A Gourmet Mayberry

Population: 11,897

Average 2003 home price: $833,000

If developer Charles Wright’s wife knew her plants, this picturesque Central Marin town would be called Lupine. She thought the lovely wild flowers blooming near her new homestead were, instead, Larkspur.

Larkspur is perhaps the town closest to San Francisco with a close to ideal climate. Most of the city is tucked inland, where the winds seldom blow and the summer fog clears early in the day.

This charming town is best known for it’s culinary delights. Several notable restaurants line the main (and only) downtown street. Community spirit thrives here. A group has recently renovated the downtown’s old movie theater, The Lark. Larkspur’s boundaries include the Larkspur Landing waterfront area, including the Larkspur Landing Ferry Terminal.

What To See

Besides several tiny neighborhood parks, Larkspur has one large park, Piper Park, complete with ball fields, playground, tennis courts, and other sports facilities. Be sure to sit outside at Rulli’s authentic Italian Pasticerria to get the flavor of the town and its people, or at bustling Equator Coffee, or have lunch under the redwoods at Perry’s.


Larkspur has an average temperature of around 59 degrees, with an average maximum temperature of 70 degrees and an average low of 48. From July to September, highs get into the 80s. The coldest months are November and December. Mount Tamalpais and Christmas Tree Hill usually protect the town from perpetual fog, but it does get some, especially on summer mornings.


This varies greatly by neighborhood. There are many large hillside homes in Madrone Canyon, and many expanded homes in older central neighborhoods. The Meadowood subdivision has large nicely landscaped properties in a rare planned development. Creekside is a planned unit development with numerous single family homes, so on Corte Madera Creek. Rivieria Circle area across from Redwood High School has larger homes, many on inland water ways. Rose Lane was built a few years ago, and includes large, newer homes as well as over 40 condominiums, restricted for occupancy by people 55 and older.


The Larkspur/Corte Madera School District has recently completed major renovations of its elementary and middle schools, with big new gymnasiums, science lab, etc., supported by a local tax proposition. Several private schools are located here, including Marin Primary and St. Patrick Catholic School, right across from the city hall and library.

And Redwood High School, what many consider to be the finest in the county, is located here.


Kids and families rule here, with a championship Twin Cities Little League baseball organization, and some serious girls volleyball, with youth CYO and club teams feeding into regional girls volleyball champion team at Redwood High School. Many swim teams, both recreation and U.S. Swim League. Tennis at parks is free. Many mountain bikers access Mt. Tam trails from here. The annual food and flower festival is held at the former Escalle Winery on the way to Kentfield, and various street festivals are held along Magnolia during the year.

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