Hikes in Griffith Park

Griffith Park preserves over 4,200 acres at the east end of the Santa Monica Mountains and is one of America’s largest urban parks. Griffith Park is just five miles from downtown Los Angeles, protecting an area of the “Hollywood Hills” between Interstate 5 and the 101 Freeway.

Griffith Observatory
A hiker’s view of Griffith Observatory

Discovering Griffith Park Hikes

Griffith Park is a cherished recreation hub for Angelenos and tourists alike, offering something for everyone. The park has many miles of trail, tennis courts, golf courses, a zoo, a merry-go-round, museums, trains, and landmarks like Hollywood Sign, the Griffith Observatory, and the Greek Theater.

Griffith Park caters to hikers with a variety of interests.

Want to explore the Batcave from the 1960s Batman series? Hike to Bronson Cave. It’s really short!

Want to learn about the stars that aren’t memorialized on Hollywood Boulevard? Hike to Griffith Observatory.

Need to mellow out on a shaded path? Stroll through Frendell or Amir’s Garden. (Ferndell Trail combines easily with a hike to Griffith Observatory.)

Want to picnic in weird abandoned zoo exhibits? Of course you do! Bring lunch to Old Zoo Picnic Area.

Want a lofty view? Hike up Mount Hollywood or Mount Lee (home of the Hollywood Sign).

Griffith Park Walk
Ferndell Trail in Griffith Park Park

Mount Hollywood

Rising over the center of Griffith Park behind the Griffith Observatory, Mount Hollywood has the most panoramic views over Los Angeles. While it isn’t the park’s highest peak, Mount Hollywood does rise to 1,625 feet. Picking a hike to the summit is a bit like deciding how much ice cream you want: one scoop, two scoops, or three scoops.

Which route to Mount Hollywood peaks your interest?

Mount Lee and the Hollywood Sign

If you want a closer view of the Hollywood Sign, four recommended hiking routes lead to the summit of Mount Lee, just behind the big white letters.

  • Brush Canyon Trail is 6.4 miles round trip with 1,1050 feet of elevation change and has fine views over Hollywood along the way.
  • Hollyridge Trail is shorter and easier at 3.5 miles round trip with 750 feet of elevation change, but parking can be limited.
  • Burbank Peak Trail ascends to the Wisdom Tree before crossing Cahuenga Peak (the highest point in Griffith Park) to reach Mount Lee and is 3 miles round trip with 875 feet of elevation change.
  • Innsdale Drive presents the best head-on views of the Hollywood Sign and is 4.6 miles round trip with 750 feet of elevation change.
  • Griffith Observatory to the Hollywood Sign provides a 5th option with a longer 8.8-mile route with 575 feet of elevation change that crosses Mount Hollywood to get over to Mount Lee.

Read more about these Hollywood Sign Hikes.

Hikes in Griffith Park

These hikes are listed from west to east, but may also be sorted alphabetically or by distance to help you find the hike you’re looking for. The listed hikes link to write-ups with complete descriptions and directions as well as GPS maps, elevation profiles, and lots of photos. Even through it is more of a Griffith-Park-adjacent outing, Hollywood Reservoir is included on this list. Dogs are allowed on all trails in Griffith Park. Bikes are not allowed on dirt trails, but can use paved roads.

