For us SF locals Fishermans Wharf can be a tender topic. Whether it be the butt of all our jokes, or that persistent pimple on the face of our beautiful city, or simply a place we visit only when coerced by out-of-town relatives, there is one thing for certain – this area is left solely for the tourists. Crowded with tacky souvenir shops, subpar restaurants and a plethora of aggressive seagulls, it’s no wonder us locals turn a cold shoulder to the area.
But lately I have been attempting to find the charm in Fishermans Wharf, and indeed there are some amazing gems, you just have to venture off the main road. Let me take you on my tour of Fishermans Wharf.
Start at Fort Mason. Technically this is not Fishermans Wharf, but it’s a wonderful start to the walk as you see a beautiful park with the city skyline as a backdrop.
Plus the view isn’t too shabby!
From Fort Mason venture down to Aquatic Park. Again we are not really at Fishermans Wharf yet, but this area is so picturesque and Ghirardelli Square is near by for chocolate lovers. Make sure to go to Hyde Street Pier to tour the historic ships.
Walk along Jefferson Street, the main drag of Fishermans Wharf – see how there are more and more gift shops and tourists…that means we are in the heart of it now!
After you see all the boats offering cruises around the bay, veer off the beaten path and head towards the docks. Near the end is the Fishermen’s and Seamen’s Memorial Chapel, a tribute to all those who live and work at sea.
Past the church, swing right and you end up at the Musee Mecanique, full of all sorts of vintage arcade games.
This is a fun place to take a date, as they have many kissing meters (see how hot and steamy your kiss is!) as well as ‘risque’ peep shows.
Getting hungry? Stop at the crab stands for some greasy goodness that is sure to give you a stomach ache (but is so good at the time)!
If you still feel like walking, continue down to Pier 39 to ride the two story carousel and make sure to visit Magowan’s Infinite Mirror Maze.
Source for above picture. All other pictures my own.