When you think of Malibu, you think of the coastal area made famous by mellow, surfable beaches, spacious seafood-and-cocktail emporiums and the estate of Barbra Streisand. But there’s a whole other Malibu up in the hills that’s wild, dramatic and full of untrodden nature. If you go way up the Pacific Coast Highway, far into Malibu, and then turn north and go up into the mighty Santa Monica Mountains, amongst the craggy peaks and plateaus, steep, dramatic canyons and general Wild West–meets–Alpine scenery, you’ll find a special, magical place called Charmlee Wilderness Park, where you can hike or walk 500-plus acres of wooded footpaths, wide-open fire trails, scrubby hill areas and wild grassy fields. The sensation at Charmlee is of being on a pristine, rolling country landscape raised high up above it all. Here one will find amazing huge trees, colorful wildflowers (in season), odd rock formations, amazing views back out over the Pacific and lots of wildlife. So watch out for rattlesnakes, mountain lions and ticks. 2577 S. Encinal Canyon Rd., Malibu. (310) 457-7247. —Adam Gropman

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