The Golden Gate National Recreation Area is one of the world’s largest urban parks. Surrounding much of the San Francisco Bay area, it covers nearly 75,000 acres to be more exact. Also worth highlighting right from the start is the park’s popularity. More than thirteen million people visit the Golden Gate National Recreation Area on an average annual basis. This makes it one of the most highly visited units of the National Park System. Part of the reason why the park’s visitor numbers are so high is the fact that it is home to the famous island of Alcatraz.
Various sections of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area are found in San Mateo County, Marin County, and San Francisco County. One of the San Francisco County areas is the park that is known as the Presidio. While spending time in this large park, it is possible to enjoy excellent Golden Gate Bridge views, as well as views of the San Francisco Bay. Presidio visitors can also check out the historic fortification that is Fort Point and see what’s on display at the Walt Disney Family Museum, among other things.
Many different experiences can be enjoyed on a visit to California’s Golden Gate Bridge National Recreation Area. These experiences include spending time at China Beach, exploring the wonderful realms of Golden Gate Bridge Park (aka Golden Gate Park), strolling or biking along the three-and-a-half-mile Golden Gate Promenade, and taking in the scenic views of Pyramid Rock from Land’s End. This is just the start, however. Sweeney Ridge in San Mateo County is another great place to savor scenic views, for example, and southwestern Marin County offers up the Muir Woods National Monument. This monument’s main calling card is its old growth Coast Redwood forest.
The Golden Gate National Recreation Area offers something for everyone and is certainly not to be overlooked when trying to find fun things to do in San Francisco. As for getting there or getting around, one option is to rely on San Francisco’s Muni bus system. It offers access to more popular sites, such as Ocean Beach and the Cliff House restaurant. Also worth mentioning is the fact that several camping sites are found within the boundaries of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. One example is the Kirby Cove Camp campground in the Marin Headlands area.