Del Cerro Park★★★★★Incredible views of the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island. Also easy to get to and park. I haven’t tried any of the hiking trails in the area yet, but I keep meaning to.
George F Canyon★★★★★A quiet hike along a seasonal streambed. Shady for the first part, then opens up. Beware of poison oak. City view at the summit. Birds, rabbits, butterflies.
Prickly Pear Trail★★★★☆Short loop with some steep sections. Lots of cactus. (Keep your balance!) Nice views of the ocean and Point Vicente Lighthouse.
South Coast Botanic Garden★★★★★Big enough to feel like you could get lost (but not big enough to get lost), packed with trails that feel like walking through nature, surrounded by more structured gardens. Great for events, families or just getting out for a walk.