Paradise Falls Trail In Thousand Oaks
Central Coast

How To Hike Paradise Falls Trail In Thousand Oaks

Paradise Falls Trail is a short and easy hike in Thousand Oaks that leads to a stunning 40-foot-tall waterfall. This is one of the few year-round waterfalls in Southern California so it’s an excellent trail to do any time of the year!

This hike is very family-friendly and we recently did it with our baby and our pup. There are a number of ways to reach Paradise Falls with an option to see a manmade teepee and a cave along the way.

In this guide, I cover how to get there, where to park, trail difficulty, and what you can expect to see along the Paradise Falls hike!

Teepee along Paradise Falls Trail

Paradise Falls Trail Highlights

Here are a few quick Paradise Falls trail highlights before I go into more details:

  • Length: 2.1 miles out and back
  • Elevation Gain: around 400 feet
  • Time Needed: 2 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Dogs Allowed?: Yes, this trail allows dogs on a leash
  • Swimming Allowed: No, swimming and cliff jumping is not allowed here
  • AllTrails Map: Wildwood Tepee and Paradise Falls via Mesa Trail
Hiking in Thousand Oaks

Paradise Falls Location & Parking

Paradise Falls is located within Wildwood Regional Park in Thousand Oaks, California. Wildwood Park is just an hour’s drive west of Los Angeles and 40 minutes from Ventura. Paradise Falls is one of the most popular hikes in this region so it can get very crowded on the weekends.

To reach Paradise Falls Trailhead take Highway 101 to the Lynn Road exit in Thousand Oaks. Make a left on W Avenida De Los Arboles and follow this road to the Wildwood Regional Park parking lot.

Trailhead for Paradise Falls hike in Thousand Oaks.

There are many different trails that you can hike at Wildwood Regional Park with varying distances and difficulty levels. On our visit, we chose to hike the shortest route that leads to Paradise Falls which came out to around 2 miles round trip.

This route starts at the Mesa Trailhead which has a large visitor parking lot for hikers. There is a porta potty within the parking lot and a large information sign at the trailhead. It is free to park and hike this trail.

Paradise Falls Address: Mesa Trailhead, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

About Paradise Falls Trail

Paradise Falls is managed by the Conejo Open Space Conservation Agency which was created to protect and preserve open spaces like this in Conejo Valley.

The trails at Wildwood Regional Park are shared by hikers, cyclists, and equestrians. During the hike be sure to keep an eye out for bikes and horses.

There are several hiking routes that you can take to Paradise Falls on your visit:

Many trails intersect at this park so I recommend using the AllTrails hiking app to make sure you stay on track.

Wildwood Regional Park hiking trails.

We had our baby and dog with us so we chose to hike the shortest option. For the most part, this route is fairly easy with only 400 feet of elevation gain.

The route that we chose is short enough that we could complete it in a couple of hours. We hiked this trail in April when the surrounding scenery was very green from recent rainfall.

Paradise Falls Thousand Oaks Map:

There is a steep section with narrow switchbacks at the end that can be challenging coming back up. You don’t need special gear to do this trail but hiking poles can help with this last section.

Paradise Falls is a year-round waterfall. Unlike other Southern California waterfalls that dry up by the end of spring, even in the summer months Paradise Falls has water flowing down the cliff.

Paradise Falls is one of the best hikes in Thousand Oaks!

If you plan to do this hike in the summer, this area does get very hot. There is no shade along this trail so it’s best to do it in the early morning.

Be sure to bring a hiking hatsunscreen, and plenty of water bottles for the adventure, especially when the weather starts getting warmer. There is a water fountain by the Teepee halfway into the trail with drinking water.

Wildwood Regional Park allows dogs on a leash. This area has a lot of rattlesnakes so it’s best to keep your dog close to you and not let them go off the trail.

My Experience Hiking To Paradise Falls In Thousand Oaks

Here is the detailed breakdown of the Paradise Falls hike covering what the trail is like and what you can expect to see along it!

From the trailhead, we passed through a large gate and followed Mesa Trail along a wide dirt road. This park gate in spring was open until 9 pm for hikers and visitors.

In around 0.4 miles we reached a junction in the road. We went to the left and followed the signs for “Teepee and Paradise Falls”.

At the first junction, go left for the shortest route option.

The next section goes through rolling hills that look very scenic in the spring months. We saw lots of wildflowers and cacti growing along the way.

Soon after you will reach a manmade teepee structure where you can take a rest break in the shade. There is a water fountain outside the teepee where you can get some drinking water.

The teepee structure is pretty large and has seating underneath it. We took a break here to cool down once the sun started coming out.

Wildwood Tepee via Mesa Trail

From here you can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the lush valleys all around.

From the teepee, we took the wide road down the hill and made a left to start climbing down steep switchbacks to the waterfall. This part of the trail is very narrow and very steep so watch your step.

Steep section at the end of the Paradise Falls Thousand Oaks hike.

At the end of the switchbacks, you will reach a small, shaded area with picnic-style tables. From there continue on and take the stairs all the way down to the river.

Shaded picnic table before the waterfall.
Stairs that lead down to the waterfall.

The hike ends at the 40-foot-tall Paradise Falls. There is some space for people to spread out and enjoy views of the waterfall, but the ground is very rocky so use caution as you make your way around.

If you don’t mind getting your shoes wet, my favorite view was located across the river. You will need to cross the river but in March I barely got my feet wet.

Paradise Falls in Wildwood Park

This area does not allow any swimming or cliff jumping. The pool at this falls contains lots of rocks and urban runoff water so it is not safe for swimming or diving.

Other Visitor Tips

Here are a few tips to keep in mind for hiking the Thousand Oaks Paradise Falls trail:

  • Wildwood Regional Park is open to visitors from sunrise to sunset.
  • This park does allow dogs, but they must be kept on a short leash and cleaned up after. There are some trash cans along the trail for waste disposal.
  • There are many wild animals that live in this preserve. During the hike keep an eye out for rattlesnakes, coyotes, and mountain lions.
  • Much of this area is overgrown with poison oak. Bring poison oak scrub on the hike in case you accidentally touch it.
  • There is only one porta potty at the visitor parking lot and none once you enter the trail.
  • I always pack a first aid kitheadlamp, and a portable phone charger, even on a short hike. It’s always best to go prepared!
  • In the warmer months, I recommend wearing sunscreenlip balm, a hiking hat, and polarized sunglasses to battle the harsh California sun. Most of this trail is exposed to the sun with very few trees.

Ready to explore the stunning Paradise Falls in California? Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below!

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This post is written by Laura Sausina. Hi, I’m a California local and the founder of the California Wanderland travel blog. I currently live in Ventura County and help 30,000 readers a month discover things to do in Central California! Read more about me here.

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