6 Of The Best Things To Do In San Francisco That Are Completely Free

These destinations in The Golden City won't break the bank.

Baker Beach in San Francisco, CA. Right: The 16th Avenue tiled steps in San Francisco, CA. ​
Georgia Contributing Writer

Baker Beach in San Francisco, CA. Right: The 16th Avenue tiled steps in San Francisco, CA.

While The Golden City is known for its beautiful sites and sounds, it is notoriously expensive for both visitors and locals alike.

Free things to do in San Francisco are hard to come by, but it's worth exploring the city without having to break the bank.

Here are the top six things you can do to spend some time in this iconic city that anyone can enjoy, regardless of your budget. The best part? They won’t cost you a dime.

Japanese Tea Garden

Price: Free (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Address: 75 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr., San Francisco, CA

Why You Need To Go: This oasis is always free to San Francisco residents, but if you're a visitor, you can stop by during the morning hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, or Fridays to take in the sites for free.

This gorgeous garden is a wonderful destination for an early morning stroll. San Francisco's Japanese Tea Garden is an ideal spot for walking down the stone paths or spotting the pagodas, koi ponds, and zen gardens.


Salesforce Park

Price: Free

Address: 425 Mission St., San Francisco, CA

Why You Need To Go: You can take a lift to a grassy park with 5.4 acres of open space for leisure. From here, you can enjoy the lush wildlife, walking trails, or public art installations, all free of charge.


Baker Beach

Price: Free

Address: 1770 Gibson Rd., San Francisco

Why You Need To Go: This free beach has one of the best coastal views in all San Francisco. You can enjoy a walk in the sand or a picnic with a pristine view of the Golden Gate Bridge.

If you're feeling adventurous, you can strip down and enjoy the nude beach portion of this picturesque shoreline. Either way, you're guaranteed unmatched views of the city free of charge.


16th Avenue Tiled Steps

Price: Free

Address: 16th Ave., San Francisco, CA

Why You Need To Go: This mosaic staircase features 163 steps leading to one of the best views in San Francisco.

The 16th Avenue Tiled Steps started as a community art project located in San Francisco's Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood to showcase the "sea-to-sky" themed mosaic art.

The stairs are surrounded by plants and succulents native to California and lead you to Grandview Park, where you can view the picturesque cityscapes below.


Pier 39

Price: Free to explore

Address: The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA

Why You Need To Go: This Bay Area attraction is a must for first-time visitors. You can explore the various shops, restaurants, and attractions at this iconic wharf in San Francisco.

One of the pier's most popular attractions is the various seals that leisure and sunbathe, unbothered by the presence of tourists from across the globe. Pier 39 is a great destination to experience some of the city's most famous sites.


Randall Museum

Price: Free

Address: 199 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA

Why You Need To Go: Located in Central San Francisco, Randall Museum offers displays of science, nature, and art. The entrance is always free to the general public.

If you're looking to experience the city's culture, Randall Museum is the perfect place to explore and expand your knowledge of this historic city.


Maeve Browne
Georgia Contributing Writer
Maeve Browne is a Contributing Writer for Narcity’s USA Desk focused on food and Internet trends and is based in Savannah, Georgia.