5 lesser-known, must-see San Francisco attractions

Estimated reading time: 1 minute

Discovering a different side of Fog City

It’s no coincidence that everyone flocks to Fisherman’s Wharf for the clam chowder, Union Square for the shops, and the Golden Gate Bridge for the views. Several of San Francisco’s most touristy attractions are arguably some of the best spots in town.

However, these famous landmarks just skim the surface when it comes to getting to know Fog City. When you’re looking to delve a little deeper into this city’s charm, check out some of these hidden treasures tucked away in unexpected neighborhoods and scattered along the coast.

Walt Disney Family Museum

Get to know the man beyond the famous mouse and the Happiest Place on Earth. The Walt Disney Family Museum, located in San Francisco’s Presidio, showcases the life of Walt Disney, revealing his extensive imagination, unrivaled achievements, and masterful creations that pioneered the way for the world of animation. Take a peek at some of his earliest sketches, catch a classic Disney flick in the Fantasia-themed theater, and stand in awe of the 13-foot replica of Disneyland.

Seward Street Slides

Viewfinder Tip: Hop on Muni or BART to easily travel around the city.

Hidden in Noe Valley, a set of concrete slides invite you to unleash your inner child. The Seward Street Slides were designed by a 14-year-old student who won the “Design the Park” art contest in the 1960s. Grab a piece of cardboard and charge down the slides—just don’t wear your good pants! They might get scuffed up on the way down.

Lands End Labyrinth

Lands End Labyrinth

Lands End is must-visit attraction in and of itself, but the Labyrinth ups its appeal. Head east on the Coastal Trail and take the pathway to Mile Rock Beach to arrive at this intricate maze made of stones. Intended as a place for meditation, the peaceful installation overlooks the Marin Headlands and the Golden Gate Bridge.

Mile Rock Beach

From Lands End Labyrinth, continue the trek down to Mile Rock Beach. A steep staircase leads the way to this rocky cove with fierce and frigid waters. While it’s not exactly suitable for a game of Frisbee or a dip in the Pacific Ocean, the washed-up logs offer perfect makeshift tables for a picnic.

Wave Organ

Wave Organ

Listen to symphonic sounds of the Pacific Ocean at the Wave Organ in the Boat Harbor. Constructed by the Exploratorium, this concrete acoustic sculpture produces different sounds when the waves crash against its 25 organ pipes. The structure features listening stations, where you can hear the waves hiss and gurgle as they hit and travel through the pipes.

While the tourist favorites are definitely still some of the best things to do in San Francisco, don’t underestimate these lesser-known hot spots. Sometimes, it’s the unspoken attractions just outside your San Francisco hotel that are the most intriguing and captivating of all.

What are your favorite underappreciated spots in San Francisco?

Expedia compensates authors for their writings appearing on this site, such compensation may include travel and other costs.

Chloe Mulliner

As a staff writer for Expedia, Chloe Mulliner is dedicated to providing top travel tips for your jaunts around the world. She believes there are adventures to be had on every inch of the globe from surf spots on the Peruvian coast to the charming villages of the English countryside. Chloe specializes in showcasing all the must-see attractions on your travel wish list. She lives by the belief that every adventure is a story worth sharing.

Latest posts by Chloe Mulliner (see all)

RECOMMENDED

Hotel Deals for San Francisco
Calista Organic Hotel
CA, USA
Jul 19 - Jul 19, 2018
per night from
$ 3609.99
$ 1119.09

TRENDING

RECENT SOCIAL