Murphys Travel Guide

Discover the best things to see, do, and eat in Murphys, California. This comprehensive travel guide includes insider tips, must-see attractions, and information on transportation, accommodations, and local customs.

Murphys, California, a charming town in Calaveras County in Gold Country, is a paradise for nature lovers, history buffs, and foodies alike. Surrounded by rolling hills and vineyards, this small town offers visitors a perfect blend of natural beauty, historic landmarks, and delectable cuisine. In this comprehensive travel guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know before embarking on your adventure to Murphys.

Introduction to Murphys

Located in the heart of California’s Gold Country, Murphys is a picturesque town that attracts visitors from all over the world. Originally known as Murphys Camp after an American miner who discovered gold in the area in 1848, the town has since evolved into a destination for those seeking relaxation, adventure, and culture. With a population of just over 2,000 people, Murphys remains an enchanting and peaceful town that offers a true taste of the California Gold rush era.

List of Places to Visit in Murphys

No matter what your interests are, there’s something for everyone in Murphys. From historic landmarks to outdoor adventures, Murphys has a wide array of attractions that are sure to keep you entertained. Here are some of the must-visit places:

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • Murphys Old Timers Museum
  • Angels Camp Museum
  • Calaveras Big Trees State Park
  • Columbia State Historic Park

Natural Attractions of Murphys: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Moaning Caverns Adventure Park
  • Mercer Caverns
  • Indian Rock Vineyards
  • Lavender Ridge Farms

Hiking/Biking Routes of Murphys

Murphys’ natural beauty makes it the ideal destination for hiking and biking enthusiasts. Here are some of the most popular routes:

  • Arnold Rim Trail
  • West Side Trail
  • Murphys Historic Walking Tour

Best Things to Do in Murphys: Activities and Tours

There are plenty of things to do in Murphys, including:

  • Zip-lining at Moaning Cavern Adventure Park
  • Wine tasting at local vineyards
  • Gold panning at Columbia State Historic Park
  • Horseback riding at Zephyr Ranch

Week-Long Itinerary for Murphys

Day 1: Explore Murphys Historic Walking Tour Day 2: Visit Calaveras Big Trees State Park Day 3: Go wine tasting at local vineyards Day 4: Gold panning at Columbia State Historic Park Day 5: Explore Mercer Caverns Day 6: Go horseback riding at Zephyr Ranch Day 7: Visit Moaning Cavern Adventure Park

Food and Drink Scene of Murphys

Murphys is rightly famous for its food and drink scene, which incorporates an eclectic range of cuisines and culinary traditions. Here are some must-try dishes and local beverages:

Must-Try Dishes

  • Murphys Irish Stew
  • Murphys Cheeseburger Pie
  • Pork chops with tri-scalloped potatoes

Local Beverages

  • Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon at Hatcher Winery
  • Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc at Aloria Vineyards
  • Barrel-Aged Whiskey at Murphys Old Timers Tavern

Where to Stay in Murphys: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Murphys offers a wide range of accommodation options for all types of travelers and budgets:

  • Murphys Hotel
  • Victoria Inn
  • Murphys Inn Motel
  • Courtwood Inn

What to Buy in Murphys: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

  • Olive oil from Calaveras Olive Oil Company
  • Handmade soap from Marisolio Tasting Bar
  • Local artwork and pottery from Petroglyphe Gallery

Local Culture and Customs of Murphys

Murphys prides itself on its welcoming and laid-back community spirit. As such, there are some local customs that visitors should be aware of:

  • Always greet locals with a smile and a friendly hello
  • Dress appropriately for the weather and the occasion
  • Respect the environment and keep the town clean and litter-free

Best Time to Visit Murphys

The best time to visit Murphys is from May to September, when temperatures are warm and outdoor activities are in full swing. However, Murphys is a year-round destination, offering unique experiences in every season.

Do’s and Don’ts of Murphys


  • Try local cuisine and wine
  • Be respectful of the town’s rich history and culture
  • Explore the great outdoors


  • Litter or damage natural monuments
  • Be too loud or disruptive in public areas
  • Ignore local customs and traditions

Safety and Health

Murphys is considered a safe destination for travelers. Here are some tips to ensure your safety and health:

Safety in Murphys

  • Always be cautious when hiking or biking
  • Keep an eye on your belongings
  • Be mindful of uneven terrain and natural hazards

Health in Murphys

  • Stay hydrated during outdoor activities
  • Stay up-to-date on vaccinations before traveling
  • Be sure to have proper medical insurance coverage

Getting to Murphys: Transportation Options and Logistics

Murphys is easily accessible from several major airports and bus stations in the area.

Airports Near Murphys

  • Stockton Metropolitan Airport
  • Sacramento International Airport
  • Oakland International Airport

Bus Stations Near Murphys

  • Greyhound Bus Station in Modesto
  • Amtrak Bus Stop in San Andreas

Other Options

  • Renting a car is recommended for easier access to local attractions

How to Get Around in Murphys

Most attractions in Murphys are within walking distance of each other. However, renting a car or a bike is recommended for those who prefer more flexibility in their travel plans.

Where to Go Next from Murphys: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

Murphys is located near several other notable destinations, including:

  • Yosemite National Park
  • Lake Tahoe
  • San Francisco


Murphys, California, is indeed an enchanting destination that offers travelers a chance to appreciate the great outdoors, learn about local history and culture, and enjoy delicious food and drink. We hope this comprehensive travel guide has provided you with all the information you need to plan an unforgettable trip to Murphys.