Millbrae is a city on the Peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. It is south of San Bruno and north of Burlingame. It is very close to San Francisco International Airport and is an important Bay Area transit hub because it has the southernmost BART station on the Peninsula and is served by Caltrain.
The large 1 Millbrae Transit Center is near the intersection of El Camino Real and Millbrae Avenue. It is served by BART, Caltrain, and SamTrans. This is the terminating BART station for trains going south from San Francisco, so it is a common transfer point for people connecting between BART and Caltrain. There is a BART spur to the San Francisco International Airport (SFO IATA) just north of the Millbrae Station.
You can catch a Caltrain at Millbrae for points further south on the peninsula (a few travel down to Gilroy). Caltrains going north from Millbrae all terminate in San Francisco at 4th and King Streets. If your destination in San Francisco or your point of departure from San Francisco is anywhere near the 4th & King Caltrain station (near the South Beach area of SOMA), you should take the Caltrain rather than BART. The Caltrain trip between San Francisco and Millbrae is 18 minutes ("baby bullet"), 20 minutes (express), or 31 minutes (local). BART takes 36 minutes to San Francisco's Montgomery Station, and Caltrain is a far more pleasant ride. However, Caltrain takes more planning; it runs less frequently with more limited hours than BART.
The San Mateo Transit District, samTrans, provide bus service around Millbrae and beyond.
- 1 Bayfront Park, 1-99 Old Bayshore Hwy. A park by the bay with good views of the planes taking off and landing at SFO. A nice to relax for a few minutes, especially if you're biking through or staying at one of the hotels nearby.
- 2 Millbrae Train Museum, California Drive and Murchison Drive (near the transit center), ☏ . Saturdays 10AM–2PM.
If you're looking for a way to pass the time while waiting for a Caltrain connection, the Spur Trail is probably your best bet. Most other activities are either a little too far from the transit center or have very limited hours.
- 1 Millbrae Art & Wine Festival, Broadway Avenue between Victoria and Meadow Glen. Labor Day weekend. Big, popular street festival with food, crafts, music, and entertainment. Held annually since 1970.
- 2 Spur Trail. A paved walking trail with fields, trees, and some areas for sports. It's split into two sections.
- 3 Spur Trail (Northern Section). The northern segment of the trail has a north-south orientation. The trail begins on Richmond Drive on the northwest corner of Taylor Middle School. It goes uphill slightly as it heads southeast into a grove of oak and eucalyptus trees. From then on, the linear trail goes into an open field and runs just to the west of the middle school. Heading into another patch of eucalyptus trees, the trail crosses two streets as it skirts the southwest corner of the middle school. South of the middle school, the twisty trail ascends and descends through some grassly woodlands until it ends on Hillcrest Drive.
- 4 Spur Trail (Southern Section), along Milbrae Ave (a few blocks west of the transit center). Located about half a mile (800 m) south of the northern segment, the southern part of the Spur trail has an east-west orientation. It begins on South Ashton Drive close to where Millbrae Creek dives underground. The trail heads east through a grove filled with different types of trees, ranging from oak and Monterey Pine to the west to mostly eucalyptus to the east. The trail roughly parallels Millbrae Creek for a tiny distance where the creek re-emerges from the ground but then disappears underground under the path. As the trail twists and turns through the Spur property parkland, it parallels Millbrae Avenue and skirts the northern friges of Mills High School's running track/football and baseball fields. The trail turns by a skatepark and several tennis courts before terminating on the corner of Millbrae and Magnolia Drive about two blocks away from the transit center.
- 5 Crystal Springs Regional Trail (Sawyer Camp Trail, San Andreas Trail). A trail to the west of Millbrae for walking and biking. The northern part is called the San Andreas segment, the middle part is called the Sawyer Camp segment, and further south is the Crystal Springs segment. Map.
- 1 Farmers' Market, Broadway between La Cruz Ave and Victoria Ave. Saturdays 8AM–1PM.
- 2 Millbrae Market, 1 Rollins Rd. A gas station convenience store. Close enough that you might be able to hurry over and grab a snack or a drink while you wait for the next train. Also one of the closest places to the train station that has free, clean restrooms open to the public.
- 1 El Rancho Inn, 1100 El Camino Real, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 2 The Millwood, 1375 El Camino Real, ☏ , toll-free: , ✉ email@example.com.
- 3 The Dylan Hotel at SFO, 110 South El Camino Real, ☏ . A family-owned boutique hotel that was remodeled in 2014. Amenities include 24-hour airport shuttle and free parking.
- 4 The Westin San Francisco Airport, 1 Old Bayshore Highway, ☏ .
- 5 Aloft San Francisco Airport, 401 E Millbrae Ave, ☏ .