In this blog post, we’ve shortlisted the 15 best things to do in Novato, California that you should definitely consider if you want to make the most of your Novato trip.
A wealthy and active population supports a number of well-attended events and organizations in the quiet but historically significant town of Novato, which is located in the San Francisco Bay region.
Horse riding, excursions, art, theatres, the historic downtown district, and hopping are just a few of the family-friendly things to do in Novato.
Gifted with a great array of museums and galleries in this tiny location, you might easily spend the entire holiday simply checking out cultural displays.
With several preserved wildlife parks located close to the city, Novato is likewise surrounded by nature. Check to visit some of Novato’s more wild areas once you’ve had your fill of the quaint old town.
Here are the 15 best things to do in Novato, California. Let’s discuss them one by one.
We love this Wine Country Tour of Napa or Sonoma from Novato.
Best Things to Do in Novato, California
1. Space Station Museum
A fantastic charity organization called the Space Station Museum is maintained by several really passionate space enthusiasts. Al Warden of Apollo 15 is among the well-known astronauts who have volunteered to assist in managing the tiny museum.
Throughout time, the museum’s holdings have expanded to encompass a wide range of tools, including control panels, space suits, duplicate lunar landers, and even space undergarments. It’s also a must to view the really stylish throwback Soviet spacesuits.
Surprisingly, a sizable neighborhood has grown up around the museum, big enough to hold frequent space festivals and stargazing activities.
- Location: 464 Ignacio Blvd Pacheco Plaza, Novato, CA, United States
- Visiting Hours: 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
- Famous for: Compact yet personal exhibition of memorabilia, Has been there for fifty years of human space travel.
More than 450 different types of wild mushrooms may be found in Marin County’s humid and forested surroundings.
Foraging is thus becoming a more well-liked pastime in the area. Several organizations, such as the well-known ForageSF, provide frequent foraging trips across Novato City.
If you decide to go foraging, it’s important to seek out expert assistance because the regulations are complicated.
You’ll be given instructions on both how to cook and prepare mushrooms as well as how to avoid risky toxic mushrooms with the aid of a guide.
- Location: 351 San Andreas Dr, Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: Tuesday to Friday- 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Saturday- 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, Sunday-Monday- Closed
- Famous for: It has more than 3,600 acres of natural space, Novato is a paradise for bike riding and hiking.
3. Horse Riding at Morning Star Farm
Which greater method for seeing Novato’s expansive landscape than on horseback?
Both adults and kids may rent horses at Morning Star Farm, a local landmark. Located on Novato Creek, you may expect to experience some amazing animals while riding.
For those who wish to make the most of their visit, there is a small picnic area and a petting zoo on the farm itself.
- Location: 885 Sutro Ave, Novato, CA 94947, United States
- Visiting Hours: 24*7
- Famous for: The lovely equestrian center Morning Star Farm is situated adjacent to Novato Creek.
4. Olompali State Historic Park
A natural preserve now known as Olompali State Historic Park was originally a Miwok Native hamlet that was inhabited continuously for approximately 8,000 years.
Nowadays, several buildings from the region’s post-colonial era that date to the 18th and 19th centuries are still intact.
The little visitor’s center does an excellent job of illuminating the local history, particularly the infamous Battle of Olompali, fought here in 1846.
- Location: 8901, Redwood Blvd, Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: 9 am to 5 pm
- Famous for: The greatest preserved home north of San Francisco Bay is found in this park.
5. Hamilton Field History Museum
During World War II, Hamilton Field served as a significant regional air force facility and remained operational until 1974. This little museum, while usually going unnoticed, is among the greatest in the area.
It contains a fantastic study library with a selection of wartime materials, and admission is free. The exhibitions are lined with medals and equipment, and the cockpit simulator is a lot of fun if you’re an older child.
- Location: 555 Hangar Ave, Novato, CA, 94949, United States
- Visiting Hours: Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday- 12 pm to 4 pm
- Famous for: Many items from the base’s glory days are housed there along with a cockpit simulator, uniforms, insignia, and medals.
6. Novato Town Hall
The old town of Novato is made up of various 19th-century structures, including the eerie Carpenter Gothic-style town hall’s Crimson tower. Several of the structures in this charming area have intriguing and lengthy histories.
The Druid’s Hall, a grand structure lined with an amazing collection of deer heads, is home to a bit of a weird esoteric society if taxidermy doesn’t spook you off.
If you find it all a little strange, relax with a beer or a coffee on the picturesque downtown streets.
- Location: 901 Sherman Ave, Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: 24*7
- Famous for: The original location was at the Novato Town Hall, which was initially constructed in 1896.
7. Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve
The city of Novato has Mount Burdell as its natural background. Even though it’s a little mountain, you can still enjoy some lovely views of the whole Bay Area from it. Go to the top by using the Eagle Rim path.
For leisurely treks and outdoor lunches, the Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve is perfect. Take in the view of the many, free-ranging cattle that graze contentedly in the hillside meadows.
- Location: Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: 6:00 am to 10:00 pm
- Famous for: It preserves climbs to a sweeping top.
8. Novato History Museum
In contrast to the nearby American Indian Museum, Novato’s history museum is a good choice. The two primary civilizations in the Marin area are depicted via them as a whole.
It provides you with a sense of life in this historic Californian town and is a treasure mine of knickknacks from the 19th century.
With the aid of records, artifacts, and historical accounts, the museum’s displays take you on a historical tour of the neighborhood.
