3 Awesome Hikes in San Diego for Adventure Seekers

potato chip rock view in san diego

San Diego offers a great selection of outdoor adventure activities including several hiking trails less than 30 mins away. If you’re like me and can’t wait to get away from the busyness of city life and traffic, grab your water bottle and head out for a rewarding and beautiful hike. 

Here are 3 awesome hikes in San Diego (or nearish) where you can catch a great view, soak up some outdoor awesomeness, and set your spirits high with adventure. These are also highly recommended for watching an amazing sunrise or sunset as well!

You haven’t experienced San Diego until you’ve gone on these 3 awesome hikes for adventure seekers:


Cowles Mountain

Total miles: 3 miles out and back
Difficulty: Moderate

cowles mountain hiking trail

You’ll find plenty of people hiking this trail but don’t let that dissuade you from joining in. It’s popular for good reason. It’s close, a random mountain right in the city actually. The view at the top is amazing, especially on a clear day where you can see all of San Diego. Want an extra challenge? Try joining in with some of the crazy runners who run all the way up the mountain. I mean, I like adventure, but running up a mountain? That’s pretty hardcore. 


Iron Mountain

Total miles: 6 miles out and back
Difficulty: Moderate

iron mountain trailhead san diego

This is a beautiful hike all the way up. Get your panorama shots ready for an awesome view at the top! I’ve actually even done this one as a night hike with a group of friends and saw a shooting star! The glow of the city lights in the distance wasn’t bad either.

Iron Mountain panorama san diego hike


Mt Woodson aka Potato Chip Rock

Total miles: 6 miles out and back
Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

potato chip rock adventures

You haven’t truly experienced San Diego until you’ve hiked Mt. Woodson. The most famous landmark is a ledge of rock that juts out, known as Potato Chip Rock. A classic photo opportunity. It’s a moderately difficult trail so be sure to bring lots of water and take plenty of breaks.

potato chip rock view in san diego


Get out and enjoy the beauty of Southern California! San Diego offers plenty for the outdoor adventurer seeker. 

Have some favorite hikes in San Diego? Share your insights with me!


Yours truly,
a girl who dreams