Redwood National Park

Redwood National Park Will Make You Say, ‘Wow!’


One tall Redwood

You have to see them to believe them — trees taller than the Statue of Liberty and up to 2,000 years old. Redwood National Park on California’s northern coast has some of the finest examples of old-growth forests in the world, as well as miles of wild coastline. Keep reading for ideas on the many ways to enjoy this one-of-a-kind area.

Where Is Redwood National Park?

Redwood National Park is located on the north coast of California, generally along the north-south U.S. Highway 101 corridor between Crescent City and Orick. It’s about 325 miles north of San Francisco.

Redwood National Park Owes Existence to Forward Thinkers

It may seem hard to wrap your head around, but back in the 1800s people didn’t view the California redwoods and think, “Wow! This is a national treasure. I’m going to take my grandchildren here someday.” No, they thought, “Sweet! Think how many buildings we can put up with all this lumber!”

To work went the axes and saws, and by the early 1900s it looked as though the coastal old-growth forests might go the way of the dinosaurs.

Thankfully, a group of visionaries stepped in to rescue the California redwoods from an unfortunate end. The Save the Redwoods League acted to preserve these magnificent behemoths for future generations to enjoy.

By the 1920s, the Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park were created by the state of California to protect some of the finest remaining coast redwoods.

The ancient California redwoods weren’t the only things that needed saving. Lands adjacent to the three state parks were an important part of the ecosystem. In 1968 Congress protected these lands with the creation of Redwood National Park. Twenty-six years later, the California Department of Parks and Recreation and the National Park agreed to jointly manage the four-park area to better protect resources.

Today, visitors to Redwood National and State Parks (RNSP) can explore ancient redwood forests in addition to open prairie lands, two major rivers, and 37 miles of unspoiled California coastline in a 50-mile long area. Together, these parks are recognized as a World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve. 

What to Expect at Redwood National Park

  • There are several places where you can study up on the towering trees at Redwood National Park. Five information centers are located along the north-south corridor of the park system. Redwood National Park headquarters is located at 1111 Second St., Crescent City CA 95531.
  • Pay attention! You may not even know you’re in Redwood National Park because there are no formal entrance stations. Don’t be that guy — the one who drives through the park oblivious to the fact that he’s close to some of the world’s tallest and most magnificent trees.
  • U.S. Highway 101 isn’t the only route through Redwood National Park. There are roads, highways, and scenic drives a-plenty providing access to interest points.
  • Big trees aren’t the only natural attraction. Redwood National Park, along with the state parks, protects 37 miles of rugged California coastline, where offshore rock pillars (called sea stacks) provide nesting for about 40 percent of the state’s seabirds.
  • Weather conditions in Redwood National Park are apt to be cool and moist. Dress accordingly!

Return to Top of Page

Return to Home Page