- Location: 815 De Long Ave, Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: Wednesday-Friday: 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, Saturday-Sunday: 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
- Famous for: Great list of antiques and mementos linked to the history of the Air Force Base at the museum.
9. Rush Creek
One of the less used and more tranquil hiking routes in the region is this unspoiled natural setting.
In this town, bird viewing is very popular, not only because peregrine falcons occasionally visit the stream. While increasing in number, these birds are still rather uncommon.
- Location: Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: 24*7
- Famous for: Several hundred acres of open marshes and forests are available.
10. Crave Restaurant
Crave is one of the more avant-garde dining establishments. It is located in a magnificent modern restaurant with tasteful decor, and its cooks specialize in creating novel meals and interesting pairings employing food from farms to tables.
The cuisine here is a component of the legendary fusion cuisine of California. These meals are excellent representations of a variety of culinary cultures.
- Location: 340 Ignacio Blvd, Novato, CA 94949, United States
- Visiting Hours: 10 am to 10 pm
- Famous for: Famous for the scrumptious food it offers.
11. Point Reyes
Point Reyes is a mountainous coastline that is stunning both on a sunny day and during local storms when the waves break over the tip.
The delicate balance of nature has been meticulously kept in this protected region, where both land and marine wildlife flourish.
In this rugged and windy region of California, the coast’s iconic lighthouse is a well-known pilgrimage spot.
- Location: 9 Goldfinch CT, Novato, CA 94947, United States
- Visiting Hours: 6:00 am to 12:00 am
- Famous for: Famous for the legacy of its lighthouse.
12. Marin Contemporary Art Museum
This museum is a lot more than simply a gallery; it is a haven for artists in the Marin County area.
Local artists use the building’s several studio spaces, and you may stop by and speak with the artists who are using them. Young aspiring artists will find it extremely inspirational.
For a tiny community, the museum is extremely lively and contemporary, and the expansive gallery area often changes its exhibitions.
It’s also worth taking a peek at the structure itself, which is an eccentric interpretation of the Spanish Mission architecture.
- Location: 500 Palm Dr, Novato, CA 94949, United States
- Visiting Hours: Wednesday to Friday: 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, Saturday-Sunday: 11:00 am to 5:00 pm. Monday-Tuesday: Closed
- Famous for: book exhibition.
13. Museum of the American Indian
The Miwok who resided in Novato had several fascinating customs, such as using chalk and charcoal to paint their whole bodies in black and white stripes.
The Marin County Museum of the American Indian preserves knowledge of this small ethnic group by displaying their history and culture. Frequent displays also include relics from many Native American tribes from around North America.
A Miwok settlement formerly stood where the museum now stands, and the area’s parks are also worth visiting.
- Location: 2200 Novato Blvd, Novato, CA 94947, United States
- Visiting Hours: Tuesday to Thursday- 11:00 am to 3:00 PM, Friday to Monday- Closed
- Famous for: Collection of North and South American artwork and artifacts.
14. Farmer’s Market
This regular market contains several food stalls selling a wide variety of regional and international foods, making it a fantastic place to sample the finest of the area’s goods.
The more creative locals from the greater San Francisco Bay region also come here to sell their handmade goods.
It’s a great area to shop on a summer afternoon, located in the heart of Novato’s old-town neighborhood.
For a fun activity to do with the kids, check out the hayrides.
- Location: 7th St, Novato CA, 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
- Famous for: Pony rides, bouncy houses, and live music are available at Farmers’ Market for the youngsters, as well as for the entire family.
15. Trek Winery
Trek Winery is a family-run winery located in the center of Novato. Learn how to make wine or how to identify aromatic notes during a tasting session by taking a class here.
Trek serves as a vibrant center for the neighborhood and draws a variety of local performers, such as stand-up comedians and musicians.
Come here while a band is playing and enjoy being serenaded while sipping wine.
- Location: 1026 Machin Ave, Novato, CA 94945, United States
- Visiting Hours: Wednesday-Thursday: 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm, Friday-Saturday: 3:00 pm to 10:00 pm, Sunday: 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm, Monday-Tuesday: Closed
- Famous for: Classic and delicious wine
Final Words – Best Things to do in Novato, CA
As Novato was formerly a region of Miwok Indians, who dwelt in settlements at the foot of Mount Burdell, it is replete with rich history and culture.
When on holiday in Novato, you may explore a number of museums and galleries as well as the downtown area’s historic structures.
The city is surrounded by acres of green space, lovely parks, and wildlife habitats, making it the ideal place to get in touch with nature.
We highly recommend you visit Novato and must explore the best things to do in Novato that are mentioned in this blog post.
Book this Wine Country Tour of Napa or Sonoma from Novato.
FAQs – Best Things to do in Novato, California
1. What are the top attractions to visit in Novato?
Space Station Museum, Horse Riding at Morning Star Farm, Trek Winery, Museum of the American Indian, Marin Contemporary Art Museum, Crave Restaurant, and Mount Burdell Open Space Preserve are the best attractions in Novato.
2. What are the best restaurants in Novato?
Crave Restaurant, Grazie Restaurant, Cocina Antigua, Chianti Cucina, and Toast Novato Restaurant are the best restaurants in Novato.
3. What are the best accommodation options in Novato?
The best accommodation options in Novato are Hotel Petaluma, Quality Inn Petaluma, Marin Lodge, Panama Hotel, and Hotel Mac & Suites.
4. Is Novato worth visiting?
It is without a doubt worthwhile to travel to Novato because it has so much to offer all types of tourists.