9.0 out of 10

Mill Valley

Ranked 3rd best city in California
37.9075698706488 -122.547626646821
Great for
  • Schools
  • Clean & Green
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Neighborly Spirit
Not great for
  • No ratings yet
Who lives here?
  • Tourists
  • Country Lovers
  • Trendy & Stylish
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids


5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Feb 23, 2015

"Closest Redwoods to San Francisco"

Quaint, trendy town in midst of Redwoods and upscale hipsters, I enjoy(ed) living in Mill Valley for many reasons: Nature, great restaurants, fresh organic living, conscientious people. But sometimes, the cold, grey weather got to me and people can be a bit self-absorbed. Overall, it is one of the very best small towns where you can enjoy living peacefully. Population is mostly well educated and globally minded while still focusing on living the good life. Great for outdoor fun. Mountain, beach, redwood forest, near SF, easy drive to sunny weather when needed, usually, so much to enjoy there.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Tourists
  • Hipsters
  • Country Lovers
  • Trendy & Stylish
  • Beach Lovers

"One of Marin's Most Popular Cities for a Reason"

Not many suburban communities boast a vibrant downtown with loads of dining and entertainment, a rich artistic history, and extraordinary access to nature. But Mill Valley has all those things in spades, along with excellent schools and a tight-knit community.

It’s easy to take in Mill Valley’s physical beauty almost anywhere in town, from your home’s deck to the many nearby trails, including Tennessee Valley, the Dipsea, and Matt Davis. In addition, both Muir Woods National Monument and Mount Tamalpais State Park are adjacent to the city of 14,050.

Mill Valley’s connection to the arts runs deep. Well-known residents have included musicians such as Jerry Garcia and Janis Joplin and Beat writers Jack Kerouac and Gary Snyder.

In January, the Sweetwater Music Hall reopened with help from the Grateful Dead’s Bob Weir, paying homage to the original concert venue of the same name, which started hosting performances in 1972. Now in its 56th year, the Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival still attracts crowds, and the 46-year-old Marin Theatre Company puts on six shows a year.

Downtown, the 142 Throckmorton Theatre offers film, theater, and music in an intimate setting, and comedian Robin Williams sometimes drops in to practice new material in front of an audience. The California Film Institute’s Mill Valley Film Festival has been bringing independent and world cinema to the Bay Area for 35 years.

The punishing but beautiful Dipsea Race – the oldest trail race in the U.S. – takes place each year on the second Sunday in June.

A community gathering space, the Depot Bookstore & Cafe is located on the main plaza. Other popular businesses include restaurateur Tyler Florence’s El Paseo, Vasco, Piazza D’Angelo, and the Buckeye Roadhouse.

Dive bar the 2am Club has been around in one form or another since 1906.

The city continues to attract young families and professionals with its strong schools and proximity to San Francisco. In 2012 the Mill Valley School District earned an overall state Academic Performance Index score of 944 out of a possible 1,000. Tamalpais High School received an 864.

Mill Valley homes for sale vary in style, but many have a craftsman influence. Homes in the hills tend to offer decks with astonishing views, while those in flatter areas like Sycamore and Tamalpais parks and Strawberry may feature yards.

In September 2013 the median sales price for a single-family home in Mill Valley was $1.02 million, up 13 percent from a year ago, according to MLS data.

Homes in Mill Valley are definitely in demand. In September, the months' supply of inventory (MSI) was 1.3, down from 2.1 in September 2012. Overall, the MSI in Marin County is currently 1.8.
  • Schools
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 4/5

"Cosmopolitan with a small town vibe.."

Traditionally, the American Dream has been to live in a place with samll town sensibilities and views while being within 10 min of a world class city. Mill Valley nails it!! Great community spirit, schools, downtown, culrtural events and natural beauty. All around, great place to live!

Unranked Neighborhoods in Mill Valley

"Peaceful with towering redwoods yet close to the City"
37.9170080947418 -122.550965868092
"Cascade Canyon, Mill Valley"
37.9069467732292 -122.564231280018


"The best of both worlds"
37.9056282017597 -122.548610127892
"Average downtown street in a great town"
37.9005320301026 -122.542271750169
"Peaceful with towering redwoods yet close to the City"
37.9158481291243 -122.55433559418

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