee clearance. The visitor center is wheelchair accessible.

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Reviews (124)
Photos (265)
Recordings (132)
Completed (252)
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Tyler Chuck
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 24, 2021
Hiking

Great loop at the Marina that follows the water most of the way. Trail is mostly paved and dog friendly! Almost zero elevation gain. Nice walk!

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Jose Ramos
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Mountain bikingGreat!
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Darrin Tinsley
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Hiking

Half very cool half sketchy AF. Great views but a rew weirdos. Part of the trail is hard pack not 100% paved. Cesar Chavez was free of weirdos

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Machan F.
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Hiking
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Tyler Chuck
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Hiking

Beautiful loop at sunset! Nice to grab the last hours of sunlight in a place that gets as much sun as possible. Path is mainly paved.

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Bonnie Carlino
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 28, 2020
Hiking

Great for running! A lot of people, but spacious enough to not get within 6 feet. You do run by some peoples’ tent homes, so be respectful of their space (no creepy vibes during my run in the daytime).

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Deborah Wakin
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WalkingGreat!
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Woojin Kim
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Hiking
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Samantha Adams
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Hiking
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ro c
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 5, 2020

Plenty of street parking near Cesar Chavez. Flat, paved path with lots of scenery: dogs, the city, boats, the bat. This is my go-to spot for runs.

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Jane Blunck
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Hiking

Beautiful sunset!

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James Hodson
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Hiking
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Neil Frendberg
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Hiking

Trying to find a way to put in the miles without the smoke.

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Tyler Chuck
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 21, 2020
Hiking

One of the only open trails in the Bay as many parks were shut down due to wildfires. Nice walk and there was relatively less smoke than most everywhere else!

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Roxanne King
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Hiking

Very windy. Easy to navigate with a stroller. Was able to find parking easily. Was able to maintain social distancing even though it was fairly busy. Most people in masks even on the trail. Lots of birds and ground squirrels. Great hill for kites.

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Pearl Opem
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Walking

Windy but nice walk!

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Rossi Snipper
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 23, 2020
HikingNo shade

A very pleasant walk, wonderful views of San Francisco, the Golden Gate & Bay Bridges, the remnants of the old pier. Pancake flat. I lean towards taking the trail through the East Shore Park from University Avenue rather than taking the Bay Trail along the frontage road.

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Tyler Chuck
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 22, 2020
Hiking

Great flat paved walk along the water. Nice that the trail is a loop. Excellent way to explore the Berkeley Marina!

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Mit Maurille
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 13, 2020
Walking

very scenic and very easy. best to start by parking at the circle in Cesar Chavez park and head through the marina toward the old HS Lordships Restaurant. then back to cesar Chavez park. great views of the eastern span and tower of the Bay Bridge, the SF Bay, SF Skyline, GGB, and Mt. Tam.

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Nathan Tsang
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Running

Mostly paved, great for a quick run.

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Rachel Chiu
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 21, 2020
HikingNo shade

Very easy walk, less of a hike. Great views of the marina. Virtually no incline or downhill.

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Andy Wehrley
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Hiking

Great for a quick run, esp the part on dirt.

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Sarah Best
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WalkingNo shade
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Janice Lee
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WalkingNo shade
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Anneeth Hundle
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Walking

Easy and nice views

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lisa yelder
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This is a very nice well-paved trail with spectacular views of the bay. Great for walking or bike riding.

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Jerry Zhu
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 15, 2017

Great view to San Francisco along the trail. Easy paved trail. Saw a multitude of birds on land and in water, though didn't see any wintering owls. The marina is peaceful as usual. The fishing pier has been blocked due to structural safety issues.

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Steven Sheffield
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Hiking
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Robert noriega
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Hiking
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Morgan Wilmoth
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Hiking
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