Stinson Beach, California

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Stinson Beach is an unincorporated community in Marin County, California, on the west coast of the United States. Stinson Beach is located 2.5 miles (4 km) east-southeast of Bolinas,[3] at an elevation of 26 feet (8 m).[2] The population of the Stinson Beach CDP (census-designated place) was 751 at the 2000 census.

Stinson Beach is about a 35-minute drive from the Golden Gate Bridge on California's Highway 1. It is near important attractions such as Muir Woods National Monument, Muir Beach, and Mount Tamalpais. It has a long beach with occasional opportunities for surfing, although the water is cold and fog is common throughout the year.

Stinson Beach is a popular day trip for people from the San Francisco Bay Area and for tourists visiting northern California. Although most visitors arrive by private car, Stinson Beach is linked to Marin City by a daily bus service, and the network of hiking trails around Mount Tamalpais also reaches the town. The beach is one of the cleanest in the state, and sandy, unlike the rockier neighboring beach in Bolinas.[4]



Nathan H. Stinson bought land at the site in 1866.[3]

In 1870, the first road was built along the Pacific coast from Sausalito, California, and a tent settlement sprang up amongst the willow trees at the beach, which gave rise to the town's original name, Willow Camp. The Mt. Tamalpais & Muir Woods Railway opened in 1896, making Willow Camp more accessible. Visitors could ride the train to West Point Inn and then hike or arrange a stagecoach to take them to the beach. In 1906, refugees from the San Francisco earthquake came to the area and built some of the area's first businesses. Stinson Beach became the official town name in 1916, in honor of the largest landowners, Rose and Nathan Stinson.

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