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(Last Updated On: June 8, 2022)

Best Must-See spots when driving through the Avenue of the Giants in California. Avenue of the Giants is one of the most scenic places to see Redwood trees, and there are so many different ways to experience it! This guide will take you through some of the best stops to see Redwoods in Avenue of the Giants as a main destination or an add on to your California road trip.

Avenue of the Giants

Land Acknowledgement: Tribe of Sinkyone. Find what Native Land you are visiting by using the app Native Land! I encourage you to read the history and culture of the Indigenous people who’s land you are visiting!

About the Avenue of the Giants

The Avenue of the Giants is a 31 mile scenic highway in Northern California that runs adjacent to the 101 highway. This stretch of highway has been called the “Finest Forest Drive in the World”. I highly recommend taking this scenic byway if you have a few minutes to spare, because on this drive are some of the most incredible Redwood Trees I have seen!

Now that I’ve lived in Humboldt County for almost an entire year, seeing Redwood trees is not out of the ordinary. Yet, every time we go to the Avenue of the Giants, I get the same feeling as if I was seeing them for the first time again.

The great thing about the Avenue of the Giants, is that it is SO easy to make a few quick stops and really see some incredible sights. So whether this is the main attraction on your trip, or you’re just passing through – make sure to check out these recommendations for the best quick stop spots below!

Getting to the Avenue of the Giants

Click to open Map
  • Distance from Seattle: 10.5 hours
  • Distance from Portland: 8 hours
  • From San Francisco: 4 hours

Important Driving Information: Depending on which way you are traveling, I recommend putting “Avenue of the Giants North Entrance” (Depicted by marker A on the Map) or “Avenue of the Giants South Entrance” (Depicted by marker B on the Map) in your phone. This will ensure you don’t miss the entrance! But don’t stress if you do! There are multiple entrances onto the Avenue of the Giants.

PARKING PASS & FEES for Avenue of the Giants

You’re in luck! Only one of the places I’m about to mention requires a fee! The Drive-Through Tree listed below requires a $10 fee.

Toilets are available at Founders Grove and the Drive-Through Tree

Avenue of the Giants Road Trip Must See's. This picture shows a woman hiking on a trail between two large redwoods for scale. The Fallen Tree is cut to allow the path to go through and the fallen tree is taller than the woman walking on the trail.
Founder’s Grove Trail

Recommended Itinerary for the Best Quick Stop Spots in the Avenue of the Giants

This itinerary will be from North to South. If you are traveling from the South heading North, just reverse this itinerary!

1. Founder’s Grove Trail

Avenue of the Giants: Best Quick Stop Spots. Another incredible Redwood tree that can be seen on Founder's Grove Trail.

This jaw-dropping grove is just off of the Avenue of the Giants and is an excellent short stop to see some of the tallest Redwoods in the WORLD!

Walk the short .5 mile loop and learn about the trees on a self guided tour using the provided pamphlets (suggested $1 donation). At the end of the loop lies the Dyerville Giant, that once stood at over 360 feet and lived for an estimated 2,000 years. When the Dyerville Giant came falling down in 1991, the impact was hard enough that it was noted on a seismograph. *mind blown*

Avenue of the Giants: Best Quick Stop Spots. Take a selfie with Founder's Tree, an especially large Redwood Tree at the beginning of the trail.
Founder’s Tree at the beginning of the trail head

Founder’s Grove Trail Info:

  • .5 mile loop
  • 29 feet elevation change
  • No Dogs Allowed
  • ADA Accessible trail
  • Bathrooms available in parking lot

Make sure to stop and take a picture with Founder’s Tree at the beginning of the trail!

2. Avenue of the Giants Road

Avenue of the Giants: Best Quick Stop Spots. This road has redwoods closely packed to the road and 2 women walking down the road for scale look very small.
Photo in Collaboration with @blaine_scinta

Who doesn’t love a good classic road shot?? This road is full of photo opportunities, but I’ll share with you my favorite spot. The easiest way to find this road with towering redwoods is to navigate towards the California Federation of Women’s Club.

Make sure you park either in the Parking lot of the California Federation of Women’s Club park (if open) or at a large pull-of near the overpass (will be very obvious). Depending on what time of day you go, this road can have moderate traffic, so stay aware and be careful and considerate.

Interested in what Camera Gear we use? Check out my blog about what Camera Gear I use to take all of my photos and videos HERE!

