Five Things Not to Miss in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park
Ah…Golden Gate Park! Larger than New York’s Central Park. More stuff to do than Perth’s Kings Park.
Our guests on one- or two-day tours of San Francisco with just a few hours to spend in this awesome place often wonder what to do in Golden Gate Park.
Here’s what our local insiders recommend to get the most from your visit to one of San Francisco’s best attractions—all on one handy-dandy map.
1 – Go totally Zen at the Japanese Tea Garden. These 5 acres of mysterious (entrance has no nails) and historic (where fortune cookies were invented) garden are one of the miniature wonders of the world! Wander stone foot paths. See the Buddha. Try the matcha green tea at the Tea House!
Photo Credit: www.intothebluemagazine.com
2 – Hold hands at Stow Lake. Just a 10-minute walk from the Music Concourse is picture-perfect Stow Lake. Spot herons, woodpeckers, geese, ducks and hummingbirds from the lake-side benches. Have a 20th century moment as you paddle a boat from the Stow Lake Boathouse to Strawberry Hill.
Photo Credit: www.stowlakeboathouse.com
3 – Get a bird’s eye-view at the de Young Museum Observation Tower. If you’re short on time, climb the stairs of the Observation Tower. Its free and offers incredible views of the City. Scavenger hunt time—find the safety pin in the Osher Sculpture Garden. When you come back down to earth, look for Drawn Stone (its art!).
Photo Credit: www.sfgate.com
4 – Stop and smell the roses (or whatever) at San Francisco Botanical Garden. In an hour, see 100s of varieties of plants from around the world. Make sure you find the Coast Redwoods, one of the most remarkable (and largest) species on Earth. See something you like? The open-air Arbor has plants for sale every day!
Photo Credit: www.blog.sfgate.com
5 – Make up a rhyme in the Shakespeare Garden. This unique spot contains plants and flowers from the Bard’s comedies, tragedies, and sonnets! “Where for art thou, Mandragora?” Fun fact: the statue of Shakespeare was donated by the mayor of Stratford-Upon-Avon. Only a 7-minute walk from the de Young, so you’ll have time to stop at the food trucks next to the Music Concourse on the way back!
Photo Credit: www.intimateweddings.com
Tip: Parking can be a real challenge, particularly on the weekends. Take public transportation or a tour bus and skip right to having fun!