There are big payoffs on the short but steep Top of the World hike in Laguna Beach. You'll climb through the coastal scrub of Aliso and Wood Canyon Wilderness Park until you reach the panoramic vista at Top of the World. From there, you'll have views from Catalina Island to Mt Baldy, and there's even a bench where you can soak it all in.
- Video & Turn by Turn Hike Directions
- How to Get to the Top of the World Hike
- Everything You Need to Know To Prepare for the Hike
When planning, always check the park website and social media to make sure the trails are open. Similarly, check the weather and road conditions.
If you just want to visit Top of the World without breaking a sweat, you can simply drive to Alta Laguna Park and stroll over to it. But if you want to get a short hike in too, this guide will get you there.
Where Is the Top of the World Trailhead?
The parking situation for the Top of the World hike could be better. A combination of hikers blocking driveways, aggressive ticketing, and locals not wanting visitors disturbing their residential vibe means it's best to avoid parking at the trailhead. Your best move is to park in a metered spot or parking lot a few blocks away. Use this address and find a place to park as close to the trailhead street on Canyon Acres Drive: 725 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, CA
If you park in the lot at 725 Laguna Canyon, it's about a 15-minute walk to the trailhead. Use this address for the trailhead: 580 Canyon Acres Dr, Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Gear for the Hike
Don't try this hike in casual clothes. At the very least wear fitness gear with good footwear. If you can, wear hiking shoes or boots and bring trekking poles for the steep climb and descent. There is no shade on the hike and it can get very hot. Bring 1L of water and stay hydrated.
My Latest Gear Picks
As a hiking guide, I test lots of hiking gear. On my picks page, I'll show you all of the gear that I actually use. I don't accept paid promotions or talk about the stuff that doesn't make the cut. It's just the gear that works best, so you don't have to waste your money.
Top of the World Trail Maps
Overall the Canyon Acres Trail is wide and easy to follow. There are a few junctions to be aware of, but if you use this guide, you will fine.
Top of the World Hike Directions
From here you just go back down the way you came. If you need to use a bathroom, pop over to Alta Laguna Park, just a minute or two from Top of the World.
Have a question about the guide or want to see what other people are saying/asking? View the Youtube comments for this video. Leave a comment and I will do my best to respond.
This Guide Was Written by Cris Hazzard
Hi, I'm Cris Hazzard, aka Hiking Guy, a professional outdoors guide, hiking expert, and author based in Southern California. I created this website to share all the great hikes I do with everyone else out there. This site is different because it gives detailed directions that even the beginning hiker can follow. I also share what hiking gear works and doesn't so you don't waste money. I don't do sponsored or promoted content; I share only the gear recommendations, hikes, and tips that I would with my family and friends. If you like the website and YouTube channel, please support these free guides (I couldn't do it without folks like you!).
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