San Francisco Viewing points

Our most recommended San Francisco Viewing points

From San Francisco: Yosemite National Park Full-Day Trip

1. From San Francisco: Yosemite National Park Full-Day Trip

Spend an active, fun-filled day learning why Yosemite is one of America’s most popular national parks. Hike through the park with an experienced guide and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature on this tour. Start off by making your way east from San Francisco and heading across the Bay Bridge. Continue toward the Sierras and into the mountains. Learn about California’s rich history as you pass through some of the first settlements built during the Gold Rush. Arrive in Yosemite National Park for a 2.5-mile round-trip hike to see the Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias. Be prepared for a strenuous hike, descending 400 feet into the grove, before turning around and trekking back up. Next, cruise into the famous Yosemite Valley to take in views of Bridalveil Falls, El Capitan, Half Dome, and more. Capture breathtaking photos at Tunnel View and take in the eastern expanse of Yosemite Valley. Then, enjoy 1.5 hours of free time to explore on your own. You can meander down paved paths, hike around Yosemite Falls, engage further with the park’s history at the visitor’s center, or visit the Ansel Adams Gallery. In the late afternoon, you’ll depart for San Francisco, stopping for a short break before arriving back in the city. Arrive back at your hotel in the late evening to sleep off the day’s adventures.

San Francisco: Yosemite National Park & Giant Sequoias Hike

2. San Francisco: Yosemite National Park & Giant Sequoias Hike

Experience both the Yosemite Valley and the Giant Sequoia Walk on this day tour. See why artists and poets have been inspired for generations by the breathtaking sceneries at the national park. Since 1890, the beautiful Yosemite National Park has been the jewel of America's National Parks, possessing some of the best-known landmarks in the world, such as the tallest waterfall in North America, Yosemite Falls. Have 5 to 6 hours to explore the stunning national park, and take in the majestic natural wonders, accompanied by a complimentary audio-guided tour. See the spectacular Half Dome and El Capitan, two of the most frequently climbed cliffs in the world. It is also home to several groves of stunning Giant Sequoia trees, the largest trees on earth. The Giant Sequoia Walk is along 1 mile (1.5 km) of paved trail with a 400 ft (120 m) incline, snow depth permitting. On a group tour, view stunning panoramas, go on walks, and even hike a little, before returning to San Francisco. Or if you prefer, upgrade to a private tour for your group only.

San Francisco: Sky Star Wheel Experience

3. San Francisco: Sky Star Wheel Experience

Installed in 2020 as part of Golden Gate Park’s 150th anniversary celebration, SkyStar is an experience not to be missed. Standing 150 feet tall in Golden Gate Park's Music Concourse, SkyStar Wheel boasts sprawling views from downtown San Francisco to the Pacific Ocean. The SkyStar Observation Wheel offers 36 gondolas that can host up to 6 guests per gondola. And if you feel you want to elevate your date night, or a night out with friends, enjoy the VIP experience option! Skip the line when you take an extended flight of 20 minutes in the VIP gondola with leather seats and hardwood floors. A VIP flight fits up to 5 people and it is the ultimate private experience. The SkyStar Observation Wheel was previously installed in Louisville, Kentucky; Norfolk, Virginia; and Cincinnati, Ohio. This is the first time an observation wheel of this scale has operated in San Francisco since Golden Gate Park hosted the Midwinter International Exposition of 1894, where the first Wheel stood at 120 feet tall.

San Francisco: 2-Day Yosemite Tour

4. San Francisco: 2-Day Yosemite Tour

Embark on a custom 2-day tour to the amazing natural surroundings of Yosemite National Park. Enjoy towering granite cliffs, diverse wildlife, and other spectacular sights. Get picked up from your hotel in San Francisco and cross through California’s fertile San Joaquin Valley into the rocky Sierra Nevada mountains. See 170-year-old mining towns and learn the colorful history of the region. Experience the solitude of the Tuolumne Grove of giant sequoias as you enter Yosemite. You won’t doubt for a second that these are the largest living creatures on the planet. Discover the breathtaking Yosemite Valley and enjoy a stop at Inspiration Point. Take some selfies with El Capitan, the Half Dome, and Bridal Veil Falls. Afterwards, check into your accommodations (not included) to rest up before enjoying one or more days of unguided time in the park. Choose from a huge range of activities including hiking, biking, rock climbing, and rafting.

From San Francisco: Yosemite Private Full-Day Trip

5. From San Francisco: Yosemite Private Full-Day Trip

Explore the Yosemite Valley and Yosemite National Park at your own pace, and avoid the hassle of organized bus tours. Traveling by private car, enjoy the comfort of seeing the places you want to see without worrying about your arrival time. Learn more about the famous landmarks with a reliable service, offering maximum security and, most of all, the best level of hospitality in the industry. Following a pick-up from your accommodation in San Francisco (pick-ups in other cities in the Bay Area are available on arrangement), get recommendations on the best places to stop to take pictures or explore further; you decide where you want to go. Take a scenic drive to Yosemite National Park in the Yosemite Valley. Marvel at tracts of forest as you drive to mighty Yosemite Falls. Go to Glacier Point for a commanding view of the Half Dome, Yosemite Valley and Yosemite Falls. Visit the almost vertical rock formation of El Capitán, and get really close to the ancient sequoias in their staggering groves. Transfer back to San Francisco in time to see the Bay Bridge Lights, a site-specific monumental light sculpture and art installation.

