Mill Valley is located in beautiful Marin County, one of the most picturesque areas in Northern California. The town is located to the north of San Francisco, across the world-famous Golden Gate Bridge. It takes only about 15 minutes to go from San Francisco to Mill Valley but when you walk down the streets of this lovely town, it feels worlds away from the city. The town of Mill Valley has the charm of a small European town, made better by the facilities of a sophisticated urban area. Many people come to Mill Valley for its rich variety of cultural events, to dine at the fine restaurants, to shop and enjoy recreational activities.
Mill Valley is a small and intimate city with a total area of 4.8 square miles. Two streams that begin from the slopes of Mt. Tamalpais, the Arroyo Corte Madera del Presidio and Cascade Creek flow through Mill Valley to the bay.
Mill Valley is a few miles northwest from Richardson Bay where terrain is primarily coastal lands and marshes. The town is nested at the foot of beautiful Mount Tamalpais in an area that has narrow wooded canyons and an abundance of second-growth redwoods. Nearby cities include Tiburon to the east, Corte Madera in the north. The town limits are almost adjacent to the boundaries of Golden Gate National Recreational Area (GGNRA) to the south.
Mill Valley, like the rest of Marin County enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate with winter rains and for the most, sunny, clear California-style days. Mill Valley has a unique microclimate as a result of the numerous box canyons with sheer north-facing slopes and dense forests at the city’s southern and western limits and the dense coastal fog which rises over the hills. The area around Mill Valley is much cooler and moister than other regions near it. This microclimate is ideal for the Coastal Redwood forests which to this day cover much of the town and surrounding areas.
One of the scenes you will witness during a visit to Mill Valley in the early morning is the thick blanket of fog that crests the surrounding coastal hills and pours into the valleys. Sometimes Mill Valley is covered in fog even while the weather is hot and dry further inland.
On a typical summer day temperatures will often not rise above 65 degrees. Winter day time highs average around 55 degrees and temperatures rarely dip below 43 degrees at night. Summer day time highs range typically in the 70s while night time lows are around 56 degrees. There is little humidity averaging between 20 and 40 percent except for the rains in winter.
The rainy season begins in late autumn and lasts till early spring. Heavy rains fall during the winter months, December, January, and February. Annual rainfall in Mill Valley is approximately 35 inches.
In 2010 Mill Valley had a population of 13,903 (the United States Census). Mill Valley’s demographic has a diverse ethnic and racial background with people of Caucasian descent, African American, Native American, Hispanic or Latino, Asian, Pacific Islander, and other races. Some people identified themselves as people with backgrounds of two or more races.
Schools in Mill Valley were rated 9 out of a possible 10 on the Great Schools website. There are 12 preschools, nine elementary schools, six middle schools, and one high school. Seven of these are public schools and 15 are private schools. Public schools are managed by the Mill Valley School District. There are five elementary schools and one middle school, Mill Valley Middle School, a four-time winner of the California Distinguished School Award. Tamalpais High School is part of the Tamalpais Union High School District, whose five campuses serve students in central and southern Marin County.
Mill Valley's quality of life, access to schools and proximity to San Francisco has made it popular for many high-income commuters. Over the last 20 years, like the rest of the Bay Area, home prices have climbed in Mill Valley. In July 2005, Mill Valley ranked tenth on the list of the 100 Best Places to Live in the United States conducted by "CNN" and "Money" magazines. In 2007, Mill Valley took the seventy-third place on "MSN" and "Forbes" magazine’s "Most expensive zip codes in America" list.