10 Top Tourist Attractions in San Francisco

Martina Rosado
Written by
Last update:

Palace of Fine Arts

This huge building sits on a small, rectangular parcel of land right in the center of San Francisco. It served as a backdrop for the love story between Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip in the movie, The Princess Diaries.

This World War I tribute to the United States has an impressive exhibition of classical sculpture, paintings, and a remarkable collection of Greek and Roman marbles.

Greece is well known for its classical style, as is exemplified by the sculptures in the Palace of Fine Arts. The sculptures were made from marble during Greece's Golden Age, between 350 BC and 450 BC. The sculptures in the Palace of Fine Arts include a reproduction of the Dying Gaul, a standing Hermes, and a 1,200-year-old temple wall that was excavated in Herculaneum in the 19th century.

The tallest sculpture in the room is a thirty-three-foot tall replica of the Winged Victory, which is the centerpiece of the Roman-Germanic Museum in the Louvre Museum in Paris.

Fisherman's Wharf

Although this area of San Fransisco is often thought of as an attraction simply for the whimsy walks and rides, it is also a fantastic area to explore with its many shops, restaurants, and attractions.

San Francisco's Chinatown

This must be something in the water because San Francisco has the good fortune of having a ton of great restaurants. One of them is called Sakaya Kitchen.

It is a combination of both Japanese and Chinese food. The owner of this restaurant is an outstanding chef, and is from Japan and trained in Chinese traditional family restaurant.

This is a very important combination and the food served by the owner is different and unique. The restaurant is special combination of Chinese ingredients and spices and Japanese style of cooking.

The food is very tasty and was chosen as one of the top 30 restaurants in the United States in 2012. It is one of the small restaurants in San Francisco. The interior and the colors are casual and the restaurant has a lot of windows, so there is plenty of natural light.

It's a great restaurant to go to for lunch, dinner or as a special treat after a long tour around the city.

Alamo Square

Transamerica Pyramid

The Transamerica Pyramid is one of the biggest attractions in San Francisco. Its 8 levels of retail shops set a standard that most other shopping centers try to emulate for the best and diverse shops in the city. The three-story lobby on the lower level is truly uplifting and beautiful.

In the lobby are marble floors, beautiful flowers in scenes of tranquility and wind chimes that compete with the singing of the stream that runs through the building. There are even diagrams that are trippy to the point of speechlessness at what it takes to make each floor of the pyramid.

The building is one of the main structures at the San Francisco Civic Center. It was completed in 1972 and has become a dominant symbol of the downtown area.

The towers that stand up in the building are actually antennae. At the top of the building is a revolving restaurant called “The Dreamtel.”

Top View of Transamerica Pyramid and the City

Lead image courtesy of Flickr.

Lombard Street

Golden Gate Park

Golden Gate Park sits just north of the famous Lombard Street in San Francisco, California. Like many of San Francisco’s famous attractions, it’s hard to take it all in at once, so be sure to take note of all of the jewels that will catch your eye, and consider how you'll return to them later. Amongst the things of interest include the famous Shakespeare Garden, the newly remodeled Conservatory of Flowers, and the Japanese Tea Garden.

The gardens in Portland are a great place to take a break and have a picnic lunch. Spend the afternoon strolling around the gardens, and head out to "The Parade of Nations" to watch the visitors from around the world. The gardens are seasonal, so go in the spring, summer, or fall.

Golden Gate Park has been a part of San Francisco since Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, a soldier for French explorer Renèe Robert Cavelier, sieur de La Salle, purchased the land in the 18th century. A hospital once stood at the site, and in 1776, the land was transferred to the San Francisco Presidio, the first military post on the west coast.

Cable Cars


Alcatraz Island is a small tidal island located in the middle of San Francisco Bay. The former site of the federal penitentiary Alcatraz has become a major tourist attraction.

Constructed in Angel Island, south of the main island, in 1934, it was opened in the year 1936 as a prison for inmates. The island was abandoned as a military prison, and used as a military fort. In 1969, the Alcatraz was opened as a museum for public.

The island is open to public tour, and has become a major tourist attraction. It is now being used as a museum where the prisoners used to live, including the Alcatraz lighthouse.

There are a few restaurants and shops in the island, and the top of the cell house is accessible through a quarter-mile trail.

You can also visit the building where the prisoners worked, including an excellent gift shop selling lots of souvenirs. There is also an attractive cafeteria in the island where you can enjoy even if you do not want to join them.

Besides, there are lots of tours for visiting the Alcatraz Island.

Fisherman's Wharf

Right near the wharf, there are several MUNI stops that get you right in the heart of the mission, Fillmore, and Japantown. However, the best attraction is the wharf itself. During the summer months it draws in tourists from every background.

This is where the locals go for the day. You will be blown away by the number of people from every walk of life. From head to toe, San Franciscans are everyone's image of what a local should be and San Francisco aspires to be a kind of world pole of authenticity.

For this reason, the waterfront is one of the best places for local people who might not otherwise interact with the tourists to come out and feed the ducks, pet the black market dogs, and enjoy the day.

For the tourists, it’s one of the best places to catch a glimpse of the reality of the local town. From the "Real San Franciscans" to the San Franciscans eating barbecue right off the grills, from the Asian nationals to the hippies and outcasts, San Francisco is the national living museum for tourists and one of the best cities in the world for street photography, as its people are willing participants for your photo shoot.

Golden Gate Bridge

ŸSanta Rosa Avenue, CA 94010.

Website: Golden Gate Bridge Website

The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge that is located between San Francisco and Marin County. It is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and links San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean. The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most iconic landmarks in California and is a popular tourist attraction.

The Golden Gate Bridge was built in the 1930's as part of a project to create a highway that went from the San Francisco Bay Area to the Pacific. Massive numbers of people participated in the work to finish the bridge by 1932. Up to 85,000 cars cross the bridge every day.

To celebrate the completion of the Golden Gate Bridge, thousands of people attend a ceremony that takes place on the first Sunday in May. Even if you don't want to go to the ceremony, you can enjoy watching it on live television and taking pictures from the north side of the bridge bridge.

The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge that is located between San Francisco and Marin County. It is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and links San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean. The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most iconic landmarks in California and is a popular tourist attraction.