Discover a selection of 1,000 vacation rentals in San Rafael, CA that are perfect for your trip. Whether you’re traveling with friends, family, or even pets, Vrbo vacation homes have the best amenities for hanging out with the people that matter most, including swimming pools and WiFi. Prices start at $85 per night, and houses and condos are popular options for a stay in San Rafael. Either way, you'll find a rental for everyone's needs.
Top rated rentals — San Rafael
Destination guide

Small town charm close to San Fran

From its 19th century Spanish Catholic mission to the legendary Skywalker Ranch, San Rafael is full of contrasts. It's the oldest settlement in California's Marin County which means there's plenty of history to discover. Whether you want to people watch in breezy City Plaza, hit the beach at China Camp State Park, or eat your way through one of California's best farmers' markets, San Rafael is an enticing slice of the Golden State. San Francisco sits just 20 miles to the south means you can tick off iconic attractions like Alcatraz Island, Golden Gate Bridge, and more.

Things to do

George Lucas meets the Golden State

Founded in 1817, the Mission San Rafael Arcangel once served as an infirmary for Native Americans. Today you can stroll around the reconstructed chapel, visit the pint-sized gift store, or enjoy a spell under the shade of a palm tree. For Star Wars fans, Skywalker Ranch is a no brainer. While it doesn't offer public tours, you can always stop to snap a selfie at the entrance gate. Just don't forget your lightsaber. You might not be able to stay on Skywalker Ranch, but with San Rafael vacation rentals you can unlock access to a host of rural properties.


Bayside summers in San Rafael

San Rafael swelters during the summer, when temperatures creep well into the 80s. It's a great time to visit the Bay Area, with vacationers flocking to enjoy the sunshine. The town gets particularly busy from Labor Day to Memorial Day and is eternally popular with travelers in search of an alternative to pricey San Francisco. Fall and winter can bring heavy rain and occasional frosts which means crowds taper off. If you're not planning on hiking or swimming, October to March can be a great time to enjoy a relaxed vacation in the Golden State.

Natural features

Discover state parks in San Rafael

From its lush rolling farmlands to its coastal marshes, San Rafael is a picturesque slice of the San Francisco Bay Area. If you're dreaming of rest and relaxation why not escape to the Californian countryside with San Rafael vacation rentals? While the sprawling Golden Gate National Recreation Area is just 10 miles to the south, most locals prefer China Camp State Park. It was once home to a Chinese shrimp fishing village, though today you'll find grassy picnic spots, family-friendly hiking trails, and sandy beaches that are perfect for swimming, kayaking, and paddle boarding.

How to get there

Transportation options to and around San Rafael

The nearest airport is in San Francisco Intl. Airport (SFO), located 25.9 mi (41.7 km) from the city center. If you're unable to find a flight that fits your schedule, you can also fly into Oakland Intl. Airport (OAK), which is 25 mi (40.3 km) away.

What are the top vacation rentals in or near San Rafael?

The heart wants what it wants, and right now it wants to go on vacation. It's time to pack your bags and zip off to one of these top vacation rentals in or near San Rafael:

  • Around 20 miles from the center of San Rafael, it's hard to beat "Yvetot. . . Secluded, Comfortable". It has 2 bedrooms and a range of conveniences like winery tours and a stovetop.
  • Alternatively, unpack your suitcase at "Lavender House Cottages, Classic Elegance In A Country Cottage". Around 17 miles from the heart of San Rafael, it has 2 bedrooms and features a dishwasher and a fridge.

For even more great options, use the search bar at the top of the page to find the perfect San Rafael vacation rental for you.

What are the top-rated vacation rentals for weekend getaways in or near San Rafael?

Forget about those chores, because weekends were made for having fun. Stay in one of these weekend getaways in and around San Rafael and enjoy all the amazing things to do close by:

  • "Cozy, Relaxing Stinson Beach Getaway" is a favorite option around 9 miles southwest of the center of San Rafael. There's no need to go far to find something to do around this property. Get outdoors and visit Bay Area Discovery Museum and Emeryville Crescent State Marine Reserve. Activities like fishing and mountain biking will add an adventurous touch to your weekend trip.
  • Alternatively, leave your troubles behind at "Pinecrest - High On Ridgeline With Sweeping Water And Mountain Views". Stay in and enjoy its comforts, or get active and try horse riding and mountain biking. When you're ready to discover more of the area, plan a visit to Walter S. Johnson Park and Upton Beach. This fantastic vacation rental is around 19 miles west of San Rafael.

Can I find studio apartments for rent in and around San Rafael?

Typically compact, easy on the hip pocket and conveniently located, it's not difficult to fall for the charms of a studio apartment. Make yourself comfortable in one of these vacation rentals and get to know San Rafael up close:

  • Make "Pinecrest - High On Ridgeline With Sweeping Water And Mountain Views" your home for a few days or more. This top property comes with amenities including an oven and a TV.
  • Alternatively, get away to "Mill Valley Escape - Minutes To Freeway", which comes with conveniences including an oven and coffee and tea making facilities.

When it's time to walk out of your studio apartment and do some exploring, there's lots to keep you busy around San Rafael. Into art and culture? Visit Mountain Play Theatre and Doodlebug.

Can I find short term rentals in or near San Rafael?