TrailDescriptionDistance Location
Burbank Peak Trail Wisdom Tree446Burbank Peak
This out and back hike climbs to the Wisdom Tree perched at the west end of Griffith Park.
1.6 miles
740 feet
Cahuenga Peak Hike447Cahuenga Peak
This out and back hike ascends a dirt single track to Cahuenga Peak and the adjacent Mount Lee, home of the Hollywood Sign.
3 miles
875 feet
Innsdale Drive Hollywood Sign hike450Mount Lee and the Hollywood Sign via Innsdale Drive & Mulholland Highway
This out and back hike combines trails and streets to deliver some of the very best views of the Hollywood Sign on the way to the summit of Mount Lee above the sign.
4.6 miles
750 feet
Hollywood Sign Hollywood Reservoir Loop451Hollywood Sign - Hollywood Reservoir Loop
This hike combines trails and streets to visit the Hollywood Sign on Mount Lee, neighboring Cahuenga Peak and Burbank Peak, and Lake Hollywood Reservoir.
5.4 - 7.4 miles
1,070 feet
Hollywood Reservoir Trail452Lake Hollywood Reservoir Walking Trail
This easy loop circles a peaceful fence-enclosed reservoir in the hills below the Hollywood Sign.
3.5 miles
50 feet
Mount Lee Hike455Mount Lee and the Hollywood Sign via Hollyridge Trail
This hike ascends from Beachwood Canyon to the summit of Mount Lee behind the Hollywood Sign.
3.5 miles
750 feet
Mount Chapel Hike460Mount Chapel, Mount Bell, and Mount Hollywood
This undulating loop tops three prominent summits on a panoramic tour of Griffith Park.
5.7 miles
675 feet
Hollywood Sign465Mount Lee and the Hollywood Sign via Brush Canyon Trail
This out and back hike crosses Griffith Park from Canyon Drive to the top of Mount Lee, directly behind the landmark Hollywood Sign.
6.4 - 7.1 miles
1,050 feet
Bronson Cave470Bronson Cave
This short easy hike visits a man-made cave recognizable as the Batcave from the Batman TV series and hundreds of other locations on TV and film.
0.66 miles
50 feet
Griffith Park Mount Hollywood Hike471Mount Hollywood
This 1,625-foot peak is a star of Griffith Park with panoramic views that can be reached from Griffith Observatory on a steep 1.4-mile hike or a scenic 2.65-mile trek and from lower in the park in Western Canyon for a hike of around 4.2 miles.
1.4 - 4.8 miles
500 - 925 feet
Griffith Observatory to Hollywood Sign472Griffith Observatory to the Hollywood Sign
This hike travels from one Griffith Park landmark to another, taking a lengthy route across Mount Hollywood.
8.8 miles
575 feet
Ferndell Trail473Ferndell Trail
This relaxing hike goes through a tropical garden in the lushest little canyon in Griffith Park and can be extended to explore more of Western Canyon.
0.5 - 1.75 miles
65 - 260 feet
Griffith Observatory hike474Griffith Observatory via West Observatory Trail
This partial loop goes from Western Canyon up ridges to Griffith Observatory, getting sweeping views over Los Angeles and Griffith Park along the way.
2.1 miles
540 feet
East Observatory Trail Griffith Park475Griffith Observatory via East Observatory Trail
This hike from Vermont Canyon Avenue up to Griffith Park's great observatory delivers excellent views over Los Angeles along the way.
1.5 miles
380 feet
Glendale Peak Mount Hollywood Griffith Park477Glendale Peak - Mount Hollywood Loop
This hike tops two summits in Griffith Park that both have awesome views.
4.15 miles
765 feet
Glendale Peak Griffith Park478Glendale Peak
This hike visits a less known summit on the southeast side of Griffith Park with views that deserve more attention.
2.55 - 3.3 miles
330 - 405 feet
Cedar Grove and Vista View Point Loop479Cedar Grove & Vista View Point Loop
This hike on the southeast side of Griffith Park follows paved and unpaved trails to two park attractions, a quiet grove with a picnic area and a helipad with panoramic views.
2.3 miles
400 feet
Amirs Garden480Amir's Garden
This hike reaches a relaxing garden on the east side of Griffith Park that is a pleasant retreat for hikers.
1 miles
275 feet
Old Zoo Picnic Area490Old Zoo Picnic Area
This short hike explores the abandoned exhibits and animal cages in the ruins of the old LA Zoo in Griffith Park.
0.5 miles
50 feet
Bee Rock492Bee Rock
This hive-shaped point on the east side of Griffith Park can be reached via a pair of loop hikes.
1.7 - 4 miles
600 feet
Beacon Hill495Beacon Hill
This out and back or loop hike in Griffith Park climbs to the easternmost summit in the Santa Monica Mountains.
2.75 - 3.9 miles
500 feet
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Social Distancing Los Angeles Coronavirus Hiking
Most trails around Los Angeles have now closed. You are about to read an unusual post for a hiking website, written during the coronavirus pandemic. Hikespeak.com is in no way qualified to offer medical advice. If the government issues any rules or guidelines that contradict something written here, ignore hikespeak and follow the recommendations of government and medical professionals.... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: April 2, 2020
Longridge Park Hike Sherman Oaks Santa Monica Mountains Longridge Trail Los Angeles California
The Santa Monica Mountains have significant parks with great hiking getaways. Often overlooked are smaller undeveloped pockets within the mountains that offer quick escapes from the stresses of Los Angeles. Longridge Park in Sherman Oaks is the latter, a 50-acre park with a 0.2-mile long use-trail. Longridge Trail has ridge-top views throughout its short run, like perspectives north... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: January 14, 2019
Las Virgenes View Trail Las Virgenes Valley Hike Malibu Canyon Las Virgenes View Park Calabasas California Santa Monica Mountains
Las Virgenes View Park preserves nearly 700 acres of the Santa Monica Mountains adjacent to Malibu Creek State Park. The park has one established trail, Las Virgenes View Trail, which rises to a panorama-boasting ridge. The trail traverses grasslands and oak woodlands near Las Virgenes Road and then runs up a canyon to a ridge where it forms a small loop with mountain views in all... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: January 11, 2019
Heartbreak Hill Trail Santa Monica Mountains Hike Liberty Canyon Agoura Hills California
The heart pounding on Heartbreak Hill comes from the heavy dose of elevation on this short trail, which climbs 600 feet in a little over a mile. The trail is steep from the start, but does taper out before a rapid rise to Heartbreak Ridge, just below a summit crest. The hike is easy-to-reach, setting out from Agoura Road near the Liberty Canyon Exit of the 101 Freeway. The top of the hike... Read more.
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Tagged with · Agoura Hills · Free Trails · Dog-Friendly Trails · Santa Monica Mountains
Distance: 2.1 miles · Elevation change: 600 feet
By: Published: Last updated: January 11, 2019
Anza Loop Trail Santa Monica Mountains Hike Calabasas Agoura Hills California
In a rolling, grassy stretch of the Santa Monica Mountains near the 101 Freeway, Anza Loop Trail plots a course through history. Pause along the trail to study panels and plaques about the past - or just breeze through the loop and enjoy the present sights and sounds. Like Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Loop Trail takes its name from Juan Bautista de Anza who led an expedition up... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: January 20, 2021