Best Parks in San Francisco - Alite Designs

Best Parks in San Francisco

Best Parks in San Francisco

Green space here in sunny San Francisco should be taken advantage of, no matter the time of year. Park-time is all the time; therefore, it is always the right time to check out a park you've never been too. It is our hope, here at Alite, that you learn about an area you've never been to, and save the directions to get there! Don't get us wrong, we love Dolores too, but there are SO MANY other parks where you can causally sip that tall can. Bocce, brews, baguettes, and bird calls, we sure as hell are not in a concrete jungle here in SF! So PLEASE, let us direct you towards some of our favorite parks to enjoy a variety of activities…

 

Golden Gate Park

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Park Website: Golden Gate Park

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Notoriously known and widely appreciated - Golden Gate Park has something for everyone and then some! 20% larger than NYC's Central Park, you'd expect it to have fly fishing ponds, roaming bison, and numerous BBQ and bocce ball areas … oh wait, it does! You could spend days exploring the many features of GG Park and they would all be days well spent.

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Presidio

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Park Website: Presidio

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This section of San Francisco is classified under the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. It has an extensive history and engaging community involvement. The area has been protected and preserved, and is now under the management of the Presidio Trust, which oversees the maintenance of its historical structures. Green grass, outdoor art installations, and awesome bike trails can be found here, not to mention an epic view of the Golden Gate Bridge (ever heard of it?).

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Dolores Park

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Park Website: Dolores Park

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This park has something for everyone. It ranges from being a dog park to a day-bar to a devil-stick-flame-throwing competition ring. Its location, in the heart of the Mission, makes it a focal point for locals and tourists alike. The weather in Dolores Park is always a bit warmer, and the wind is never as harsh as from where you just came. This microclimate is a perfect people-watching area, and you're bound to make a friend or two, sometimes not by choice.

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  • Shaved ice from Namu
  • Bi-Rite Soft Serve (FYI: you don't have to wait in the long-ass line if you just want soft serve!)
  • Carrot Cake from Tartine

 

Glen Canyon Park

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Park Website: Glen Canyon Park

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This park is under the radar, and many people, even here at the Alite office, haven't checked it out yet! Its 70 acre location, along a canyon, makes it interesting for humans and numerous animals! Various ecosystems come into play, from coastal scrub to riparian, and it makes a great breeding ground for hawks and owls! While the animals are 'playing', you can too - there are tennis courts and biking trails to keep you in check. It is close to the neighborhoods of Diamond Heights and Shaughnessy, and there is ample parking (enough said …).

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Panhandle

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Park Website: Golden Gate Park (Pandhandle)

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Take the time to stop and chill for a bit in this three fourths of a mile stretch before hitting Golden Gate Park. There are two paved paths, one for foot traffic and the other for bicyclists, that both wind through to GG Park. Don't be surprised to find some friendly folks who are willing to play chess, basketball or bocce ball. This narrow strip is known for the William McKinley Monument at the beginning of the stretch, a steady flow of bicycle commuters and the aggressive scent of eucalyptus.

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  • Basketball courts
  • Skateboarding at the DMV
  • FlyWheel Coffee Roasters are a block away from the Panhandle at 672 Stanyan! These guys have great java and fresh juice!

 

Grand View Park

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Park Website: Grand View Park

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Grand View Park, aka Turtle Hill, is in the Sunset District and holds some stellar views not to be missed. You can see downtown SF, as well as, the Marin Headlands, Coit Tower and the Pacific Ocean. Although it may be a tiny park, it should not be overlooked. If you can break your gaze form the views, you will find some neat native plants to check out. Also, Grand View Park is a hop, skip and jump away from some tasty places to eat in the Outer Sunset!

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  • The walk up via the Mosaic Stairway
  • Try and locate an endangered dune tansy or a franciscan wildflower

 

South Park

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Park Website: South Park

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Check out this hidden sunny spot down in the SOMA district of San Francisco! Perfect for your lunch break or happy hour. 

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Washington Square

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Park Website: Washington Square Park

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In the lovely neighborhood of North Beach lies an epic park for all types of gathers. We like badminton, do you? It's perfect for picnics, people watching and sipping cappuccinos bought at a bordering cafe. It was established in 1847, that's NUTS right?! Dogs are allowed (on-leash), and it's always prime time for observing some Tai Chi experts!

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Alamo Square

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Park Website: Alamo Square Park

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Yes, the opening credits of the television series Full House were shot in this park with the famous Victorian houses, Painted Ladies, featured. That's a cool tidbit, but how about the fact that it has some bangin' city views (especially of the Pyramid Building), serious tennis courts, and awesome picnic table setups for BBQ's and brown-bagged tall cans! It is in the neighborhood known as Western Addition. If you have a dog, you've most likely been here, because it is a perfect space for letting your pup off leash and making some new friends.

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Twin Peaks

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Park Website: Twin Peaks Park

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The second highest point in San Francisco (after Mt. Davidson), Twin peaks gets a wee bit windy, but the view is worth it! It was first named "Los Pechos de la Choca" which translates to "Breasts of the Maiden", and now it's commonly known as Twin Peaks … get it? The 180 degree view of the city is unreal, especially at sunset!

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