3. Shrine Drive-Through Tree

Shrine Drive-Through Tree is another classic along the Avenue of the Giants: Best Quick Stop Spots
Photo Credit: Trip Advisor

How often do you get to drive through a tree?! Other drive-through trees I have visited, the opening is created by people. The Shrine Drive Through opening was created on it’s own naturally.

The Shrine Drive Through Tree is $10 and allows for plenty of picture time. Toilets are available here. The tree closes in the winter, so make sure to check the hours and closures when you plan your trip!

Best Time of Year to Visit the Avenue of the Giants

Avenue of the Giants: Best Quick Stop Spots
Photo in Collaboration with @downtofowler

Firstly, the great thing about the Avenue of the Giants and the Redwoods in general, is the climate stays mild around them. Located in Northern California, this itinerary allows for visits year round. The only place you’ll miss out on in the winter is the Shrine Drive-Through Tree. Secondly, I personally find Late Fall to be enchanting there when there are giant yellow and orange leaves covering the road and the crowds have thinned.

Above all, these spots aren’t as busy as some of the places in the Redwoods National Park further North, but traveling outside of Summer will ensure an even less crowded visit.

Nearby Destinations

Traveling North? Check out my other guides on Fern Canyon or my Ultimate Oregon Road Trip Itinerary

Wanting more Redwoods? Check out my ultimate Redwoods Road Trip Guide:


Coming from a local, Avenue of the Giants is one of my favorite places to take friends and family to see Redwoods when they visit for the first time. Driving and walking through the tallest trees on earth really has a way of making your problems feel small! I hope you get the chance to check it out!

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  1. […] Read my Avenue of the Giants Guide […]

  2. Rhonda on October 23, 2021 at 3:02 pm

    The redwoods are magnificent. I was in awe standing next to them and driving the road with them towering overhead on both sides is quite surreal.

  3. Venaugh on October 23, 2021 at 4:06 pm

    These are some amazing spots! Those trees are amazingly coloured and look so strong with so much history in them..imagine all they’ve seen in their time.

  4. ildiko on October 23, 2021 at 5:19 pm

    Wow, Wow, Wow!! This is so cool. I want to go here. I guess I never appreciated how tall and GIANT these trees are. Pinned and on my list to visit! Btw, your photos with you and your friend in them are excellent for perspective!

  5. Hannah on October 23, 2021 at 11:35 pm

    I really want to visit the Avenue of the Giants! The trees look huge in photos but I don’t think I will fully grasp the scale until I see them in person! Founder’s Grove Trail looks like a magical place to explore and I’d love to drive through the tree! Thanks for the great guide, I can’t wait to visit!

  6. Krista on October 24, 2021 at 5:43 am

    This would be such an amazing route to follow in person! Those trees are enormous – I’d love to get some photos with them!

  7. simplyjolayne on October 24, 2021 at 9:09 am

    We visited the Redwoods a couple of years ago and absolutely loved them. We always take for the granted the beautiful places we live; the first site is always magical. The goal is to keep that magic alive.

  8. Diane ryan on May 3, 2022 at 1:50 pm

    Which is best to see the redwoods? Ave of Giants, Navarro river redwoods state park or Redwood National Park. Going north from Napa to Olympic state park and don’t have time to see all three. Thank you.

    • Miss Rover on May 3, 2022 at 2:17 pm

      I have not been to Navarro, but Avenue of the giants would be my choice! It is easy to access and has some of the tallest trees. There is a scenic alternative road that runs parallel to the 101 that is available at the avenue of giants as well that is very lovely! Founders grove is a quick, but incredible hike with a walking tour pamphlet available. This is typically where I take my friends visiting for the first time! Hope this helps 🙂

  9. Daniel on June 27, 2022 at 7:45 pm

    Love the Avenue of the giants there’s a tree there ‘called the love tree’people put tiny love notes on it…such a beautiful awesome place*****

  10. […] There are some really easy drive up spots and quick stop spots that I recommend! Check out my full blog post with all the details HERE! […]

  11. Debi Hawkes on November 18, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    The Avenue of the Giants is my happy place! I dont take vacations often (maybe every 4-6 years) but this is where I go when I finally do take one. I always stay at the Redcrest Resort on the Ave of the Giants; small cozy cabins with kitchens. Every trip I take up there helps center me and really makes me feel grounded and refreshed. I highly recommend visiting, and I do to anyone who will listen! 🙂 It is an absolutely amazing place that always makes me feels like that is where I’m meant to be.

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