Yerba Buena Gardens

The Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco is a public facility that features much more than just flowers and plants. This facility, which covers two city blocks, also features a collection of buildings ranging from theaters to museums, and there's even a bowling center and an ice rink here. There are lots of fun things to do at Yerba Buena Gardens, and visitors can easily spend a few hours at the facility. The Sony Metreon building alone offers a number of cool attractions that can fill a visit. There's also the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival for those who are interested in a fun events.

The Sony Metreon, which covers an impressive 350,000 acres, is a state-of-the entertainment center that comes complete with some of the Bay Area's best restaurants and shops. Movie theaters also figure among the things that can be enjoyed at the Sony Metreon, and the IMAX Theater is the West Coast's largest. Some of the other buildings that can be found at the Yerba Buena Gardens include the Moscone Convention Center, which is the city's premier exhibition and meeting facility, and the Zeum, which is a fascinating museum that focuses on technology and art.

The Yerba Buena Gardens is complete, and it also features a Center for the Arts. This center hosts some of the live music, dance, and theater events at Yerba Buena Gardens, and it also features an avant-garde art gallery. Not all of the special events take place at the Center for the Arts, however. Many are held outside, with May to October being the prime season for catching outdoor events at Yerba Buena Gardens. More than 200 free events are offered at the facility on an annual basis, and checking the events schedule is recommended when planning a San Francisco vacation.

The Yerba Buena Gardens Festival isn't a singular event. Instead, it refers to the facility's extended May to October festival season. The events that are part of the festival range from puppet shows to jazz concerts, and the art displays are usually very interesting. The fact that all of the events that are part of the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival are free only helps to make them popular among visitors and locals alike. Also free are the facility's gardens, which are a joy to explore.

For those who aren't planning on enjoying one of the many fun events at Yerba Buena Gardens, exploring the gardens themselves is often the main draw. The gardens at this facility cover more than five acres, and they include the Sister City Gardens, the East Garden, and the Butterfly Gardens, among others. The Sister City Gardens highlight flowers from San Francisco's sister cities, which include Paris, Manila, and Caracas, to name a few. At the East Garden, Western styles are blended with Eastern styles, while the Butterfly Garden is a haven for a number of native butterfly species.

There is a lot to take in on a visit to the Yerba Buena Gardens, and visitors won't want to miss the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. This amazing, mixed-media memorial features a 50-foot-tall waterfall, which cascades down the piece's granite fixtures. Behind the waterfall is a series of panels that display things like famous quotes and photos of the Civil Rights Movement. As for the other facilities that can be found at the Yerba Buena Gardens, they include a historic Carousel, a wide open esplanade with plenty of grass, a collection of small cafes, and a modest Ohlone Indian Memorial.

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