San Francisco: Golden Gate Bike Tour and Alcatraz Ticket

6. San Francisco: Golden Gate Bike Tour and Alcatraz Ticket

Explore San Francisco by bike and visit Alcatraz with this ticket for two tours over the course of two days. Take the ferry to Alcatraz Prison and uncover the prison's secrets on an audio tour. Enjoy a cycling tour to locations like Fisherman’s Wharf and the Golden Gate Bridge. Cross San Francisco Bay on a journey to the notorious Alcatraz Prison by ferry. This world-famous prison served as a federal penitentiary from 1934 to 1963 and housed infamous criminals like Al Capone and Robert Stroud, the Birdman. Take the award-winning 45-minute Cellhouse audio tour and hear the tales of those who lived in Alcatraz. This tour brings history alive through the recounting of tales from correctional officers and prisoners. Your bike tour will take place the previous day 10:00 AM. Set off from Fisherman’s Wharf and enjoy a leisurely cycle for around 3 hours. You’ll be kitted out with a current model bike, front handlebar bag, lock, helmet, rear gear rack, and takeaway map – and then you’ll be ready to head out on tour! Follow the San Francisco waterfront with your guide, past Aquatic Park, Fort Mason, the Marina, and the Presidio, through Crissy Field and to Fort Point. Cross the Golden Gate Bridge on a wide bike path, and then proceed to Vista Point and on to Old Fort Baker. The cycling tour comes to an end in Sausalito where you’ll have time to enjoy the shops, the many art galleries, and the delicious food. You can return to San Francisco right after the tour ends, or you may keep the bike until closing hours and enjoy additional time exploring this fascinating area on your own. Important Note: All bike tours take place 1 day prior to your selected Alcatraz departure. The date and time selected on your confirmation is for your day 2 Alcatraz Tour. Afternoon Alcatraz departure times are allotted, and so will be confirmed to customers approximately 30 days before departure.

From San Francisco: Cedar Lodge 2-Day Yosemite Park Tour

7. From San Francisco: Cedar Lodge 2-Day Yosemite Park Tour

Run away for 2 days of crisp, fresh mountain air with an affordable and fun 2-day trip to Yosemite National Park from San Francisco. Escape to the mountains for 2 full days of hiking, sightseeing, and exploring in the amazing natural wilderness of Yosemite National Park. Trek through Yosemite Valley, Glacier Point, and the Giant Sequoias, and sleep comfortably in your own hotel room. On this tour of Yosemite National Park from San Francisco, you'll have 2 days to explore, giving you more time and flexibility to see all the sights. Detailed Itinerary: Day 1: San Francisco - Cedar Lodge Head from San Francisco to Cedar Lodge, which is situated in the picturesque Merced River Canyon. Arrive at the accommodation and continue toward the surrounding nature. Learn the history of Yosemite as you explore the Yosemite Valley and take in stunning sites like Yosemite Falls, Inspiration Point, Half Dome, Bridalveil Fall, and El Capitan. Afterwards, return to the lodge and explore its creature comforts which include a restaurant, bar, 2 swimming pools, jacuzzi, and private beach access on the Merced River. Day 2: Cedar Lodge - San Francisco Explore the outlying areas of the park. Take a trip to the awe-inspiring Glacier Point and enjoy a hike among the Giant Sequoias (weather permitting). At the end of the day, head back to San Francisco and arrive at around 21:00.

From San Francisco: Yosemite Lodge 2-Day National Park Tour

8. From San Francisco: Yosemite Lodge 2-Day National Park Tour

Escape to the mountains for 2 full days of hiking, sightseeing, and exploring in the amazing natural wilderness of Yosemite National Park. Trek through Yosemite Valley and the Giant Sequoias. Spend the night in the heart of Yosemite Valley at Yosemite Lodge at the Falls. Your hotel is located at the base of Yosemite Falls - the waterfall that gave the hotel its name. On this tour of Yosemite National Park from San Francisco, you'll have 2 days to explore, giving you more time and flexibility to see all the sights. Your guide stays in the hotel with the group, providing valuable knowledge of the history of Yosemite and a more personal experience of the park throughout your trip. The 2 days in Yosemite National Park are divided between time in Yosemite Valley and exploring the outlying areas of the park. In the valley, you will visit and photograph famous highlights such as Yosemite Falls (the tallest waterfall in North America), El Capitan, Half Dome, Bridalveil Falls, and Inspiration Point. Beyond the valley, enjoy a hike among the Giant Sequoias (weather permitting). This tour of Yosemite arrives back in San Francisco at approximately 21:00 on the second day.

