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Alum Rock Park, San Jose

4.6
#6 of 26 in Parks in San Jose
Alum Rock Park, founded in 1872, was the first municipal park in the U.S. state of California. Located in a valley in the Diablo Range foothills on the east side of San Jose, the 720 acre (2.9 km2) park offers 13 miles (21 km) of trails, varying from fairly level along Penitencia Creek to sharp switchbacks climbing to the ridges to the South Rim Trail and the North Rim Trail. The narrow floor of the valley includes a visitor center, a small museum/animal rehab facility, picnic areas, playgrounds, lawns, sand volleyball pits, mineral springs, lush plant life, woodlands, creek play opportunities, and occasional group camping.
The ridge trails offer views of Santa Clara Valley and of the valley in which the park is located. Some trails in the park are a part of the Bay Area Ridge Trail; the Todd Quick trail connects with the Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority's 1,600-acre Sierra Vista Open Space Preserve.
Equestrians and mountain bikers have access to some of the park's trails, while others are reserved for hikers only. Cross-country teams from high schools around North San Jose, such as James Lick High School and Independence High, use the park for training and for meets.
A visit to Alum Rock Park represents just the start of the adventure when you use our San Jose trip itinerary app to plot your vacation.
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Alum Rock Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
136 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • It is a big park . A nice place to ride horses or have a birthday party . A few too many wasps but bring a battery operated swater , it makes them stay away for 10 minutes at a time .  more »
  • Have been coming to Alum Rock Park for 35 years. I grew up in West San Jose. My family didn't frequent Alum Rock Park while I was growing up. In the 1970's some areas of the park fell into disrepair a...  more »
Google
  • This is one of the most beautiful Bay area hikes! And tons of picnic spot that don't break the place's natural feel. Prime candidate to my favorites. Also suitable for beginners: lots of tree shadows for sunny days and easy trails.
  • This park was THE place to be in San Jose for many years. There are hidden leftovers from the time when Alum Rock was the boardwalk of the area. The mineral springs are fascinating and stinky. There is plenty of picnic grounds, and it is so large, it is not hard to find a quite spot. I feel like the subtle incline from the front of the park, up the valley, provides a great hike beside the river.

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