UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden

by admin

 The Deets

Location: Davis, CA
: Easy
Distance: 3.5 miles
Exposure: Partial Sun
Bikes Allowed: Yes
Dog Friendly:


Parking: $9 – Free Sat&Sun
Yes – Plumbing
Doggie Bags:
 Picnic Area & Benches
 Yes – On Trail
Drinking Water:

Helpful Info

From I-80, exit Richards Blvd. Head north and make a left on 1st St. Turn left on Old Davis Road and the visitor parking lot is on your left. Parking is $9 during the week, but free on Saturday and Sunday. Walk back up Old Davis Road and you will come to the main path running under the bridge.

Trail Map: UC Davis

Current Weather: Davis, CA

Best Time to Travel: Year Round


About this Hike

The UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden is a well maintained oasis of plant and animal life right in downtown Davis. More of a dog friendly nature walk than a hike, take an easy stroll through botanical gardens, redwood forest, and wildflowers, all while moving alongside the Putah Creek.

This Walk has Everything!

Flowers, grassy areas, animals, water features, and doggos. Only thing missing is a taco truck! Ducks, loons, squirrels, fish, and so many turtles! Wide paths and signage describing the plant life.

Open Areas

There are several stops along the walk that have open grass areas with shade. Perfect for a picnic, reading a book, or taking a break with your four legged best friend.

UC Davis Arboretum

A Taste of Paris

They may have removed the locks from Pont de Artes in Paris, but the tradition lives on on several of the bridges at the Arboretum.


Given that you’re actually on UC Davis campus, there are nice water fountains and restroom facilities along the walk. It’s fun to see how everything is actually art and has a deeper meaning on this campus.


Plenty of great seating along the way. Pull up to a bench, check out the gazebo, or just plop down on a log.

Under Construction

Part of the pathway is under construction until Summer 2020. The walk is still very enjoyable and there are easy to follow detour signs to keep you on track.

Notes from the Dog

I like walking in dirt, but not a lot of dirt here. Lots of dogs to know and I learned so many new smells. I got hot, so I laid in a puddle. Mom doesn’t like that because it makes her car brown. Her car is white. I saw a squirrel, but it didn’t go in the tree. It went in the ground. Now I’m not sure it’s a squirrel.

Don’t Want to Bum You Out, But…

These are some things to consider when going on this hike. In no way should these things prevent you from going, I just wanted you let you know!

  • The path can get pretty crowded. Not like Disneyland or anything, but kinda crowded for a  nature walk.
  • If you visit Monday-Friday, parking is $9, which is a little steep. Go on a Saturday and Sunday and spend the $9 on beer instead.

Additional Links

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