Explore the 1,017 acres of Golden Gate Park on a hop-on hop-off bus tour. At your own pace, admire the Japanese Tea Garden and Conservatory of Flowers, then check out fine art at the De Young museum and hands-on nature exhibits at the California Academy of Sciences before cruising by Ocean Beach.
Hop on your bus in bustling Union Square, pass the stately government buildings of the Civic Center and the Victorian “Painted Ladies” of Alamo Square, and then cross into the tree-shaded space of Golden Gate Park—20 percent larger than Central Park, this historic district is home to world-renowned museums and botanical gardens.
Hop off at the De Young Museum to check out its world-class collection of fine art and stop at the Japanese Tea Garden. This beautifully manicured space was designed in 1894 and holds a peaceful pagoda and Zen garden. Admire the botanical displays at the Conservatory of Flowers, and then delve into interactive exploration at the California Academy of Arts and Sciences—you can visit a planetarium, an aquarium, and a 4-story rainforest biosphere under its living roof.
Hop back on the bus and leave the park behind as you make your way toward the Pacific Ocean side of the peninsula. Take in views of the Golden Gate from Ocean Beach, stop for a glass of wine at the landmark Cliff House, and look out over Seal Rock. On your way to Union Square, cruise through Japantown and listen to tales of the Haight-Ashbury's hippie subculture before your tour concludes.