San Francisco December 08, 2022
by Stephanie Garr Here Are The 8 Most Incredible Natural Wonders Hiding Around San Francisco
Nature lovers from all over the world are often drawn to the
natural attractions in San Francisco. Some of these highlights include the City by the Bay’s breathtaking landscape which consists of rocky cliffs that drop straight into the Pacific and massive hills that get caught up in a dense blanket of fog. Without further ado, take a look at eight of the most incredible natural wonders worth visiting when you want to explore some nature spots in San Francisco, California.
1. The Epic Hills
While they aren't exactly
, we can't ignore that San Francisco's
are some of the city's most prominent features. The number of actual hills in San Francisco depends on how you define a “hill.” The estimated count falls between 42 and 50. Either way, they give the city so much of its beauty and charm. Yet, one of the many reasons why residents tend to stay in tip-top shape.
2. Karl the Fog
As it eerily creeps across the city, enveloping us in its mystical vapors, the fog in San Francisco is like nothing else. It even has a name and a Twitter account! The best time to experience
this natural attraction in San Francisco
is from June through August - during those chilly Bay Area summer days and nights.
3. The Rocky Coastline
Another unique nature thing to do in San Francisco is to take in the rocky coastline along the Pacific. This can best be experienced on the Lands End and Batteries to Bluffs Trails in the city.
Even taking out all the manmade wonders such as the Cliff House, the Sutro Baths ruins, the Golden Gate Bridge, and this
, walking along the Coastal Trail will have you weaving your way up and down the coastline. It's truly a nature lover's paradise.
4. The Sandy Specific Beaches: Ocean, Baker, Mile Rock, China, and Marshall Beaches
line the northern and western edges of San Francisco, including the expansive Ocean Beach; the hidden gems of China Beach, Mile Rock Beach, and Marshall Beach. There's also the beautiful Baker Beach with its spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Marin Headlands. Hint: You can get to all of these natural attractions in San Francisco if you follow the trails mentioned in #3.
5. Mount Sutro Open Space Reserve
A dense eucalyptus forest
sits atop the slopes of this 900-foot hill near the geographical center of the city. Former San Francisco mayor Adolf Sutro planted this forest over a century ago. Karl the Fog loves to hang out in this nature spot in San Francisco. This creates an ethereal cloud forest that'll quickly have you forgetting that you're right in the middle of a bustling city.
6. Seal Rocks
small group of rock formations
in the Lands End area, (near the Cliff House and Sutro Bath ruins), used to be home to a population of sea lions (hence its name). They're now mostly taken over by birds. However, they remain a beautiful natural wonder in San Francisco.
7. Angel Island
Some 3,000 years ago,
was a fishing and hunting site for Coast Miwok Native Americans. Over the centuries, it became a home for Spanish explorer Juan Manuel de Ayala. It was also a cattle ranch, a U.S. Army post, an immigration inspection site and detention facility, a Nike missile base, and even a site where WWII POWs were held. In 1954, it was named a state park and officially opened its doors to the public. When you walk its rugged trails, you'll be able to capture spectacular views of the city and the bay from this stunning natural attraction in San Francisco.
8. The Bison of Golden Gate Park
While they're not technically "natural wonders," since the original herd was placed here by humans in Golden Gate Park way back in the 1890s, seeing
in the middle of a major city is pretty cool any way you slice it. The bison you will find today, near Spreckels Lake and just off John F. Kennedy Drive in Golden Gate Park, are descendants of 1984 birthday presents given to mayor Dianne Feinstein.
Along with the spots on this list, what are some of your favorite nature things to do in San Francisco? Feel free to share your thoughts in the following comments section.
Enjoy more of San Francisco’s natural wonders on these
10 awesome hiking trails.
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Address: San Francisco, CA, USA
The OIYS Visitor Center
Natural Attractions in San Francisco
December 12, 2022
What are some of the most famous parks in San Francisco?
Here is an overview of some of the most famous parks in San Francisco:
You'll find information about natural wonders in this piece about
parks near San Francisco as well.
What are some nature trails in San Francisco?
Aside from walking around the natural attractions in San Francisco or going on an urban hike, take a look at the following nature trails in the city, too.
Take a look at these
nature things to do in San Francisco to learn more and check out these easy hikes in San Francisco.
What are some natural wonders in Northern California?
In addition to the gems mentioned above, some other natural wonders in Northern California include the following places.
Redwood National Park
McCloud River Falls
Trinity Alps Wilderness
Point Reyes National Seashore
Cypress Tree Tunnel