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Golden Gate Park

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

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Golden Gate Park

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  • Golden Gate Park runs 4 miles east to west, from near City Center to the Pacific Ocean.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park's Panhandle is popular with runners and walkers.- Golden Gate Park
  • One of the park's pedestrian tunnels. - Golden Gate Park
  • Entertainment near Koret Children's Playground.- Golden Gate Park
  • Koret Children's Playground.- Golden Gate Park
  • Koret Children's Playground.- Golden Gate Park
  • Carousel adjacent to Koret Playground.- Golden Gate Park
  • Hippy Hill has a rich San Francisco history.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park's tennis complex.- Golden Gate Park
  • The park is well known for the Conservatory of Flowers building.- Golden Gate Park
  • Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • - Golden Gate Park
  • Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Japanese Tea Garden.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park's Music Concourse lies between the de Young Museum and the California Academy of Sciences.- Golden Gate Park
  • - Golden Gate Park
  • Academy of Sciences building in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • View form the top of the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Looking south over the Academy of Sciences toward Mount Sutro and Sutro Tower.- Golden Gate Park
  • Solar panels and a green roof adorn the Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • The de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Red-tailed hawks in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park Botanical Gardens.- Golden Gate Park
  • Botanical Gardens.- Golden Gate Park
  • Botanical Gardens in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Stowe Lake in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Huntington Falls at Stowe Lake. - Golden Gate Park
  • The Chinese Pavilion at Stowe Lake in Golden Gate Park.- Golden Gate Park
  • Paddleboats are a popular attraction at Stowe Lake.- Golden Gate Park
  • Buffalo in the Bison Paddock.- Golden Gate Park
  • - Golden Gate Park
  • Flycasting pools at the Angler's Lodge.- Golden Gate Park
  • Flycasting pools at the Angler's Lodge.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park's Dutch Windmills rise above the park's western border overlooking Ocean Beach.- Golden Gate Park
  • Golden Gate Park is backed by its namesake iconic bridge.- Golden Gate Park
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
World-class urban park. Diversity of sight and activities.
Cons: 
None.
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Region:
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, CA
Congestion: 
High
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

Set against a stunning San Francisco skyline with the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge rising in the background, this world-class 4-mile urban park is situated between City Center and the Pacific Ocean and boasts a plethora of unique attractions. Each visit to Golden Gate Park seems to uncover something new. This natural refuge within the West Coast's most densely-packed city is full of wonders and attractions for first time visitors and locals alike.

Children can be found climbing on the extensive play structure at the Koret Children’s Playground or queuing for a ride on the carousel. Families and individuals seeking an educational experience are drawn to the de Young Museum and the green-roof-adorned California Academy of Sciences.

The park’s numerous paths and pedestrian tunnels offer walkers, runners, and bikers a diverse landscape to enjoy while they exercise. Golden Gate Park's diversity is one of it's most intriguing features: a dense mixture of verdant temperate and subtropical vegetation fills every nook and cranny. Buffalo can be seen grazing in the Bison Paddock, and birds of all colors and sorts fly overhead.  Plant enthusiasts will enjoy the Botanical Gardens, Japanese Tea Garden, and Conservatory of Flowers, all of which contain beautiful vegetation.

The west end of the park, the transition zone to Ocean Beach, is home to the North and South Windmills and the Park Chalet restaurant, which date back to the early 20th century. In their heyday, the windmills pumped up to 1.5 million gallons of water each day. They have since fallen into disrepair, but the North Windmill is surrounded by a beautiful tulip garden, while the South Windmill still boasts the world’s longest sails.

Golden Gate Park is home to four bodies of water. Stowe Lake is a popular destination; on warm days paddleboats crisscross the lake, passing by the beautiful Chinese Pavilion and Huntington Falls.  Flycasting pools border the soccer and polo fields, and Spreckles Lake sits between the model yacht club and the disc golf course.

Hippie Hill is a large, gently slanted field whose name is a throwback to its popularity in the 1960s; musicians such as the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin played here. It is an ideal place to watch the sun set and get in some people watching at the end of a long day exploring the park.   

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(12 within a 30 mile radius)

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