Location: UC Davis Arboretum, 1 Shields Dr., Davis, CA 95616
Stars: 5 (...but be careful about the parking)
Distance: 3.5 mile loop
Other Information: Family friendly, dog friendly (but the doggies have to stay on a leash)
The UC Davis Arboretum presents a great venue for an easy hike. It's a wonderful place to spend an afternoon strolling along the creek, visiting the many gardens and plant collections. Each is unique and well worth the time and effort to visit. You'll find a well crafted trail that meanders through campus. The Arboretum gardens are open 24 hours a day, every day of the year. There's no charge for admission. This is a dog friendly park, but dogs must stay on a leash.
If you are interested, the Arboretum has a calender of events full of ideas to engage all the members of your family. They have theatre, bike rides, speakers, and live music.
The University of California, Davis has provided a great interactive map to help guide you along the path. Hover your computer's pointer above the map's key and it will highlight the various attributes on the property. It will show you the many collections of plants, parking, bathroom facilities, and much more. The biggest concern most folks have is parking. The facility is located on the UC Davis campus. Parking permits are required. They cost $8.00 each, good for the whole day. You can purchase them from machines located at each parking lot. Just look for the Visitor Parking signs.
Each visitor should spend a bit of time on this site as it will answer many questions, and provide you with a tremendous amount of ideas for your own home. Check out the Arboretum All-Stars page. It highlights and suggests plants you may want for your own trails. The staff from the Arboretum have gathered a bundle of information to help you grow your own flora.
This is a great way to escape from either the campus or town, and enjoy a few hours in a truly beautiful environment. Take your time; enjoy your stroll and enjoy the outdoors!