Every so often, you've just got to take a break from the real world, even if it's only for a couple of days. Enjoy the ideal combination of rest and recreation at one of these short-term rentals in or around San Rafael:

  • "Romantic, Dramatic Views" is near the center of San Rafael, which means there are plenty of things to keep you on the go. Find your way to well-known attractions like Samuel P. Taylor State Park and Nicasio Valley Cheese Company when you're not hanging out in your cozy rental.
  • Wake up, make a coffee and then start planning what to see around "Mill Valley Escape - Minutes To Freeway". Point Reyes Hiking Trails and Sculptured Beach should be on your radar if you choose to stay at this popular vacation rental.

What are the best romantic weekend getaways in or near San Rafael?

Nothing says "I love you" like a romantic weekend trip. If you're longing to spend a couple of evenings away with your significant other, we've got some romantic getaways in and around San Rafael that will set your heart aflutter:

  • Sneak away on Friday afternoon for a couple of passion-filled nights at "Yvetot. . . Secluded, Comfortable". Around 20 miles from San Rafael, it comes with lots of nice touches, including a nearby bay and winery tours.
  • "Lavender House Cottages, Classic Elegance In A Country Cottage" is another top option that's sure to impress. It's around 17 miles from San Rafael and has shopping facilities and a music library.

What are the best large group vacation rentals in or near San Rafael?

Big groups mean big fun. They also mean finding a place that'll easily fit your entire gang. Browse our large group vacation rentals in or around San Rafael and spend time with your favorite people under the one roof:

  • A host of amenities including mountain views and a fireplace make "Very Unique Private Home - Close To Beaches" a top pick. This expansive getaway has 6 bedrooms and sleeps up to 12 guests. From San Rafael's center, it's around 18 miles away to the west.
  • Invite up to 12 of your best friends to "Gorgeous Newer 5 Bedroom Home With Fabulous Beach" and fill its spaces with love and laughter. This popular option has 5 bedrooms and is around 30 miles to the northwest of San Rafael. It's packed with features to keep a large group comfortable, such as a fireplace and a kitchen.

What are the best houses for rent with a pool in or near San Rafael?

Of all the amenities a vacation rental can offer, a pool promises the most fun. Browse these houses for rent with a pool in or near San Rafael and spend your time splashing around. Just remember to bring your inflatable doughnut:

  • Round up your crew and enjoy a memorable stay at "Lavender House Cottages, Classic Elegance In A Country Cottage". There's a lot to love about this escape besides its pool, such as a barbecue grill and a stereo.
  • "Big Lovely House - Inverness Original" is the kind of place you go to get away from it all and enjoy your surroundings, starting with its glorious pool. A barbecue grill and a porch are also on hand to make your stay nice and comfortable.

Don't know how to pack for your San Rafael escape? This popular destination has a mediterranean climate. In the summertime, you can expect average temperatures of between 55 ºF and 70 ºF. Look up our range of San Rafael vacation rentals by using the search bar at the top of the page. Simply adjust the filters to get more inspiration on where to stay.

What are the best large family vacation rentals in or near San Rafael?

Every family catch-up should be a memorable one. Whether you're organizing some time away with the kids or a long-overdue family reunion, these large family vacation rentals in or near San Rafael offer a comfy home away from home with ample space for everyone:

  • Located around 9 miles to the southwest of San Rafael, "Cozy, Relaxing Stinson Beach Getaway" has 3 bedrooms and sleeps up to 8 guests. It comes with a host of amenities, including a TV and a video library.
  • "Very Unique Private Home - Close To Beaches" also has the space you need to reconnect with loved ones. This option is around 18 miles to the west of central San Rafael and accommodates as many as 12 guests in its 6 bedrooms. Coffee and tea making facilities and a video library will help keep everyone content and comfortable.

When you want to step outside your front door, there are lots of family-friendly attractions nearby to keep everyone happy. Bay Area Discovery Museum, Alamere Falls and McNears Beach Country Park should be top of your to-do list.

Can I find family cabin rentals in or near San Rafael?

Get away from it all and treat your loved ones to a different type of vacation. Stay in one of these family cabins in or near San Rafael and get the camping experience — but with all the creature comforts you're used to!

  • "Cabin - Sunny, Rustic Family Retreat" - Enjoy fun and good times with your gang at this getaway, which is around 20 miles northwest of central San Rafael. Childrens activities and free toiletries are among its family-friendly amenities.
  • "The Cabin Is Located A Short Walk To The Beach" - Another awesome choice, this cabin comes with towels, a barbecue grill and more. You'll find it around 30 miles to the northwest of San Rafael.

For more options, use the search bar at the top of the page and adjust the filters to find the San Rafael vacation rental that's perfect for your needs.

Are there one-bedroom vacation rentals in or near San Rafael?

Romantic getaways, work trips or adventures all on your own — a one-bedroom vacation rental is a perfect solution for all sorts of occasions. One of these options in or near San Rafael is sure to be just right:

  • It's true! Great things really do come in small packages, and "Beautiful, Secluded Bay View Cottage In The Trees" is a fantastic example of this. This one-bedroom vacation rental is just a short distance from the center and features amenities like a water view and a kitchen.
  • Or perhaps "Cozy One Bedroom Apartment In A Magical" is more your style. Another centrally located one-bedroom option, this place comes with a garden, a kitchen and more.