Where to Watch the Sunset in San Francisco | San Francisco Travel
The Ferry Building at Sunset from the bay.
San Francisco's Embarcadero is a jumping off point for all kinds of adventures.

Where to Watch
The Sunset in San Francisco

No matter the season, sunsets are spectacular in San Francisco. Here are the best places to see them.

There are so many unique, exciting, and thrilling things to experience in San Francisco—but sometimes, it's not so bad to slow down, relax, and get back to basics. Why not enjoy the natural beauty of a San Francisco sunset? Whether indoors or outdoors, on land or at sea, here are several ways we recommend to watch a gorgeous sunset in San Francisco.

Baker Beach

This popular beach in the Presidio offers the best ocean view of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Marin Headlands. We can't think of a better way to frame a beautiful sunset.

Bernal Heights Park

Head to Bernal Heights Park, adjacent to the Mission District at the southern end of the city. After a short hike to the park’s summit, you’ll be rewarded with a 360-degree vista—beautiful at any time of day but even lovelier under a cotton candy pink sky. On a clear evening, you can see all the way to the Golden Gate Bridge on one side and Bayview-Hunters Point on the other. There’s also a charming tree swing atop the hill, which you might recognize from its Instagram fame.

Cityscape Lounge

It’s all in the name. Located on the 46th floor of the Hilton at Union Square, this bar offers an incredible 360-degree view of San Francisco’s cityscape. This essentially guarantees you’ll have one of the best views in the city of the California sunset. And don’t worry if the fog starts to roll in because, at 46 floors up, the sights can be just as astonishing. Meanwhile, take advantage of the kitchen’s tapas and bartenders’ specialty drinks.

Grand View Park

Want the inside scoop on where the locals go to watch the sunset? They head to this secluded, romantic hilltop park in the aptly named Sunset neighborhood. You'll have peaceful, panoramic views to enjoy with your special someone.

Lands End & Sutro Bath Ruins

One of San Francisco’s most picturesque beaches, Lands End is tucked behind the dramatic cliffs west of Lincoln Park and accessible via a hiking trail. The trek along the bluffs is gorgeous but steep, so make sure to wear sturdy shoes. The sight of the crashing waves, cypress hillsides and the Golden Gate Bridge against an electric sunset backdrop is unforgettable. Within walking distance of Lands End are the Sutro Bath ruins, a large and impressive structure that consisted of six saltwater pools and one freshwater pool. It was slated to be demolished in favor of condos, but before that could happen, the baths were destroyed by a fire. Today, the ruins are a testament to the vision of one San Franciscan and how he saw the city.

Ocean Beach

Just south of Lands End is Ocean Beach, a classic California beach that stretches along the west side of the city. Its dreamy seaside views make it the ideal place to relax and watch the sun dip in into the Pacific, but don’t forget to glance back east and catch the city in its golden-hour glory, too. It’s chilly at Ocean Beach most of the year, but that’s what bonfires are for.

Cruise the San Francisco Bay

There's no reason not to take advantage of Red and White Fleet's Sunset Cruise, a romantic cruise on the bay that features live music and complimentary appetizers and drinks. It's the perfect opportunity to sail past San Francisco landmarks like AlcatrazAngel Island and the Golden Gate Bridge. As expected, these sunset cruises are very popular and require reservations, so book the Sunset Cruise today.

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Twin Peaks

Located in the geographical center of San Francisco, Twin Peaks towers over the city at an elevation of about 925 feet. The panorama from the top of each peak, which spans from Ocean Beach and the Golden Gate Bridge to the Mission District and Potrero Hill, will leave you breathless. Twin Peaks should be firmly planted on any visitor’s AND local’s sunset-chasing list.

Treasure Island

An artificial island built for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition, Treasure Island offers some of the most spectacular views of the Bay Bridge and the skyline. Come sunset (or sunrise, for that matter), you’re certain to see camera tripods dotting the island’s edge in anticipation of snagging the perfect shot. The entire northern waterfront from bridge to bridge is on display from Treasure Island’s Avenue of the Palms.

Restaurants with a View

Sometimes the perfect complement to a stunning sunset is a glass of wine in hand and a delicious meal within reach. 

City Experiences & Event’s yachts (Pier 3, The Embarcadero) are floating restaurants where you can watch the sunset from a whole new perspective. City Experiences offers everything from dinner-dance cruises to private custom charters on the San Francisco Bay.

Top of the Mark (999 California St.), a popular destination since its opening in 1939, is a unique lounge with priceless views that has continued to captivate visitors from all over the world. The glass-walled cocktail lounge offers amazing wraparound views from one on the highest points in the city.

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The Golden Gate Bridge at sunset with a multicolored sky and the San Francisco Bay in the foreground.
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