5 Top Things to Do at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco

Fisherman’s Wharf is hands down the most popular tourist spot in San Francisco, and for a good reason too. 

Located on the northern waterfront of San Francisco Bay, the area called Fisherman’s Wharf, starting from Ghirardelli Square and up to Pier 35 to the east offers a vast range of exciting attractions to its visitors!  

Great food, unique – and a little bit weird-  museums and a festive atmosphere are just few of the things awaiting you in Fisherman’s Wharf!  

Interested to find out more about this touristy and exciting place? Start with 5 activities that capture the heart of tourists and locals alike at Fisherman’s Wharf! 

  1. Rides with Cable CarsCable cars in San Francisco have become the city’s emblems by now, just like other legendary monuments, like the Golden Bridge. Rides in cable cars is a must if you visit San Francisco for the first time. Also, having two lines of cable cars serving the Fisherman’s Wharf area is pretty convenient, because finding free parking space there is as probable as a jackpot hit. Starting from the Union Square, you can either take the Powell-Hyde line and get off on Hyde and Beach streets, to reach Ghirardelli Square or the Powell-Mason line can drop you in the middle of the Wharf area. 

    fishermans wharf cable cars

    Extra tip: If you are planning to move around with public transportation rather than your car, opt for a day pass ticket, since it is a far more inexpensive option than buying single tickets every so often.

  2. Watch the Sea Lions Hanging Around Pier 39. Head to the last pier in the Wharf area to watch the goofy sea lions lying on the docks and playing with each other! Though it might sound simple, you will be amazed by how entertaining this spectacle can be, especially for little children. While it is logical to expect tourists who never saw wild sea lions so close up to stand mesmerized in view of the sea lions’ lounging, strangely enough, the same happens with the locals too! And, in case you want to learn more about these adorable mammalians, head to the Sea Lion Center, open daily from 10 am to 5 pm, and enjoy educational videos and presentations about the life of sea lions in the pier, the place that they call home from January of 1990.  
  3. Visit San Francisco’s Maritime National Park. A visit to Maritime National Park in Fisherman’s Wharf is always an exciting one. This exceptional museum divides into two parts; the first is a small space near Ghirardelli Square where you can find interest maritime exhibits and a same-themed photography exhibition. The entrance in this part is free. The second part is a short walk away and includes an onboard tour of 4 old boats, which has a reasonable fee entrance of about $10. If you have kids or a thing for history, this is a must stop for you in Fisherman’s Wharf. 

    fishermans wharf sing

    Extra tip: The whole facility is very clean, and it is a good idea to use the restroom there instead of other places packed with people in the Wharf. 

  4. Blow your Palate Away with the Seafood

    The original story of the Fisherman’s Wharf evolves around food – seafood. Back in the day, it was the dock where fishermen brought the catch of the day to sell it on the waterfront, hence the name “Fisherman’s Wharf.”  The area quickly became a synonym to fresh seafood, straight from the bay, and the case is no different nowadays. Though you can find places where the food is not so good, as it happens with most tourist-magnet places, there are some restaurants appraised for their excellent food. Some of the very best local’s choices include Cioppino’s at 400 Jefferson Street and the much fancier Scomas at Pier 47. 

  5. Join a Segway Tour! By taking a Segway tour at the Fisherman’s Wharf, you can see all the attractions of the Wharf, including the famous Aquatic Park, the scenic fishing harbors and breathtaking views of Alcatraz in just one day without getting tired! Sounds exciting? Then don’t delay and book today

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