North Ridge and Sunset Trail Loop

EASY 158 reviews
#1 of 4 trails in

North Ridge and Sunset Trail Loop is a 4.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Belvedere-Tiburon, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

4.8 miles
777 feet

kid friendly



nature trips

trail running



wild flowers


no dogs

You will need to take a ferry to get to Angel Island. Once you're there, you will see entire Bay views, eucalyptus groves, beaches, ruins. The hike leads up the main road, then crosses the perimeter road, and keeps going up the mountain. There are many switchbacks, and watch out for poison oak. The hike leads up the north face, wraps around to the south face, giving you great views of San Francisco and the Golden Gate. Turn left at the North Ridge trail near the top of the mountain, this leads to a lookout, where you can see the entire bay. Heading back down, turn onto North Ridge trail, and head down to fire road, and turn right when you get down to the perimeter road. Past the old hospital is a split for quarry beach, and the picnic grounds. Head down to the beach for nice views of Berkeley and Oakland. Hike back up toward the perimeter road, and the direction you came down, but stay on the road, all the way back around to Ayala Cove.

1 month ago

Amazing views of all sides of the bay. A steep start. Picnic tables at the top. Worth going to summit of mt Livermore

1 month ago

I did this hike alone and really enjoyed it. It’s pretty easy to do, mostly up hill but with the most amazing views and lovely nature along the way. I got there on the 10am (ish) ferry and managed to get on the 12pm ferry back to San Francisco.
The views from the top are totally worth the hike. There were also some fun animals along the way, interesting birds and lizards! Would recommend on a clear day so you can make the most of the views!!

1 month ago

The views are remarkable... a 360 view of the Bay from the middle of it!

I took a detour from the trail to visit the immigration Center. At the top of the stairs on the North ridge trail, I made a left and went about a mile along the perimeter road to it's entrance. I read the signage around the harbor then did a self-guided tour of the barracks. (Bring cash for entry!) It was a good, visceral reminder of our problematic history with immigrants.

From the Immigration Center I continued for a short time on the perimeter road to a fire road on the right. I followed that yo the Ida Trail that was marked as "to Mt. Livermore". This was a mostly uphill, exposed stretch. A bit hot, but incomparable and unobstructed views of East Bay, Bay Bridge, Treasure Island, SF, and Golden Gate bridge. At the top, the trail met up with the sunset trail.

The sunset trail was mostly level and transitioned from grasses to oak and bay tree coverage. Once in the trees, it was a steady decline back to Ayala Cove.

I had time to read about the island's history and varied uses at the visitor center and a beer at the cafe before my ferry departure.

A great day to enjoy the Bay area and learn some new things about the area.

1 month ago

6-20-18 hike with my son and had a great day. Took to 10am Tiburon Ferry ($15 each) and started trail by 10:45. The trail going up to 788 feet is about what you would expect, except the views of the bay were spectacular. Also, went to the immigration station as a point of interest and history. Saw a mole on the trail, it was dead but still cool. This hike is all about the views.

2 months ago

Hiked it and biked it. Great scenery and the occasional history lesson regarding the islands, days a fort.

2 months ago

Great hike, beautiful views of the city from the peak, make due to bring water and snacks.

2 months ago

We started at Ayala Cove, and it was neat to see the seals on the docks. The rangers started cleaning the bathrooms just before the first boatload of students, parents and tourists arrived, leaving just one bathroom open. Be sure to show up prepared!

The trail was beautiful, and most people seemed to walk it the other way. Amazing views and lots of wildlife.

3 months ago

This is an incredible island hike. So much to see with panoramic views and gorgeous scenery. Highly recommend!

6 months ago

Beautiful. Great also with kids. Great day.

8 months ago

Awesome hike and one of the best days of my life. Did several trails on Angel and also walked the Golden Gate bridge..... I've fished the little cove on the west end for halibut many times but on this hike I got to hike part of it.

11 months ago

Great views from the top. We took the ferry from Tiberon and had a great walk

11 months ago

REI was taking a few Kayakers to the Island first thing and I joined- we arrived at the island at 830 and no one was there- except the SF fog - which limited the views however still a nice secluded hike

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Hiked up and down and all around Angel Island - enjoyed a day out there far away from the crowds inside the city of SF....

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Unparalleled views of the Bay Area - San Francisco, Marin, and three bridges (Bay Bridge, Golden Gate Bridge and Richmond Bridge).

We started on the Sunset Trail, which has switchbacks and a gradual ascent to Mt. Livermore with lovely views of the bay. We came down along the Ida Trail to the Perimeter Trail so that we could see the old military barracks and the immigration detention center on our way back to the cove. This route was about 6.5 miles.

You can get to the peak quicker by going up the steps, but you will not have the same views on your way up. Even though the island was crowded on a Saturday afternoon in June, the Sunset Trail had few people on the ascent. I think most people want to get to the peak as quickly as possible -- it is very exposed to the sun. We still ate lunch near the peak - there is a nice picnic table and landing just down from the peak with amazing views of the city, Golden Gate Bridge and Bay Bridge.

The trails to the peak (Sunset, North Ridge and Ida) have a lot of thistle in the summer, so I recommend wearing pants or heavy hiking socks to protect your legs. The Perimeter trail is a wide paved road. Bring lots of sunblock.

You can get to Angel Island from a number of ferry ports. We traveled from Tiburon, a very wealthy bayfront town in Marin

Monday, April 17, 2017

It was fun taking the ferry to the hike. Nice easy climb to the top of the island, great views. Pack a picnic. There are actually two hike options: up to the top and around the perimeter. Both around five miles. This is a highly trafficked hike with lots of tourists and kids; not super woodsy. Cafe and live band at the trailhead were a nice touch. Good day trip for out-of-towners.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Nice hike. A bit foggy at top of Mt Livermore so views were not good. But overall good hike, enjoyed the museums in the island as well

Sunday, July 17, 2016

mellow hike good view

trail running
Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Nice run and wonderful view on the bay.

Saturday, July 09, 2016

excellent views especially Alcatraz with Hyde st pier and Hyde st topped with fog.

mountain biking
Friday, May 20, 2016


Monday, April 11, 2016

Absolutely gorgeous trail.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Easy hike with nice views. Head straight to the trailhead from the ferry to beat the crowds

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

go up the sunset trail to mt livermore, down fire road onto peremiter road and back to alaya cove. thats 15 km and very pretty and easy. no surprises along the way. eagles and deer were spotted.

Monday, September 07, 2015

This is an easy hike for beginners. Great view of the bay, even on a cloudy day.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Another winner in the Angel Island hikers tour. The views are worth it.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Angel Island is a great place to hike. You will want to get an early ferry so you can complete the hike early in the day. The last ferry leaves the island at 5:20 PM to Tiburon. Might be best to get an earlier ferry.

There are two trails to the top of Mount Livermore. The Sunrise trail has the better views of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge. The North Ridge trail has more shade but not as scenic as the Sunrise trail. It is a moderate hike but lots of shady spots along the route. The trails meet and combine for the final trek to the top of Mt. Livermore. There are several picnic tables at or near the top to enjoy a snack or lunch. The views are spectacular 360 degrees from the top.

Friday, July 10, 2015


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Great sunny weather. Enjoyed the views along with the side of piece of history.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I did this bike ride for my 59th birthday with my husband and nephew. we had a wonderful time. It can be rough on the up hill, but worth it..fantastic views.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

This is a great 5 mile hike to escape San Francisco. There is a Civil War era army base, a World War 2 army barracks and an immigration checkpoint. It also has some of the best views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Bay Bridge and the San Francisco skyline. Enjoy this little piece of heaven.

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