Yosemite Valley 3-Day Camping Adventure

9. Yosemite Valley 3-Day Camping Adventure

Spend 2 nights camping in the world famous Yosemite Valley outside of San Francisco. You will travel in an eco-friendly biofueled vehicle, and all camping gear is provided to lighten your load. All you need to bring is a sleeping bag and enthusiasm for the Californian wilderness. Don't worry if you've never camped before. The camping and cooking equipment is provided, using quality tents. Everybody is expected to participate in the set-up and break-down of camp, and a professional guide will be there to ensure a positive camping experience. You will camp at comfortable campsites that have hot showers and modern facilities. Swimming is available nearby. Food is also provided, but there will be no chefs! You will get the chance to cook over campfires, and you will also be the waiters, dishwashers, and of course the guests! The fare is all-you-can-eat and very tasty, and is a mixture of chicken, beef, and vegetarian. Day 1: On the morning of your first day camping, your guide will meet you downtown at the corner of Mason and O'Farrell Streets in front of the Hilton Hotel at 08:15. Once out of San Francisco, cross the Central Valley and head through gold country on your way to the mountains. Before reaching Yosemite Valley, hike down for a picnic among the giant sequoia trees, the largest living things on Earth. Meals on the first day are not included in the tour price, but you will have an opportunity to get food en route to the park. Depending upon group interest and logistics, you may visit any of the 3 sequoia groves. The hike through the giant sequoias is pleasantly shaded and brings you right up close to these massive wooden monuments, some of which are more than 1,000 years old and measure up to 30-feet wide and 300-feet tall. Continue into the park on a 90-minute guided tour, and descend into Yosemite Valley, the most famous and photographed part of Yosemite, thanks to the work of photographer Ansel Adams. While in the Yosemite Valley, your guide will give you an orientation to the park, as well as an explanation of the itinerary and options for the next 2 days. After some free time in Yosemite Valley, head for the campsite to set up camp, ending the day with drinks around the campfire as you decide what to do with your next 2 days in the park. Day 2: Rise early and prepare breakfast and lunch, clean up camp, and head off in the van for a fun day full of hiking, sightseeing, and exploring. Usually the second day is reserved for exploring Yosemite's High Country. A group hike to May Lake and Mount Hoffman is generally the highlight of the day, depending upon snowpack. May Lake is a picturesque example of a High Sierra lake. If you want more of a challenge, you can continue past May Lake to Mount Hoffman. Located at the geographic center of the park, Mount Hoffman is a non-technical hike that rewards you with a 360-degree view of the surrounding mountain landscape. At the end of the day, head back to camp for dinner and time to unwind by the campfire. Day 3: Day 3 is a free day, where the itinerary is based on the interests of the group. Normally the tour heads back into Yosemite Valley, where you can choose one of a number of great hikes, rent a bike, or relax in the shade by the emerald green Merced River. After a full day in the park, head back to San Francisco, arriving around 21:00. In May, June, and early July, you have the option of joining a whitewater rafting trip on the Merced River, depending on snowpack. This Class III-IV adventure can be added to your Yosemite Escape adventure for only $140-$160.

Streets of San Francisco Electric Bike Tour

10. Streets of San Francisco Electric Bike Tour

Enjoy a half-day electric bike tour around the back alleys of San Francisco, exploring North Beach’s Little Italy district up-close. Get panoramic views of the iconic Transamerica Pyramid building, and much more. The flat route takes in the Barbary Coast and San Francisco’s historic supper clubs. Find out how the neighborhoods have transformed from scandalous to sparkling. Cycle around the Giants’ Oracle Ball Park, and into the culturally rich Mission, Castro, and Haight Ashbury neighborhoods. Look at the ever-changing street art scene, and see the locals who rule each area to make their communities unique. Go to Nopa, and take in the charming Painted Ladies of Alamo Square, before visiting the Civic Center. Pedal to Polk Gulch, San Francisco’s original gay neighborhood. Finish your tour with at look at Aquatic Park, before cycling to Fisherman’s Wharf.

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Frequently asked questions about San Francisco

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What are the best day trips and excursions from San Francisco?

The best day trips and excursions from San Francisco are:

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What people are saying about San Francisco

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 2,053 reviews

From start to finish the whole experience was thoroughly enjoyable - and not just because of the incredible sites that we saw or the group that we had. Our tour guide, Mike, was amazing. He was very insightful on the park and it's history and provided us detailed information on not just Yosemite itself but also San Francisco. He was also open to any questions we had which educated us even further. I have been on multiple day trips previously however Mike is the best tour guide I have had. He also ensured throughout the trip that we had enough food/drink supplies and notified us to let him know if we ever needed something. It was a pleasure to be part of this tour. The park in itself was amazing however the group and Mike made it even better.

This was an amazing experience, well organised and a great way to experience the main sights of the park. Our tour guide Rob M was extremely informative and passionate, and made the experience a fun one. We felt safe and at ease the whole time and learned so much!

Was an awesome day getting to see Yosemite. Rob was a great tour guide and was very knowledgeable and passionate about Yosemite and San Francisco.

aiden was amazing. such a good tour. 100% recommend. you will not regret booking.

Roman was awesome. An informative guide with top notch German humor